Food takes up space. And that’s why it’s perfectly normal for your belly to expand a little after eating. However, if it’s kind of larger than usual and there’s some discomfort involved, chances are you are suffering from bloating, which is something that causes your gastrointestinal or GI tract to be filled with gas.

In some cases, bloating is brought about by medical conditions such as:

  • Food intolerance
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Acid reflux
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD

You would think that bloating is only due to issues concerning your digestive system since it is the one that’s primarily involved. However, experts say that there are various causes of bloating that have nothing to do with your tummy. Some of them include stress, anxiety, depression, hormonal imbalance and the intake of certain medications.

However, most of the time what you put in your mouth is the reason why bloating strikes. The following are some of those that you should stay away from if you’re prone to bloating:

Cruciferous Vegetables

If you want to considerably lower your risk of battling cancer one day, make sure that you regularly include cruciferous vegetables in your diet on a regular basis. Experts say that cabbage, kale, broccoli, cauliflower and bok choi contain certain compounds that are capable of preventing cancer cells from coming into being or hampering the proliferation of currently existing ones.

Sadly, cruciferous are notorious for leaving you bloated. However, it’s not really a good idea for you to stay away from them and risk having deadly cancer in the future. Making sure that you cook your cruciferous vegetables very well can help keep bloating at bay.

Legumes

Beans, peas, lentils — all of these are healthy because they are loaded with fiber that you need to keep constipation, hemorrhoids, colon cancer and heart disease at bay. Unfortunately, legumes are known to trigger bouts of bloating. There is a certain type of sugar in legumes that bacteria in your gut love. And when they feast on it, the formation of lots of gas happens.

To lower your risk of ending up bloated without saying “no” to healthy legumes, pair them with whole grains that get digested easily, such as quinoa and rice. Experts suggests that it’s a good idea for you to get your gut used to legumes — keep on eating them and soon enough you won’t bloat as much.

Dairy

If you often encounter bloating together with nausea, diarrhea and a rumbling belly after consuming milk or anything that is out of milk, it’s not unlikely for you to be lactose intolerant. Just like legumes, dairy foods have a special type of sugar (lactose) in them — people who have lactose intolerance do not have the enzyme (lactase) necessary for properly breaking down lactose. And when your gut bacteria devour undigested lactose, bloating happens.

Needless to say, if you are lactose intolerant you should avoid dairy or opt for lactose-free or non-dairy food products. You may also approach your doctor and ask about lactase tablets.

Salty Stuff

In some instances, it’s not excess gas that’s leaving you bloated but too much water. So in other words, it is water retention that’s making your belly — and also various areas of your body — puffy. A diet that’s high in sodium is the number one reason why water retention happens. Definitely, you should considerably limit your intake of sodium daily. Experts say that you should consume no more than 2,300 mg of sodium per day. If you have high blood pressure or diabetes, aim for 1,500 mg or less per day.

So what should you do if you’re retaining water after having a salty meal? Drink plenty of water! No, this won’t make you puff up even more — it will help flush excess sodium out of your body.

If you often hear some of your family members and friends complain about bloating, then make sure that you share this article on your different social media sites before you go.

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