A common occurrence, bloating gives one a feeling of 'pressure' or 'fullness' in the stomach.
Not exactly an isolated symptom, bloating can be accompanied by acidity, belching, cramps, pain, stomach aches, shortness of breath, and lower back pain. If stomach bloating is a routine problem for you, or if your belly is bulging after last night's heavy dinner, follow these tips and beat that bloating feeling.
Hydrate. Drinking water, perhaps, is the last thing you will think of once your stomach is about to explode. But drinking several glasses of water at one go, will help in maintaining your sodium balance. Water helps in keeping constipation at bay, however make sure you do not indulge in carbonated beverages and fizzy drinks in order to compensate for water intake. A simple trick: Add a dash of lime and black pepper to your water and quench your thirst with this all natural water cooler.
Cut down on salt. Here is what you should do in order to cut back on your salt intake:
Go for fresh food produce rather than processed ones: Many of the naturally produced food and fruit products are low in salt. For instance, fresh meat is low in salt content when compared to its refined and processed versions such as ham, bacon, sausages and hot dogs.
Check the label and go for low salt products: As explained earlier, the trick lies in going for food products which are low in sodium content by carefully checking the label.
Go for herbs and other spices instead of that extra dash of salt: One can go for in-season produce of dried herbs to add that extra flavour in your meals. You can also use fresh fruits juices, citrus fruits and spices to boost the flavour in your meals.
Be careful when selecting salt substitutes: They may contain excess volumes of potassium, which does help in lessening some of the problems caused by high salt content, but too much of it can lead to kidney or eventually heart problems.
Skip sugary alcohols. Stay away from sugar-free fizzy drinks as much as you can, even when they promise to be full of calorie-free sugar substitutes. This is because sugar substitutes, such as - sorbitol, xylitol, maltitol, isomalt, lactitol, mannitol, erythritol and hydrogenated starch hydrolysates (HSH) - tend to add to the feeling of bloating and thus, are best avoided.
Be wise about dairy. Dairy products are full of natural sugar; called lactose that might interrupt the digestion process leading to bloating. And, if you are lactose-intolerant, make sure to avoid cheese and yogurt, as it can lead to acifity build-up and cramping.
Eat small. Now eating small is the biggest golden rule, if you want to lose weight, but it is also a beneficial exercise if you are battling stomach bloating. Perk up your meal with a healthy snack, if you think your stomach is about to explode and quit indulging in heavy meals. Go for 4-6 mini meals in a day and make sure to eat slowly.
Move it. Get off the couch, if you feel bloated. Never skip your workout, if your belly feels full and uncomfortable. Exercise is a proven solution for any kind of digestive disorders as it helps regulate your body's systems.
However, if your bloating continues then it might be a case of chronic bloating and can be something as serious as celiac disease. So follow the thumb-rule of elimination and failing all else, visit your doctor for a check up.