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Gas, Bloating, Indigestion??

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After the long  holiday weekend, you may be feeling some sort of internal discomfort in your tummy today.

Not to worry; indigestion, gas and bloating are all common symptoms of the tummy telling you, you might have gone overboard with your eating pattern this past weekend.

When your tummy is causing you trouble, your day is rather unenjoyable.  That is why Family Medical Walk-In Clinics wanted to provide you with some different tips and tricks recommended by professionals to help your unsettled stomach get settled.

Gas, Bloating, Indigestion; Yes, they all mean something different

  • Intestinal gas is typically caused by the fermentation of undigested food.  It also forms when your digestive system doesn’t completely break down certain components in food.
    • When gas doesn’t pass through belching or flatulence, it can build up in the stomach and intestines and lead to bloating (MayoClinic.com).
  • Bloating, which is a feeling of fullness in the abdomen, is natural and is usually caused by swallowed air or the breakdown of food through digestion.
  • Indigestion, also known as dyspepsia, is a term used to describe one or more symptoms including fullness during a meal, uncomfortable fullness after a meal, and burning or pain during and/or after a meal (NDDIC).

What May Be Causing Gas

 

  • Food residue in your colon.
  • Changes in intestinal bacteria due to antibiotics or other medications.
  • Carbohydrates not processing properly.
  • Swallowed air that migrates to your colon.

Ways to Prevent Excess Gas

  • Avoid foods that affect you the most, such as; beans, peas, cabbage, bananas, raisins, etc.
  • Eat fewer fatty foods.
  • Temporarily cut back on high-fiber foods.
    • Fiber helps with digestion, but it can also cause gas, so maybe back away for a day or two and then when you notice a break, slowly start to add fiber foods back in to your diet.
  • Eat slower.
  • Stay active- maybe go for a walk after eating to help your digestive system break down the foods you just ate.

What May Be Causing Bloating

 

Content provided by MayoClinic.com

  • Eating fatty foods.
  • Stress and/or anxiety.
  • Smoking.
  • A gastrointestinal infection, blockage or disease.
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBD), which is a condition characterized by abdominal pain or cramping and changes in bowel function.
  • Conditions such as celiac disease or lactose intolerance.  Meaning the intestines aren’t able to digest and absorb certain components of food.

Foods to Avoid Bloating

  

Foods that contain carbohydrates cause gas, provided are those foods that may increase your chance of feeling bloated:

  • Baked beans.
  • Broccoli.
  • Brussels sprouts.
  • Cabbage.
  • Cauliflower.
  • Lettuce.
  • Fruits; such as apples and pears.
  • Chewing gum.
  • Carbonated Drinks.
  • Foods containing high amounts of sodium.

What May Be Causing Indigestion

 

Content provided by ClevelandClinic.com

  • Results of eating too much.
  • Eating too fast.
  • Eating high-fat foods.
  • Eating during a stressful situation.
  • Being tired.
  • Smoking.
  • Drinking alcoholic beverages.
  • Drinking carbonated beverages.

Ways to Avoid Indigestion

 

Indigestion is a symptom rather than a disease, so treatment usually depends on the underlying condition causing the indigestion.  Remember; excess stomach acid does not cause indigestion (ClevelandClinic.com).

  • Don’t chew with your mouth open.
  • Don’t talk while eating.
  • Don’t eat too fast.
  • Eat smaller meals.
  • Drink fluids after meals rather than during.
  • Avoid late night eating.
  • Avoid spicy foods.
  • Avoid alcoholic beverages.
  • Avoid wearing tight fitted clothing.
  • Exercise approximately an hour before or after eating.
  • Eat at least three hours before going to sleep.
  • Sleep with your head elevated (at least six inches above your feet).
    • This will allow digestive fluids to flow into the intestines rather than the esophagus.

When to see a Doctor

 

Although gas, bloating and indigestion is usually temporary, there can always be an underlying health issue causing you that uncomfortable feeling.  Consult your doctor when you notice…

  • Diarrhea.
  • Constipation.
  • Nausea or vomiting.
  • Weight loss.
  • Abdominal or rectal pain.
  • Persistent heartburn.
  • Blood in stools.
  • Fever.


Sources:

http://my.clevelandclinic.org/disorders/Indigestion_Dyspepsia/hic_Indigestion.aspx

http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/indigestion/#what

http://www.bing.com/health/article/mayo-125100/Bloating-belching-and-intestinal-gas-How-to-avoid-them?q=bloating

http://www.ehow.com/how_5086760_stop-belly-bloat.html

http://www.health.com/health/library/topic/0,,gas_aa113156,00.html

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