Do you remember the last time you were bloated? I do. It’s not a good feeling. What’s worse is when you’re constipation and it makes you that much more bloated.
But have you ever wondered why you get bloated? Yesterday, I faced this question after feeling progressively more yucky and puffy as the day went on. What was causing it?
It only took a little self reflection and quick research to find out why. Now, it totally makes sense. Want to stop bloating and constipation? The good news is that avoiding it isn’t as hard as it seems.
Cut back on Dairy
If you’re bloated or constipated, have you ever thought about how dairy products could be contributing to that? Don’t get me wrong. Foods like milk, cheese and yogurt are all VERY beneficial for you. They hold a ton of calcium, vitamin D and protein that helps your body build stronger bones, skin and muscle…however, have you ever caught yourself becoming bloated or constipated after eating them?
This may be because of a sensitivity to the milk proteins in dairy products. You see, dairy contains (especially those that are more processed) contain ingredients that increase constipation in some people. However, does this mean that if you experience constipation or bloating after drinking milk you’re lactose intolerant?
Not necessarily. In fact, unless your symptoms are very severe and you’re passing diarrhea often, then you’re most likely good.
Up until recently, I had never thought of the correlation between dairy products and bloating. It makes sense though that foods like milk or cheese will block your intestines more.
Because of their lack of fiber. Your body needs fiber to maintain a healthy GI system. When you fill your diet with foods that don’t contain fiber, your chances of becoming constipated or bloated rise. What’s the solution to this?
Eat a more balanced diet
If you’re currently eating 3-4 servings of dairy a day, then try cutting back to two. Incorporate more vegetables and whole grain foods into your meals. After a couple days, see how your body reacts and feels. If your bloating or constipation decreases, then you’ve found the right fix!
Check out Foods to Keep You Full Longer
One of the most important things I would tell people who are bloated or constipated is to GET MOVING! There’s nothing better for gas trapped in the stomach or blocked intestines than to get up and be active.
Because movement encourages metabolism and digestive function. I can not testify to this enough. Your body was made to move! As a result, it functions optimally when you’re getting enough physical activity. If you take that away, your body is forced to work harder to maintain healthy functions overall.
Having a hard time finding motivation to stay active? Read Finding Motivation to Workout for some tips.
One way that I’ve found to encourage myself to stay active more is by wearing a fitness tracker. Over the years, I’ve owned a few different ones. They didn’t last, however, due to lack of durability. The one I have right now is by far my favorite.
Check out the Samsung Gear Fit 2 for more information!
Right along with being active, drinking water is your best friend when it comes to battling bloating and constipation. It’s like liquid gold. Seriously.
But how much water do you truly need? Experts recommend 7-8 glasses of water per day. Before going any further, however, I want you to take a moment to analyze what all you do during a typical day. Are you outside a lot? Do you have a job that requires lifting and physical activity? Do you sit at a desk for most of the day?
The truth is…not everyone is going to need a strict 7-8 glasses of water a day to stay hydrated. Some people may need more. Some people may need a little less. It all depends on your lifestyle and how much fluids you lose. Answering those questions will help you figure out how much water your body really needs throughout the day.
Also, you have to listen to your body. If you’re finding yourself thirsty, dry-mouthed or even hungry throughout the day, try drinking more water. Not only will you feel fuller, but you may also experience some of these side effects.
- Healthier, glowing skin
- Decreased bloating and constipation
- Weight loss
- Improved energy
- Improved brain function
- Decreased headaches
Read DIY Beauty Skin Care for some neat all-natural ways to care for your skin.
Avoid Irritating Foods
O.K. I’m not going to lie. This one can be a little difficult. In a world filled with greasy burgers, pizzas, nachos and pretty much ANYTHING unhealthy, it can be hard to avoid irritating foods. We’re so blessed when it comes to having enough to eat, this can actually be a deterrent to our health! Imagine that.
So how do you successfully avoid irritating foods that make you bloated and constipated? My advice would be to:
- Buy foods at the grocery store
- Take the time to cook at home
- Take snacks with you to avoid the temptation to eat out
- Incorporate variety into your diet
- Indulge about 15-20% of the time
The reason I said to indulge is so your body won’t have withdrawals from certain foods. Even though eating healthy significantly decreases bloating and constipation, if you’re miserable because you can’t enjoy your favorite foods…then we have a problem. The key is balance. That’s why I recommend indulging 15-20% of the time 😉
Conclusion – How to Stop Bloating and Constipation
To sum everything up, bloating and constipation are annoyances that you don’t have to live with. Whether it’s adjusting the foods you eat, being more active, decreasing your dairy consumption or drinking more water, I encourage YOU to experiment and find what works best for you.
With that being said, realize that indulging in a cheat meal is not the end of the world. If you still find yourself bloated or constipated, try detoxing or drinking peppermint or green tea. You’ll quickly find that constipation and bloating decrease when you rid your body of toxins.