Stomach Bloating May Be a Bigger Problem Than You Realize
People who complain about flabby middles may have stomach bloating problems without even realizing it.
Stomach exercises won't do a thing for your bloating, so it's important to determine how much of your problem stems from this common occurrence.
Sometimes it can be difficult to tell if the bulge in your stomach is caused more by fat, bloating or both.
Generally, if you are obese because of a bad diet then it's probably safe to assume that you are experiencing both...especially since a common cause of bloating is indigestion from eating the wrong foods.
Another way to tell if your problem may be bloating is if you experience lots of discomfort after a meal. Gas or abdominal pains may indicate your food is not digesting properly. This can cause some serious amounts of bloating too.
Also, if the size of your "gut" (particularly your lower abdominal region) seems to drastically change in size throughout the day then a big part of your problem may be from bloating as well.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
It sounds ugly, but it really is a very common disorder among people. You may have it and not even know it.
A lot of folks just write off their discomfort and bloating as gas or indigestion when they are really experiencing irritable bowel syndrome.
IBS is a NON life-threatening disorder of the gastrointestinal tract characterized by abdominal pain, diarrhea, gas, bloating and changes in bowel habits. If you have IBS, you may have one or more of these symptoms as they vary among individuals. It's important to note that women make up nearly 75% of IBS sufferers.
Causes of IBS
- large meals
- on-going stress and emotional upsets
- certain foods such as wheat, chocolate and milk products
If you think you may be suffering from this condition, you should seek help from your physician. There are medications that can help you cope with IBS.
Water Rids The Bloating Effect
If you're not drinking enough water throughout the day, this can cause unnecessary bloating.
Water has so many health benefits. Not only does it help with digestion and retards bloating, but it supports so many of the body's daily functions.
If you are a person that has a hard time drinking any water, start off by drinking one or two glasses per day.
Carry a bottle with you or leave one on your desk at work. Gradually work your way up to the 8 glasses.
Lisa's Tip: Here's what I do to ensure I drink my daily allowance of water:
I have two 32 ounce bottles - one at home and one at work (totals 64 ounces which is equivalent to 8 glasses).
I drink half of the 1st bottle at home before I leave for work (16 ounces). At work, I drink the entire 32 ounces throughout the 8-hour day.
Then when I get home I drink the remaining 16 ounces left in the bottle that I leave at home.
If you section off your drinking throughout the day, it doesn't seem so overwhelming. Then once you get used to drinking lots of water, it becomes easier and easier to drink your 8 glasses each day.
If you're concerned about having to go the bathroom constantly, I can tell you that once your body gets used to you drinking lots of water, your trips will become less frequent.
I also try not to drink any water after 7pm. This keeps me from having to make those nightly trips to the restroom.
Chewing Gum & Bloating
I just learned this recently, but chewing gum can actually cause your stomach to swell. This is because when you chew you're swallowing large amounts of air that goes right to the tummy.
Also, if you chew sugarless gum that contains artificial sweetener, this can also cause bloating because your body cannot break down the artificial substitutes as easily, thus causing gas.
I bet you never though chewing gum could do such a thing. ;)
Not only do fatty foods cause the formation of fat cells all over your body, but they also contribute to bloating because they can delay the process of emptying your stomach.
That's why so many people have that uncomfortable feeling after a big Thanksgiving meal. All that fat and grease is just marinating in your stomach trying to find a way to digest.
Drinking water can help tremendously with this kind of bloating problem because it gets things moving! :)
Dairy products can be a big culprit for bloating - especially those of you who are lactose intolerant.
If you have stomach cramps, gas, diarrhea and bloating after consuming ice cream, milk or other kinds of dairy products then these are all signs of someone who is lactose intolerant.
Even if you are not suffering from that condition you still may find that dairy products can cause your stomach to bloat more than other foods.
Again, drinking water after consuming dairy foods can help with the bloating effect.
Fennel Tea Helps Bloating
Fennel tea is an organic tea that is very effective for eliminating gas and bloating by relaxing the gut and relieving spasms in the GI tract. It's especially good for IBS sufferers.
I have had issues with indigestion all my life and finally got a hold of some fennel tea. It is amazing! After only one cup I could immediately tell the difference. Fennel tea is now a part of my regular diet.
I bought it online at Amazon.com. You can also find it in the organic section of various grocery stores.