Many people suffer from bloating  immediately after eating. This discomfort is due to the sensation of abdominal distension produced by the accumulation of gases or as a symptom of what we know as empacho (indigestion). In this article we will explain how to prevent bloating when eating.

Identify the foods that cause you discomfort

Commonly, there are foods that are more difficult to digest such as grains, flours, and foods high in fat. Its recurrent consumption can cause poor digestion and with this, unpleasant symptoms such as burning in the stomach, belching and bloating . When eating, you must identify which foods are related to the discomfort and reduce their consumption (Norman, 2012).

Increase the consumption of fruits and cereals

It is recommended to increase the consumption of foods rich in fiber such as fruits, vegetables and cereals (based on oats, brown rice and barley), in order to improve intestinal transit and the digestion process. The fiber works as a diluted layer that helps other foods to be absorbed, which shortens the time of digestion (McRorie J, 2015).

It is recommended to consume at least two servings of 100g of fruits a day, this not only guarantees the contribution of vitamins necessary for the body, but also increases electrolytes, fluids and fibers, to improve the absorption process of food and with this, the feeling of bloating will not appear after eating (Lambeau, 2016).

Before eating, some people have a popular habit of consuming a small amount of lemon sumo to avoid symptoms of bloating.

Increase water consumption

It is recommended to consume at least one glass for every 10 kilos of weight of the individual and add an additional glass. That is, a person weighing 60kg will have to ingest at least seven glasses of this vital liquid a day.

Water consumption is necessary to maintain body balance, since more than 50% of the body’s weight is made up of water (Norman, 2012).

Eat enough, but not too much

It is recommended that the portions of food consumed are adequate for each person. Overeating is detrimental to health, bloating, and promotes indigestion.

In the hours after sunset and late at night, overeating produces overweight, so it is always advisable to have a healthy diet and portions adjusted to the weight of each person (Norman, 2012).

Avoid lying down immediately after eating

Naps after eating should be avoided, since when the person lies down, the stomach takes longer to empty its contents. This causes the organic matter in food to begin its process of defragmentation and decomposition within the stomach, beginning to release gases. This release of gases produces abdominal distension and belching that is unpleasant for the patient.

Improve bowel habits

If a patient ignores the desire to go to the bathroom, suffers from constipation and / or uses laxatives to evacuate, their bowel habits should be improved. It is estimated that, on average, a person in normal conditions evacuates at least once a day.

It is also considered normal when the patient has a regular bowel habit and their stools have a consistency and quantity consistent with their food consumption.

To improve the evacuation habit, it is recommended to have a balanced diet, improve fiber and yogurt consumption, have respected schedules for eating, rest and work; in addition to performing exercises that stimulate the motility of the intestine (McRorie J, 2015).

Do exercise

It is recommended to do at least 5 minutes of vigorous exercise during the day. Exercise has been shown to improve intestinal motility. When the intestine increases its peristalsis, it improves the digestion process, since food moves much more efficiently towards the intestine, where it will be absorbed (Villoria, 2006).

See a nutritionist

It is important that the person who has malnutrition or overweight problems go to a nutritionist, who is the professional in charge of measuring their body mass index, fat percentage and adapting the diet to each patient. The consultation with the nutritionist will guide the patient on which foods to consume to avoid abdominal distention when eating.

Rule out associated medical pathologies

It is important that, if the problem becomes chronic, you consult a gastroenterologist to determine if the cause of your swelling is an underlying disease that must be treated to avoid discomfort each time you eat.

Diseases such as gastritis, colic in the gallbladder or parasites, are some causes that can condition bloating or abdominal distention in a patient, so they must be treated to prevent it from recurring.

Medical treatment if needed

The doctor will assess whether the patient has criteria to indicate the use of pancreatic enzymes (such as pancreatin) and anti-flatulent that improve the digestion of flours and fats. These are usually consumed before lunch or the heaviest meal.

Dr. Eric Jackson

By Dr. Eric Jackson

Dr. Eric Jackson provides primary Internal Medicine care for men and women and treats patients with bone and mineral diseases, diabetes, heart conditions, and other chronic illnesses. He is a Washington University Bone Health Program physician and is a certified Bone Densitometrist. Dr. Avery is consistently recognized in "The Best Doctors in America" list.

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