Digestion can be quite the complicated process.
When your body’s digestive system fails to work properly it causes severe consequences like autoimmune disease and nutritional deficiencies. Another, less severe, consequence is bloating.
At one point or another, we’ve all felt it; the tightening, cramping, and feeling that there is a balloon blown up inside of us. Your pants don’t fit. You incredibly uncomfortable. You feel self-conscious.
Good news? There are solutions.
What Causes Bloating?
Through my personal experience and Nutritional Therapy practice I’ve found the following to be the most common causes of bloating.
When food isn’t digested properly it becomes rancid, fermented, and putrified.
Digestion is a north to south process. Bloating occurs when a checkpoint for digestion isn’t functioning properly. This can be caused by eating in a sympathetic state, not chewing thoroughly, a lack of stomach acid and digestive enzymes, and/or an imbalanced gut flora. For more information on the digestive process, check out this blog.
Food sensitivities are a common underlying factor of many symptoms such as bloating, acne, fatigue, brain fog, etc.
I like to explain bloating caused by food sensitivities like this: scratch your arm back and forth for 30 seconds. What happens? The skin becomes red and irritated and often swollen. This is similar to what happens with food sensitivities. Improperly digested food particles begin to “scratch” up the insides, creating inflammation and swelling (bloating).
Food sensitivities are often resolved with removal, gut healing, and proper reintroduction.
Americans are notorious for excess consumption of diuretics and inadequate water intake. The body holds water when it senses a “drought”. Consuming the proper amount of water allows our
body to properly use the water and flush it out. This reduces bloat and keeps the body running more efficiently.
Constipation deserves its own blog, but in reference to bloating, it is one of the biggest culprits.
Backed up bowels causes the abdominal region to feel hard and distended. To reduce constipation keep adequately hydrated, heal the gut, and, if needed, try getting the bowels moving with some magnesium citrate. When the bowels are able to contract and initiate a bowel movement, bloating will immediately begin to decrease (and, bonus, you’ll often feel less cranky.)
Digestive disorders are the most complicated cause of bloating.
Possible suspects to consider:
- Autoimmune Conditions such as Celiac Disease, Chrone’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis
- Small Intestinal Bacteria Overgrowth (SIBO)
- Parisitic or Fungal Infection
My recommendation would be to seek out professional help from either someone like myself or a qualified physician. Each body is unique; therefore, it requires unique attention, especially in the case of digestive disorders.
I must state, again, that the information provided in this blog is not intended to treat, diagnose, or cure disease.
Simple, Effective Bloating Remedies:
While I’ve sporadically listed a few bloating remedies above, here are a few of my favorites.
Acute Cases of Bloating:
Example: Your body won’t agree with something you ate and/or you enjoyed a little too much food in one sitting.
Apple Cider Vinegar:
If you read my blog often you may think I believe ACV is a cure-all. You’re pretty much correct 😉 One dose of Apple Cider Vinegar and my bloating seems to immediately diminish. If you’re used to the taste of ACV, try 1 Tablespoon in 6oz of water for immediate relief.
This anti-inflammatory spice successfully calms the digestive tract and relieves bloating. If you experience nausea with your bloating, make ginger your first option (easiest in tea form.)
My favorite brand of ginger tea is Traditional Medicinals but you can also make homemade with freshly ground ginger root. And as I mentioned in my blog about the foods I always travel with, keep Gin-Gins on hand as well. They’re super portable and quite effective.
Chronic Cases of Bloating:
Example: You struggle with bloating day in and day out, often with each meal.
Imbalanced gut flora doesn’t happen over night and dramatically affects the quality of your digestion. Adding a quality probiotic to your supplement routine will positively impact your digestion and bowels. When gut flora tips on the side of excess bad bacteria we begin to see things like yeast overgrowth. Tipping the scales in favor of good gut bacteria helps to reduce bloating and get the digestive tract back in proper balance.
Address Underlying, External Stress:
External stress creates internal stress and stress releases a fight-or-flight cortisol response. This cortisol puts the body into a sympathetic state. In a sympathetic state the body sees a decline in digestion and increase of inflammation. Practice mindfulness and eliminate stress factors to reduce your bloat.
Also incorporate more self-care into your routine and eliminate the things that stress you out (if entire elimination isn’t possible, brain storm ideas to at least lessen the situation)
Bloating is a sign that your body needs support and balance.
I chose digestion as my Nutritional Therapy speciality because of my passion to help others learn what it took me years to figure out.
With Celiac Disease, I, myself, am no stranger to the struggle of trying to put pants on that fit one day and don’t the next. The irritating feeling that you can’t get your belly to “go down”. I’m not unfamiliar with the back and forth of this and that, trying to identify the root cause.
Try some of the remedies I’ve listed above and if your symptoms don’t decrease, find professional help and guidance to walk you through step-by-step.
To book a free, 20-Minute Nutritional Therapy discovery consultation/call where we establish if Nutritional Therapy is right for you, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
In love and health,
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Disclaimer: None of this information is intended to diagnose or treat any type of illness or disease. Always consult with your physician before making any decisions regarding your health.
Many images in my blogs are taken, edited, and owned by me. They are not to be used elsewhere without proper permission.