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What is Bloating?

Bloating is the increased buildup of gas in the intestines and the stomach. Bloating often causes discomfort and pain and the infamous “stuffed” feeling. Bloating is typically accompanied by abdominal gurgling, burping, and flatulence (passing gas), among other things.

What Causes Bloating?

There are many causes of bloating, including the buildup of gas in the intestines and the stomach. Gas can build up for a variety of reasons, such as when food gets broken down (some foods release more gas than others) or when individuals swallow air. Other times, bloating is caused by moderate medical conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), or severe medical conditions. 

How Do I Get Rid of My Bloated Stomach?

There are a number of ways to get rid of bloated stomachs. The most obvious way to get rid of bloated stomachs is to rule out food allergies and intolerances, avoid foods and beverages that commonly cause bloating (see below). Foods high in fat, fiber, salt, and starch, in particular, are common causes of bloating. Chewing gum, drinking from a straw, and eating too quickly are certain behaviors that add air into the gastrointestinal tract. Therefore, cutting out chewing gum, straws, and slowing down your eating can alleviate bloating.

Why am I Bloated after Eating?

Eating and drinking are common causes of bloating because when the body consumes and digests food and beverages, it produces gas. In addition, when individuals are eating and drinking, they swallow air, a gas. When this gas enters individuals’ gastrointestinal tracts, they feel bloated.

What Foods Cause Bloating?

There are several foods that are commonly associated with bloating including disaccharides, such as lactose (e.g. dairy products), monosaccharides, such as fructose (e.g. fruit) oligosaccharides (e.g. artichokes, garlic, legumes, onions, rye, wheat), and polyols or sugar alcohols (e.g. fruits and vegetables, especially cruciferous vegetables). Chewing gum can also cause bloating. While these foods are commonly associated with bloating, bloating is not an inevitable result from eating these foods. The body’s response to different foods varies from person to person. 

Do Probiotics Help with Bloating?

Yes, probiotics help with bloating. Probiotics restore and improve the gut microbiota and have been shown to be effective in alleviating gastrointestinal side effects such as bloating.