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How To Tackle A Swelly Belly (Bloating Part 2)

In our last post “Abdominal Bloating Part 1 – Causes” we looked at some of the lifestyle and medical causes of bloating, now its time to examine what can be done about those troublesome belly swells. So how can you treat it through lifestyle changes, and when is it time to see the doc?

Make Better Food Choices

In our last post, we listed certain foods that can lead to gas and bloating which are often best to avoid or reduce if you are suffering the condition frequently. Here are some foods that have the opposite effect the body, actually helping to reduce swelling and gas. Some of these include:

  • Ginger – has long been used for its medicinal effects on the gastrointestinal tract, so load up on this spice!
  • Bananas – contain a surplus of potassium, which can help reduce bloating that is due to salt intake.
  • Cucumbercontains helpful bloat-fighting antioxidants and has a high H2O make-up.
  • Yogurt – while most milk products are on the no-no list for many of those with easily irritated stomachs, the probiotics in yogurt can be very beneficial in balancing the gut and aiding digestion.
  • Peppermint tea – peppermint has a calmative effect on the digestive tract (except for those prone to heartburn or GERD – it may make your condition worse).
  • Water – there’s a reason you keep getting hammered over the head with “drink many glasses a day!” of the old H2O, it can really help clear you out and help things run more smoothly.

Other Lifestyle Changes To Reduce Bloating

Some lifestyle changes that can really help cut down on bloating include:

  1. Eating smaller meals will help you not overeat, which is one of the most common causes of bloating and excess gas.
  2. Eat and drink slowly to avoid swallowing air with each bite, which also leads to gas.
  3. Avoid foods that commonly cause bloating.
  4. Take a short fiber hiatus – yes, fiber is good for you but it also increases intestinal gas to help things pass through the system, so ease back a little if you’re experiencing too much bloating, then ease back into eating fiber.
  5. Make a habit of a post-supper walk (after your food has some time to settle) to aid digestion.
  6. See an allergist to rule out any food allergies or sensitivities that may be causing your bloating.
  7. Stop smoking to avoid swallowing excess air on the regular.

When To See The Doc?

If you are experiencing any of the following, you should seek medical attention right away:

  • You are avoiding bloat-foods and taking steps to lesson stomach swelling but still routinely experience distention.
  • Bloating often comes along with persistent, and worsening heartburn.
  • Bloating is accompanied by excessive discomfort and pain.
  • Your bowel movements have changed (you are more constipated or diarrheic) or if you have changes in your stool such as blood present.
  • You feel feverish or your stomach is tender to the touch.

If you have any questions about intestinal bloating or are suffering some of the additional symptoms listed, feel free to sign up to DocChat today for a video consultation with one of our excellent board certified DocChat physicians.