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What Foods Cause Bloating?

What Foods Cause Bloating?

Do you ever get bloated after eating certain foods? It's not uncommon. There are certain foods that can cause bloating, and knowing which ones they are can help you make smarter food choices. In this article, we'll discuss some of the most common foods that lead to bloating and go over a few tips to help you beat the bloat. 

1. Cruciferous Vegetables 

Cruciferous veggies contain raffinose — a type of sugar molecule that is difficult for your body to digest. This means that when you eat these vegetables, your body will take longer than usual to break them down in your digestive system, leading to uncomfortable bloating. 

Examples of cruciferous veggies include:

  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Cabbage
  • Brussels sprouts

Pro Tip: To reduce the amount of bloating after consuming cruciferous vegetables, try steaming or roasting them instead of eating them raw. This will help make it easier for your body to digest them. 

2. Fresh Fruit

Though fruit is generally a healthy addition to your diet, some types, like bananas and apples, contain oligosaccharides — a type of carbohydrate that can ferment in your intestines, leading to gas and bloating.

Pro Tip: To minimize the amount of bloating caused by fruit, try eating it in smaller amounts, or mixing it with other foods that can help neutralize the oligosaccharides.

3. Beans and Legumes 

Beans and legumes, such as lentils, contain a type of carbohydrate called FODMAPs (fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols). FODMAPs are difficult for your digestive system to process and may cause uncomfortable gas buildup in the intestines. 

Beans and legumes are also high-fiber foods, and too much fiber can contribute to bloating and digestive problems as well.

Pro Tip: If you want to reduce the amount of bloating caused by beans and legumes, try soaking them overnight before cooking them, as this helps break down FODMAPs making digestion easier on your body. 

4. High-Fructose Foods 

High-fructose foods like sodas, dried fruit, honey, and agave tend to ferment quickly in the stomach, which leads to an increase in gas production. This can cause your stomach to become distended and bloated.

Pro Tip: To avoid this type of bloating, try replacing high-fructose snacks with more fiber-rich options such as fresh fruit or veggies.

5. Dairy

Dairy products like milk, cheese, ice cream, and yogurt contain lactose — a type of sugar that can be difficult for your body to break down

This means that when you eat dairy, your body may take longer to digest it, leading to:

  • Bloating
  • Cramping
  • Stomach pain

Pro Tip: If you want to reduce bloating caused by a dairy food sensitivity, try swapping out whole milk products for those made with lactose-free alternatives.

6. Salty Foods 

Salt has a tendency to draw water into the intestines, which causes them to swell up, leading to discomfort and bloating. 

Pro Tip: Try avoiding salty snacks like chips or crackers and opt for healthier alternatives such as nuts or seeds that are rich in healthy fats instead. 

7. Carbonated Beverages 

Drinking carbonated beverages like soda or sparkling water can also cause bloating because the carbon dioxide gets trapped in your stomach as gas bubbles which leads to an increase in pressure inside your stomach. This excess gas and pressure in your digestive tract can then contribute to bloating.

Pro Tip: If you want to avoid bloat from carbonated drinks, opt for still water instead whenever possible! Herbal teas and unsweetened fruit juices are also good options. 

Are There Any Tips for Bloating?

In addition to being aware of the types of foods that can trigger bloating, here are some other tips to help you beat the bloat:

Tip #1: Watch Your Sodium Intake.

Too much salt can lead to bloating and water retention, so be sure to check labels on packaged foods and avoid adding extra salt to your meals. You should also be mindful of your fast food intake, as fast food is generally very high in salt.

Tip #2: Get Active.

Exercise is great for relieving bloating and promoting healthy digestion. Give yoga a try — it's a great way to tone your abdominal muscles and can help reduce the intensity of bloating.

Tip #3: Drink More Water.

Drinking water regularly helps to flush out toxins and can help reduce bloating. Avoid drinking too much, though; over-drinking can make you feel bloated and uncomfortable. In this case, we recommend taking Bye Bye Bloat — a gentle supplement made with natural ingredients like dandelion and fenugreek to manage excess water weight.*

Tip #4: Cut Down on Carbs.

Foods high in refined carbohydrates can cause gas and bloating, so try to limit your intake of white bread, pasta, and white rice. Instead, reach for whole grains like quinoa and brown rice.

Tip #5: Eat More Fiber-Rich Foods.

Eating a diet high in fiber is important for digestive health and can help reduce bloat. Try adding leafy green vegetables, legumes, and fruits to your diet. You can also take Sparkle Fiber — a fiber-based supplement that promotes normal body detoxification and digestion.* 

Tip #6: Don't Chew Gum.

Chewing gum can cause you to swallow air, leading to bloating. If you’re feeling bloated and uncomfortable, try chewing sugar-free mints instead. Many types of gum also contain xylitol, a sugar alcohol that can contribute to bloating as well.

Tip #7: Limit Your Dairy Intake.

Dairy products can be a trigger for some people when it comes to bloating, so it might help to reduce your consumption of milk, cheese, and yogurt — especially if these are your triggers.

Tip #8: Avoid Artificial Sweeteners.

Artificial sweeteners like sorbitol can cause gas and bloating in some people, so try to avoid these where possible or look out for low-sugar alternatives.

Tip #9: Add Digestive Aids to Your Diet.

Digestive enzymes such as probiotics and prebiotics can help ease bloating and support digestive health. 

You can find these in supplement form via Gut Feelings Probiotics™ or by eating fermented foods like:

  • Kimchi
  • Sauerkraut
  • Kombucha
  • Miso

Tip #10. Talk to Your Doctor.

Last but not least, if you suffer from severe bloating or digestive issues, it’s important to speak to your doctor for advice and support. While bloating isn’t typically a big cause for concern, some conditions that cause bloating, gas, and abdominal pain can be serious. 

With this in mind, be sure to consult with your healthcare provider if you experience any of the following:

  • You have no appetite
  • Your stools contain blood or mucus
  • You have unexplained weight loss
  • You have frequent or chronic constipation, vomiting, or diarrhea
  • You have persistent bloating, gas, or heartburn
  • Your abdominal pain is severe

Your doctor can work with you to identify the culprits and rule out digestive disorders.

Conclusion

No one likes feeling bloated after enjoying a meal, so it’s a good idea to know which foods cause bloating in order to avoid them. Eating a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins is the best way to avoid bloating. Probiotics can also help to reduce bloating, as can drinking plenty of water throughout the day. 

If you’re still experiencing bloating after meals, it may be a good idea to talk to your doctor and see if there are any underlying issues that could be causing it. With the right diet, you can avoid uncomfortable bloating and enjoy meals without feeling miserable afterward.

Sources:

Foods Likely to Cause Gas | IFFGD

Fermentable Foods: Trouble in Your Diet | American Chemical Society

Effects of FODMAPs on the Gut | About IBS

Lactose Intolerance | Johns Hopkins Medicine

Carbonated beverages and gastrointestinal system: between myth and reality | National Library of Medicine

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