Bloating is a condition where a sense of fullness and tightness is felt in the abdomen even without eating anything. It occurs because of excessive gas inside the intestines. Today, due to our hectic lifestyle, we tend to follow irregular eating habits. Moreover, we eat packaged food and junk food more than the freshly prepared, home cooked food. All these factors trigger various digestive problems, like indigestion. This in turn produces gas in the stomach at a faster rate and causes bloating. Other major factors responsible for a bloated stomach are food intolerance such as lactose intolerance, swallowing of gas, insufficient water in the body, hormonal changes in women, etc.
How to Get Rid of Bloating Naturally
Many people are bothered by the problem of bloated stomach quite frequently. There are several natural methods that have proven to be helpful in providing relief from this. Here, we have discussed some easy to follow ways to relieve bloating quickly.
Drink Plenty of Water: Some people assume that the sense of bloating gets aggravated if they drink more water. Actually, this is not so. Lack of water in the body often worsens this annoying problem. Moreover, water flushes out the toxins from the digestive system and gives relief from bloating.
Eat Fiber Rich Foods: Dietary fiber obtained from food helps in digestion and prevents constipation. For this reason, include a good amount of fiber rich foods like whole grains, bran, lentils, dried apricots, dried plums, strawberries, etc., in your diet. However, make sure you do not have too much of high fiber foods in the diet all of a sudden, increase it gradually.
Avoid Gassy Foods: There are some foods that produce gas after eating. They are: beans, broccoli, cabbage, some wheat products, etc. These foods contain sugar which the stomach cannot digest easily and gas is formed. If you face such a problem, then you do not have to stop eating gassy foods completely, but take them once in a while in small amounts. People with lactose intolerance may experience bloating after consumption of dairy products. Artificial sweeteners can lead to abdominal bloating as well.
Avoid Salty Foods: Many women experience water retention and bloating during their period. They can keep it in check by cutting back on the intake of salt and sodium one week before menstruation. During this time, changes in the levels of hormones like progesterone, estrogen, etc., slow down the digestion process and promote water retention. As a result, women feel bloated. In such a condition, intake of sodium will further increase water retention.
Eat Slowly: When you are eating fast or talking a lot while eating, you end up swallowing air in large amounts, which will later trouble you with bloating. Take small bites of food and chew it properly with your mouth closed while eating. Do not drink anything from a straw for the same reason. When you are suffering from bloating, it is also important to take a number of small meals rather than 2-3 large meals in a day. Thus, you do not get hungry and reduce the chances of overeating that can cause bloating.
Take a Walk: Those who suffer from abdominal discomfort due to bloating after eating, often start avoiding food. They should actually go for a brisk walk after the meal. It facilitates release of the gas trapped inside the intestines and gives an instant relief. This habit of walking for 10-15 minutes after meals should be continued even when the problem subsides. Thus its recurrence can be prevented.
These are the simple ways to relieve bloating. In short, small changes in dietary habits and lifestyle can bring about marked improvement in the condition. It has been found that people develop this problem due to side effects of some medicines like antibiotics, iron pills, antihistamines, etc. In such cases, you should consult a doctor who may change the medications. It is also essential to control stress in order to get a complete relief from abdominal bloating.