Beating the Bloat!

There can be many reasons behind the dreaded bloat and its such a common struggle for both men and women. For women, of course hormonal fluctuations could be to blame, but most of the time there are diet or lifestyle issues behind it.


Bloating is not the same as water retention as bloating involves excessive amounts of solids, liquids or gas to be present in your digestive system.


Have you ever played detective to get to the route because of your tight belly bloated feeling?



We’ve listed below a few things that may be the cause and how you can help yourself relieve these symptoms.


If you find that Gas or Gas pain is occurring around the same time of the month, this could be happening due to hormonal changes. If, however, you find this happens after consuming certain foods, then its most likely caused by your gut having a hard time with digestion.


Common culprits are beans, broccoli, onions, and highly processed foods and sodas. You can help combat gas by keeping a food journal and making sure that you’re getting enough dietary fiber by consuming at least 5 servings of fruit and vegetables per day.


IBS, Diarrhea and Constipation can all play a role in your ‘bloat’ issue too.

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common disorder that affects the large intestine.





Signs and symptoms include cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, gas, and diarrhea or constipation, or both. IBS is a chronic condition that you'll need to manage long term.


The signs and symptoms of IBS vary but are usually present for a long time. The most common include:


· Abdominal pain, cramping or bloating that is related to passing a bowel movement

· Changes in appearance of bowel movement

· Changes in how often you are having a bowel movement


Other symptoms that are often related include bloating, increased gas or mucus in the stool.


If you have any of these symptoms you should contact your healthcare practitioner for advice. But the good news is that most people can control their symptoms by managing diet, lifestyle and stress.


Diarrhea is when you experience loose, watery stools (bowel movements). You have diarrhea if you have loose stools three or more times in one day. It usually lasts about one or two days, but it may last longer. Hormonal changes can actually trigger diarrhea, some before their period while others get it after.


If you get diarrhea at the same time each month then it could be provoked by hormonal fluctuations and you could try to combat / reduce it by adding more fiber, whole grain bread, fruits and vegetables to your diet as the fiber will help to make your stool more solid.


If you have a sudden onset, it could be related to an imbalance in the gut for example, a virus, food poisoning, anxiety food allergies and excess alcohol can all bring on diarrhea so be sure to keep a journal of your food and the way you are feeling. Severe diarrhea can lead to dehydration so make sure you’re getting enough water.


Constipation can be triggered by so many things! Hormonal changes, not enough fiber, dehydration, not being active, ignoring the signs to ‘go’, medication, stress, etc…The list goes on!


You can instantly help yourself simply by ‘doing more’ of the items listed below:


  • Eat more fibre – Increase your intake of beans and legumes, fruit, vegetables, nuts and seeds. But go slowly as increasing your fibre too quickly can cause the bloating to worsen.



  • Drink more - Health experts commonly recommend eight 8-ounce glasses, which equals about 2 liters per day.


  • Move more – The American heart federation advises 150 minutes of moderate of 75 minutes of intense exercise per week.



Mental health


Try to identify the root cause of what may be cause your stress. Mental health can most definitely affect your bowel movements so if you’re struggling with any mental health issues contact your healthcare practitioner or a specialist center such as The Lighthouse Arabia Wellness Centre in Dubai.


Food


Adopting healthy eating habits, such as chewing your food well and eating slowly can also help with gas issues.


Rule Out Food Allergies and Intolerances to Common Foods.


Lactose, Fructose, Eggs, Wheat and gluten can all lead to various adverse effects on digestion, including bloating.


Spicy, fatty foods, sodas and highly processed foods are best kept to a minimum. Keep things fresh by eating regular homecooked meals using whole foods!


Contact us today to find out more about our healthy eating plans which will help create structure and balance into your eating routine!


Lower Stress


Try adopting a regular selfcare routine such as mindfulness and mediation. Or simply spend more time outdoors.

Supplements


Taking a Prebiotic and Digestive Enzyme Supplements may also help to regulate your gut microbiome and help break down indigestible carbohydrates. Many are available at your local health food store, pharmacy or online at Amazon.


If you have chronic bloating that causes severe problems in your life, or becomes a lot worse all of a sudden, definitely see a doctor.


There is always the possibility of some serious medical condition, and diagnosing digestive problems can be complicated.


However, the good new is in many cases, bloating can be reduced — or even eliminated — with simple changes in diet.



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