5 Reasons You’re Feeling Bloated
Bloating is a big concern for a lot of people.
It seems that whenever they eat a meal, or have certain foods, their stomach sticks out, they feel groggy and drowsy, and they have to fight the urge to stink out the room they’re in. Not to mention, it’s a pretty crappy feeling knowing you’re not exactly looking your best, even if it is only temporary.
So what’s the cause?
More than likely, despite popular opinion, NOT any of the following:
Diet soft drink
Sure, some of these may cause bloating for you, but they shouldn’t all be blamed for everybody’s problems. If you’re allergic or intolerant to one of them, sure, but nowhere near as many people are as you might think.
If you’re consistently suffering with bloating that’s painful, uncomfortable and meaning you’re unable to leave the bathroom for hours on end, that’s probably something to talk to your doctor about.
But if it’s just the case that you occasionally feel a little rough after eating and your stomach gets pretty swollen, then it’s more likely to be one of the 5 reasons below:
1. You’re Eating Too Damn Much
This point is rarely touched on in articles about bloating, but it’s probably the most common.
Your stomach has a set capacity, and if the volume of food you’re eating is pushing it to its max, you’re going to struggle.
This problem isn’t just limited to bulkers; plenty of dieters find that when they’re trying to beat cravings, they eat a load of low-calorie food, which stretches the stomach lining and causes bloating.
It’s the same deal with people who have all-out cheat meals too. No doubt eating a sh*t-load of food is going to stretch the stomach too.
So aim to feel comfortably full after every meal, not stuffed to bursting.
2. You’re Short on Fibre
We all know that fibre is a real digestive rock star, and helps keep you regular by pushing food through your digestive tract.
So if you’re not getting enough, you’ll start feeling pretty bunged up.
A good rule of thumb is to shoot for roughly 10-12 grams of fibre for every 1,000 calories you consume.
2,000 calories per day? That’s 20-24 grams of fibre.
1,500? That’s 15-18 grams.
Bulking on 4,000? Around 40-48 grams should be fine.
3. You’re too High on Fibre
As great as fibre is, you can have too much of a good thing.
Your body doesn’t digest fibre (which is why it’s ideal for pushing food through your system) but at the same time, a lot of undigested matter in your body isn’t going to make you feel on top of the world, as it will slow your digestion and keep food in your system for longer.
4. You’re Under-Hydrated
One of the reasons why a high fibre intake can make you feel crappy is because fibre soaks up water, so if you’ve upped your fibre without increasing the amount of fluids you drink, you won’t feel too hot and bloating is almost bound to occur.
You’ll hear a lot of different recommendations regarding water intake, and this varies a lot from person to person, but your best bet is to never let yourself get too thirsty, and to drink enough so that your urine is almost clear.
You don’t need to carry an old-school gallon jug around with you, but it does make sense to drink more around your workouts, and always have some water nearby so you can sip on it regularly throughout the day, especially if you’re increasing your fibre intake, or find you’re feeling bloated.
5. You’re Eating the Wrong Foods
For whatever reason, some foods just don’t agree with certain people.
Don’t buy into the sensationalism that a food is bad for everybody, but if you do feel like you feel pretty crappy and bloated every time you eat something in particular, then have a think about taking it out of your diet for a while and seeing how you feel.
It might not be that you have a full-blown allergy or intolerance to it, but if you’re sticking with points 1 to 4, and only ever feel bloated after a particular food or meal, then maybe that’s the culprit.
Beating Bloating 101
To help you banish bloating and feel lively and energetic 24/7, along with reading through the 5 reasons here, you’re going to want to try sticking with a regular meal schedule.
For example, while there’s nothing necessarily wrong with intermittent fasting, if you’re eating one huge meal every day, you might feel pretty bloated after that, naturally.
Likewise, if you’re not spacing your meals out through the day, you’re eating a huge amount of veggies in a short time frame, eating while standing up, scoffing down your meals at light speed or you’re under a high degree of stress, all these can contribute too.
Don’t start throwing out all your bagels, pasta and cereals and blaming ‘wheat belly’ but do analyse your diet, and see if there are any obvious reasons in there for your bloat.