Diets often cause you to eat foods you might not otherwise consume, but sometimes certain foods and eating habits can cause a bloated stomach after eating. While it’s normal to experience bloating on an infrequent basis, some methods of dieting can increase how often your body experiences gas.
One of the most popular techniques for eating less is chewing on gum or eating hard candies between meals to avoid the desire for extra snacking. There are two reasons why this dieting technique might give you a bloated stomach after eating. First, it is quite common to gulp down air when chewing gum, even if you chew with your mouth closed. When excess air is swallowed it can lead to gassy feelings and stomach bloat.
Since it’s common for dieters to use sugar-free gum, the types of artificial sweeteners used in these candies can greatly increase bloating. Although each body is different and not everyone will be affected, sugar alcohols such as xylitol, maltitol and sorbitol can result in bloating and gas.
Vegetable Consumption and Gas
Modifying your diet for weight loss can often cause you to experience gas and bloating due to the popular inclusion of vegetables in a healthy meal plan. Foods such as lentils and lima beans are notorious for producing gas. There are over-the-counter items offered in most grocery stores designed to counteract the gas and bloat that result from consuming them.
Vegetables such as cauliflower, broccoli and cabbage also produce high amounts of gas when consumed, and while the gassy effects of these foods might not give everyone the same level of bloated discomfort, eating large amounts of vegetables can certainly exacerbate the potential for gas. As is commonly advised, including a balanced level of vegetables in your diet as opposed to overdosing on giant salads and large plates of broccoli will keep bloat to a minimum.
It is common to increase fiber consumption to aid in creating a balanced diet. While fiber is a superior digestion aid, some high-fiber foods can also result in a bloated stomach after eating. This bloat can become especially noticeable during the beginning stages of a new diet, when high amounts of fiber are first introduced into daily meals.
The best way to prevent severe bloating from fiber-rich foods is to introduce fiber slowly into your diet. In addition, keeping the amount of fiber in a diet at a steady level instead of removing it completely and reintroducing it will aid in allowing your body to stay accustomed to eating it.
Dealing With Gas
As it is often difficult to avoid things like vegetables in a healthy diet, there are some steps you can take to reduce a bloated stomach after eating. Chewing slowly and thoroughly can reduce the amount of air you swallow while eating. Exercising on a regular basis can aid in allowing the body to absorb gas in the colon (and can even help to counteract constipation). Finally, eating bloat-inducing foods in moderation will reduce your incidence of gas.