Abdominal swelling sometimes referred to as “distended abdomen” or “swollen belly” has many causes. Sometimes you feel pain or heaviness in the stomach, or you are experiencing this bloated feeling that is unpleasant.
So, what causes abdominal swelling? Bloating is a result of excess gas in the intestines and one or any of the following causes:
- Greasy or Spicy / Fast Food – Abdominal swelling will occur with these types of food because it takes the stomach much longer to digest the fats. This longer time for digestion allows gas to build up.
- Salty Foods – Salt attracts water that leads to a bloated feeling.
- Carbonated Drinks Like Soda and Alcoholic Beverages – Carbon dioxide contents of these drinks are trapped and produce gas in the stomach.
- High-acid drinks like coffee and processed juices.
- Artificial Sweeteners.
- Foods High in Starch – Potatoes, pasta and wheat are some of the examples of foods high in starch. This is due to the fact that starchy foods start producing gas once they are broken down in the large intestine. Although rice is also rich in starch, this does not cause bloating, so this might be a good alternative to your bread.
- Bubble gum / chewing gum cause you to swallow air, and this air is trapped in your stomach causing pressure and bloating.
- Eating fast / not chewing food well.
- Dairy Products or Lactose Intolerance – The lactose (that is not digested) will pass to the colon where gas is produced by the bacteria that are responsible to break it down.
- Abdominal growth, cysts or pregnancy can all cause a bloated feeling. This is because there is something growing inside that is taking up the space of something that has nothing before. Hormones during pregnancy may also cause bloated stomach.
How to Reduce* Abdominal Swelling?
There are many ways we can reduce* and prevent abdominal swelling. Not only we will follow the doctor’s prescription medicines, but also there are ways or home remedies we can do to naturally relieve abdominal swelling:
Change of Diet
If you are fond of fast food, perhaps it is time to skip it, or even completely remove* it from your diet. Fast foods are high in fat, salt content and calories. You might want to choose a healthier diet by eating balanced meals and swap your chips to healthy snacks like fruits or vegetables.
Abdominal swelling can be reduced* by simple changes in the diet. Why not keep a “food diary” and take note of your food and beverage consumption. This is one good way to identify what foods you had prior to feeling bloated.
Eat in moderation and chew your food well. According to Westchester University of Pennsylvania, it is ideal to chew your food 30 to 50 times per mouthful. Not only you will feel more satisfied with your food, you can also reduce* abdominal swelling and reduce* weight.
You may try herbal remedies to reduce* abdominal swelling such as triphala. Triphala is composed of 3 fruits such as Amla, Myrobalan, and Belleric Myrobalan.
Triphala cleanses the colon and regulates the function of the digestive tract. Mix 1/2 teaspoon triphala to 1/2 cup of warm water.
Peppermint tea is good for digestion and bloated stomach. It is also known to relieve heartburn. Chamomile tea is also beneficial for your stomach. It can relieve that gassy feeling and the scent is also relaxing.
Drink Plenty of Water
Keep hydrated and wash out the toxins at the same time by drinking lots of water. You may choose to drink warm water for pain relief and swelling. It is better to drink water instead of soda and other carbonated or highly acidic beverages.
Exercise can reduce* abdominal swelling by keeping the abdominal muscles strong and firm. Exercise will not only get you in shape, but will also regulate your bowel movement, prevent constipation and promote good blood circulation in your body.
Revitalize your energy and get some rest. Having a bloated stomach can cause discomfort and unpleasant feelings. While you are sleeping, the damaged cells will repair and you will feel more energized when you wake up.
If you constantly experience abdominal swelling, it is best to see your doctor to make sure of what is causing your abdominal distention.