If I had one pound for every client who tells me "I look 6 months pregnant and I’m not"... I’d be retiring soon! Bloat is by far the biggest gut complaint I hear from every prospective and actual client I work with.
It's not just about throwing some tips and advice at you and hoping some of it will work, however. Finding out WHY you are bloated is half the 'cure'. So for this reason, I thought I’d give you some answers as to why you might be bloated here and I will give you some tips and guidelines on how to get rid of it in my next article/blog.
Some causes of bloat:
1 Slow digestion: Low levels of digestive enzymes and various food intolerances could be causing your bloat. This will make digestion of some sugars, some proteins, dairy and gluten tricky, and finding the culprit is crucial as bloat is only one of the symptoms you can develop from these issues.
2 Bacterial imbalances: caused by overuse of antibiotics, chronic stress, over-consumption of sugars, yeasts, alcohol, gluten, some dairy, dehydration, parasites and viruses. The gut’s fragile balance of bacteria can easily be disturbed and this will not only cause bloat, but also affect your immune system, hormones, mental and skin health.
3 Yeast/candida: Do you ever feel like your belly 'bubbles' up and bloats after eating, just like bread dough expands before baking? Do you also show signs of fungal infections like athlete’s foot, fungal nails or thrush? Then you may have a yeast overgrowth/infection/candida, which takes over the good bacteria in your gut, causing fermentation and gas. This is a very common condition that requires some strict dietary changes (depending on the extent of your symptoms, so don't just hop on the candida diet just yet!) and it will require patience, as candida is not an easy or quick imbalance to get rid of.
4 Constipation and gas: Ineffective and slow elimination is a common cause of bloat. When bowels stay ‘stuck’ in the colon for more than one or two days, they will produce fermentation and gas, which will often be uncomfortable and sometimes lead to IBS-like cramps. The main reasons for constipation being dehydration, low fibre diets and low fat diets, you know what my advice is likely to include in part two of this post!
5 Hormonal changes: Particularly prevalent around the menopause, bloat can occur as the gut, thyroid, adrenals and liver health are all closely related and so frequently out of balance due to diet, stress, contraceptive pills etc.
IMPORTANT: Every cell and organ in your body (and mind) is connected and all are working in harmony to always try and achieve overall balance (homeostasis), so it is important to adopt a holistic approach to bloat, as more than one of these common issues could be affecting your gut.
This is why my next blog on how to get rid of bloat will include some advice that might not feel obvious to you - but maybe the answer that works for you.
Read this page to find out how I work with clients to help them restore balance so that they can really love their bodies and food again, as well as going out, wearing shapely clothes and living their lives fully.
Thanks for reading and don't forget to leave comments/questions below! Nathalie