If you are one of the 60 to 70 million individuals in the United States suffering from digestive health issues, you know how embarrassing and uncomfortable bloating and gas can be. (Source: American Gastroenterological Association) Food can be part of the cause of your bloating and gas. There are two ways to figure out what foods are causing you pain, an IgG food allergy test and an elimination diet.
An IgG test can be done at home and identifies from 96 foods what you may have an allergy or sensitivity. This is the easiest way to figure out what foods to either eliminate or reduce how often you eat them. Two companies you can buy the food allergy tests from are Everly Well and The Great Plains Laboratory.
An elimination diet is a little harder to figure out what foods are causing you to bloat and have excess gas. The list of foods below are a good place to start but since every body is different, you may have other sensitivities or allergies from foods that aren't listed. With an elimination diet, stop eating the food you think is causing the reaction for at least 4 weeks. Then slowly add it back in noting how you feel after eating it.
How would eliminating your the bloating, excess gas and other digestive health symptoms improve your life? You could:
✅Be more present with your children
✅Thrive in your career
✅Improve your communication and your relationships
✅Have more fun!
✅Move your body and improve your fitness
✅Lose weight and feel better about yourself
✅Be able to cook healthy meals for you and your family
✅Take an active vacation
✅Reclaim your life!
Bloating and gas are only two of many symptoms of an unhealthy gut. Other symptoms are: diarrhea, constipation, fatigue, lack of energy, brain fog, moodiness, skin rashes, abdominal pain, anxiety, frequent belching and/or stomach gurgling. You can heal your gut and overcome these embarrassing and painful symptoms. Not sure where to start? I am here to help!
I am a Certified Holistic Nutritionist teaching people just like you how to stop suffering from the embarrassing effects of an unhealthy gut so you can get back to living. The TAKE YOUR LIFE BACK coaching call is a FREE 30 minute call where we will talk about your specific symptoms and start creating a plan on how to heal your gut using the Simply Great Gut Health program.
Simply Great Gut Health is a customized 5 Step plan that heals your gut and fits your busy lifestyle.
It’s very simple. No jumping through hoops and NO PRESSURE.
If we determine it’s not a fit, we’ll go our separate ways for now.
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Now, let's look at the foods that most frequently cause bloating and gas.
BEANS & LEGUMES
While eating beans and legumes are usually a healthy choice, for some they cause bloating and gas. This is because they contain a protein called lectin. However, there are a couple of ways to reduce lectins which can help reduce bloating and gas. If you are buying dried beans, soaking them in water for 12 to 24 hours reduces lectins. Make sure to change the water halfway through the soak time you choose. If you are buying canned beans, they already have lower lectin levels but soaking them will help reduce the lectins even more.
Broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts and asparagus are cruciferous vegetables that can trigger bloating and gas. They contain raffinose which is a complex sugar that the body has trouble breaking down. (Source: Medical News Today)
WHEAT AND WHOLE GRAINS
Anyone who has gluten sensitivities or intolerance knows that wheat and whole grains can cause a whole bunch of problems for some people, including bloating and gas. Wheat, barley and rye contain gluten and can cause bloating, cramping and gas. Gluten irritates the the lining of the small intestine and is totally indigestible. (Source: Live Science) So even people without gluten sensitivities can benefit from reducing gluten in their lifestyle.
Rice, however, is a safe grain that will not cause bloating or gas. Rice is fully digested in the small intestines which means it is less likely to cause bloating or gas. Other grains that do not contain gluten are quinoa, oats, corn, teff, amaranth, buckwheat and sorghum.
Onions contain fructose, which is a sugar that the intestines break down during digestion. However, some fructose travels to the colon, where bacteria ferment the fructose. This causes the release of hydrogen and methane gases, which cause pain, bloating, flatulence, and diarrhea. (Source: Web MD)
Though garlic is relatively low in fiber and other carbohydrates, it does contain starches that the body has a difficult time digesting. These starches are passed from the stomach to the small intestines before moving into the large intestines where the bacteria can start breaking down the undigested parts of the garlic. (Source: LiveStrong)
Dairy products contain lactose, a sugar that requires specific enzymes in the body to break it down. If you are bloating and having gas (among other negative effects such as diarrhea) it means you don't have the enzymes to break down the lactose. Lactase, the enzyme needed to break down lactose is abundant when we are born. (Source: Britannica)
As we age, enzymes are reduced in the body which means you may have been able to eat dairy but discovered over time, that dairy was something you could no longer eat without bloating and gas. Taking a lactase enzyme is the best way to manage a lactose intolerance situation. However, there are so many great diary free products to replace traditional dairy that it is easy to avoid dairy.
SODA AND BEER
Carbonated beverages create gas in our bodies because they contain either sugar alcohols or fermented carbohydrates. In addition, the carbonated process also causes bloating and gas because it adds unnecessary air into your digestive tract. (Source: LiveScience)
CHEWING GUM, USING STRAWS AND HARD CANDY
Similar to soda and beer, the act of chewing gum, sucking on a hard candy or using a straw increases the amount of air in our digestive tract. This causes bloating and gas. A quick way to help eliminate the excess air is to do a couple of yoga poses. Happy Baby, Child's Pose and Squats can help reduce the air in the digestive tract quickly. (Source: Medical News Today)
While the above foods can cause bloating and gas, it doesn't mean you have to eliminate them from your routine. You can still eat them but be aware of the side effects. Limiting them is the best course of action because I never recommend avoiding a food all together unless there is a serious allergy.
Do you think you can reduce the how much of the above foods you eat to have less bloating and gas? Leave me a comment below.