Bloating causes a lot of discomfort to the stomach. It feels like the formation of excessive air in abdomen which makes it inflated. It may also feel embarrassing especially when you are among people and your tummy protrudes out like a baby bump. Most of the time, it is accompanied by accumulation of gas in the stomach which remains trapped and it increases your urge to puke or rush to the washroom. It also makes you feel clumsy, lethargic and inflated from inside. Occasionally, you may experience stomach pain and inflammation. Stomach bloating is very common due to our hectic life and sedentary lifestyles today. Although, it is usual to have a bloated stomach once in a while, frequent bloating may be the symptom of an underlying medical condition like gastrointestinal diseases, allergies or cancer. However, most of the time it is temporary and associated with air trapped in the abdomen, and goes away after a few hours.
In This Article, We Have Listed Down The 10 Most Common Reasons Why You May Feel Bloated:
1. Poor Digestion
Most of the times, bloating is associated with poor gastrointestinal functions, which is the case with both men and women. A poor and dysfunctional digestive system with stomach disorders like Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), constipation, ulcer in the intestine, gas formation, dysfunctional gall bladder, celiac disease, acidity and gas may cause bloating.
Constipation is the most common reason for a bloated and inflated stomach which signals you to go to the washroom to clear your bowels. When you have constipation, the bowels remain stuck within the intestines along with the gas that forms along with it causing pain, irritation and hardness in the stomach. Drink plenty of water, fiber rich food, detoxifying food and avoid food that causes constipation. Do adequate exercise.
3. Fluid Retention
Fluid retention, also known as Ascites or Edema is associated with storage of fluids in different areas of the body. When there is such retention in the stomach or abdominal areas, bloating takes place which is often accompanied by increased body weight. You may experience swelling in different parts of the body and feel heavier than usual. If the symptoms persist, you should see the doctor as this maybe the signs of some underlying diseases or medical conditions like hepatitis, Polycystic ovaries (in women), and even cancer, although rarely.
heavy meal in one go, your digestive system may not be well equipped to metabolize the whole lot. Moreover, it also depends on your eating habits. If you eat the kind of food and in quantity that is outside your daily eating habit, for example in feasts, your stomach is likely to act differently. It is better to eat in smaller portions at frequent intervals to avoid bloating.
5. Eating Rich And Fatty Foods
Rich and heavy food or the food that are high on carbohydrates and protein can over-stuff your stomach and cause discomfort. Foods that are rich in fats also cause flatulence and indigestion. All these types of food are difficult to digest and thus, remain in the stomach for longer, making the stomach fuller and bloated.
Dehydration also causes bloating, especially when we eat heavy meals and drink less water. The lack of water causes some electrolyte imbalance which slows down the process of indigestion and cause a lot of discomfort, bloating and other digestion problems. Dehydration also causes constipation and IBS. Drink plenty of water and other fluids like juice and soups to stay hydrated all the time, especially during summers and after workouts when the body loses considerable amount of fluids as sweat. The pattern of consuming fluids should be regular and consistent. If you stay dehydrated for some time, and then start your fluid intake to overcome this, the body has a natural tendency to retain excess water to avoid the situation from happening again. This will result in more water retention and puffiness.
7. Bowel Obstruction
Blocked bowels may also cause bloating if there is an obstruction in the release of bowel due to a condition like a tumor or a scar tissue. If you experience any sharp pain in the rectum while passing out bowel, you should see your doctor immediately.
If you have a bacterial or any other type of infection or worms in the stomach, this may cause inflammation and surge in the production of WBC around the pelvis. Your stomach may feel puffy and bloated accompanied by pain and discomfort. You may also experience some other symptoms like mild fever, nausea and swelling in the lymph nodes.
9. Food Allergies Or Sensitivities
Most of us have allergy, sensitivities or intolerance towards some type of food or the other. The most common types of food allergies are lactose intolerance, where a person is allergic to milk and various milk products. If someone is suffering from celiac disease, it is a case of allergy towards food that contain gluten, which is a protein found mostly in flours and cereals. Moreover, people are allergic towards different types of food, which may vary from person to person. Many people have intolerance towards peanuts, seafood, eggs and certain types of fruits. Our body is unable to break down and digest the food we are allergic to, resulting in bloating and irritation.
9. Hormonal Changes
Premenstrual syndrome or simply PMS is often associated with stomach bloating and difficulty in digestion often caused due to hormonal changes that induce fluid retention and constipation. During the early days of menstrual cycle, which is referred to as follicular stage, ovulation takes place and the levels of estrogen (a female reproduction hormone) goes up, along with the buildup of fluids and blood, that causes bloating, pain and discomfort. This is very common and temporary. One the menstrual flow starts; things are eased out with the outflow of the stored blood, tissues and other fluids. You should not worry much if it goes away on its own and you do not experience any other unusual symptoms.
Bloating does not cause cancer. However, it may be an early warning of the disease or any other underlying medical conditions that may be severe. It is best to look for more symptoms to correlate bloating with cancer. See your doctor if the bloating persists or you are doubtful.