Bloating is a feeling many of us are well aware and familiar with. And we must say, it is not a pleasant feeling. Raise your hand if you would like to eliminate bloating from your life.
Well, the good news is that while you cannot fully eliminate bloating, you can eliminate or reduce the foods that cause bloating. In addition to foods, there are other factors that cause bloating. Given the fact that between 15 and 30 percent of adults experience bloating, it is mandatory that we do something about it.
Usually, bloating is caused by something we consume. Yes, there are medical conditions that can cause bloating, but diet is mostly the key factor. With that in mind, here are 13 foods that are healthy, but cause bloating at the same time as well.
A type of legume, beans contain high amounts of healthy carbs and protein. They are also high in fiber, minerals, and vitamins. However, the problem is they also contain sugars that belong to the group of carbs called FODMAPs. These are short-chain carbs that escape digestion and are then fermented by gut bacteria in your colon. The byproduct of this process is gas and bloating.
And while healthy people might not experience any problems with FODMAPs, patients with irritable bowel syndrome will experience gas and bloating that causes discomfort and flatulence.
Try to consume pinto beans and black beans that are more digestible instead.
Lentils are also legumes, and same as beans, they come packed with protein, fiber, and healthy carbs. But because of their high fiber content, they can cause bloating in sensitive individuals. And same as beans, they contain FODMAPs, sugars that contribute to excessive gas production.
One way to eliminate bloating is to soak the lentils before you eat them. This will make them easy to digest. Or, you can you go with light colored lentils which are usually lower in fiber.
When you think of bloating and diet, carbonated drinks are usually the first association. These drinks contain high amount of carbon dioxide, which is basically a gas. Drinking carbonated drinks results in swallowing large amounts of carbon dioxide. And in the process, some of the gas gets trapped in your digestive system, causing uncomfortable bloating in the process. Sometimes, you might even end up with cramps. Plain water is always a good alternative, or a herbal tea.
In the past few years, there has been a lot of controversy surrounding wheat. One of the reasons is wheat contains gluten, a protein that many people are sensitive to. Wheat is still widely consumed, usually as ingredient in most breads, pastas, pizzas, and baked goods.
People that have gluten sensitivity or celiac disease will experience bloating, gas, and stomach pain when consuming wheat.
There are a lot of gluten-free alternatives to wheat, including pure oats, buckwheat, quinoa, and coconut flour.
All cruciferous vegetables can cause bloating and gas. Broccoli is usually on the front of that list. And while broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables are very healthy, they do contain FODMAPs. The best way to eliminate the bloating problem is to cook cruciferous vegetables, making them easier to digest.
Widely regarded as one of the healthiest vegetables, onions are an underground bulb vegetable. Popular in cooked meals, onions are usually eaten in small quantities. They are however, main dietary source of fructans, soluble fibers that can cause bloating. People are also sensitive to compounds in raw onions.
If you cannot stand onions, try using fresh herbs and spices as alternative.
We usually consume barley through our cereals. Yes, barley is very nutritious, rich in fiber, and contains high amounts of minerals and vitamins. But because of its high fiber content, whole grain barley can cause bloating in people who are not used to high doses of fiber.
Barley also contains gluten, which will cause problems for individuals with celiac disease. Try refined barley instead, which your digestive system will tolerate easier.
We all know dairy is very nutritious, and is one of the best sources of protein and calcium. Some of the dairy products include milk, cheese, yogurt, and butter. The problem with dairy and dairy products is 75% of the world population cannot break down lactose, the main protein in dairy products.
People who are lactose intolerant can sometimes handle cream and butter, or fermented dairy products. But if you want to be safe, go for lactose-free dairy products.
Another cereal grain on the list, and another one that is highly nutritious. Rye is a great source of fiber, copper, B-vitamins, and manganese. But again, this cereal grain contains gluten, protein that some of us are intolerant to.
Same as with wheat and barley, the safest alternative is to consume other grains like oats, buckwheat, brown rice, or quinoa.
An apple a day, keeps the doctor away. We’ve all heard this one. That is the reason apples are among the most popular fruits in the world. However, they contain high doses of FODMAPs, and high fiber content. Fructose and fiber in combination can cause gas when fermented in the large intestine. Your two options is to cook the apples, or go for other fruits like banana, grapefruit, orange, strawberries, or blueberries.
Called superfood, garlic is one of the healthiest vegetables on the market. Same as onions, garlic contains fructans, which are known for causing bloating.
Cooking the garlic will reduce the effect. And as with onions, if you cannot stomach it, try using fresh herbs and spices instead for seasoning the food.
These are used to replace sugar in sugar-free foods. Think chewing gums for example. Sugar alcohols are basically FODMAPs that can cause problems in the digestive system. Stevia is your best alternative to sugar and sugar alcohols.
We are sure you’ve heard the term “beer belly” before. This refers to increased belly fat, but also the bloating effect caused when drinking beer. We talked about carbonated beverages before. And beer is basically a carbonated beverage made from barley, wheat, and rice, in combination with yeast and water. It is only logical that beer contains gas and fermented carbs that can cause bloating.
If you are looking for alcoholic beverage that doesn’t cause bloating, go for red or white wine.