How often do you complain of feeling bloated? While mostly it could be due to overeating, the problem could also be related to an undiagnosed underlying condition.
Bloating is the uncomfortable belly protrusion that hits at seemingly random times and can cause physical distress to many. Here are some other causes that could be behind it:
1. Consuming a high-starch or high-sodium diet
It has been reported by various dieticians that diets which are high in sodium, such as ones that include canned meat, bacon and even beetroot, can cause water retention in the body, leading to bloating. You will be amazed to know that other than pizza and sandwiches, vegetable juice has a high amount of sodium in it too. Also, foods rich in starch such as beans, rice and potatoes can increase the amount of gaseous bloating.
2. Drinking soda
It is a well-established fact that carbonated beverages such as soda or sparkling water are one of the most common reasons for bloating. The fizz in these sodas gets trapped in the intestines and the stomach leading to bloating and belching. Since many of these sodas have a lot of sugar in them, they make your body retain water, thus making you feel bloated.
You may feel bloated if you are not being able to pass stool properly. According to the doctors, since the stool stays in the intestines for a longer period of time, it starts to ferment right there, leading to bloating and gas. Constipation can occur due to the consumption of some foods containing gluten, meat and milk products. Constipation can also be caused due to not drinking enough water, change in diet, or even stress.
4. Underlying diseases
Diseases like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs), ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease, affect the gastrointestinal tract of the body and cause bloating in people who suffer from them. This bloating can be managed by treating the underlying condition.
There are certain medications such as aspirin, antacids, anti-diarrhoeal and fibre or iron supplements which can not only cause bloating but also other gastrointestinal issues. Even stool softeners can cause bloating in some people. Women have complained that the birth control hormones, whether in pill, patch or implant form, can cause bloating and heaviness in them as well.
FODMAP is a term which stands for fermentable, oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols. FODMAP comprises of fermented foods, sugars, alcohols and carbohydrates that are not easily digested by the body. They can cause gas, abdominal pain, bloating, stomach distention and diarrhoea in some people. FODMAPs are present in food items like asparagus, garlic, pears, mangoes, peaches, wheat pasta, and rye bread.
For more information, read our article on Bloating.
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