It is very normal to experience abdominal swelling: after eating and feeling incredibly heavy, with a huge belly that’s nothing like how it normally is.
What happened? Did I suddenly gain a bunch of weight? How long do I have to endure this uncomfortable feeling and appearance? This is something truly bothersome, that is due to several factors. We can, however, alleviate it with a few simple pieces of advice, mentioned below, for you to incorporate into your diet.
What causes abdominal swelling?
Eating too quickly
Some people think that if they don’t eat this way, they’ll never feel satiated. But just the opposite is true: you will continue to be hungry, because the feeling of satiety takes 20 to 25 minutes to reach the brain. Beyond that, we swallow air, which is stored in our abdomen, causing pain and annoyance.
If you don’t chew your food well, you are not allowing the enzymes in your saliva to enter it, so as to properly combine with the carbohydrates. This means that your food will not ferment as it should in the intestines.
What can I do to avoid eating so quickly?
For example, you could begin your meals by serving each dish, one by one, starting with a salad. Toasted bread requires that you chew slowly, which combines your food little by little.
Do you have too much fried food in your diet? Drop it.
Battered food, fried potatoes, casseroles, and stews, contain a lot of oil from preparation. These are fats, and fats are not easily digested. They stay in our stomach, swelling after each meal.
Solutions: Cook your food on a griddle, in the oven, or steamed, rather the fried. Think, for example, that olive oil penetrates foods less, and it is always better to let fried foods set on a paper towel for a while, to absorb excess oil.
Do you drink a lot of carbonated drinks?
Drinking carbonated drinks fills the belly with gas, obviously. Also, if they contain sugar, we are consuming what is known as “empty calories”, that adds energy, and leads to weight gain. Carbonated water, while it doesn’t contain calories, does also produce a swollen abdomen, which is even worsened if drank during meals.
Fiber, in moderation
If we only eat a little bit of fiber, we’ll be constipated. But eating more than what the body accepts is also bad. It’s best to eat fiber in moderation, as too much leads to diarrhea and abdominal swelling.
Care for your digestive enzymes
Eating all of your food with processed flour, like breakfast cereals, bread, cooking, pasta, and even rice, for example, depletes digestive enzymes that make up our own digestive system, since the foods we eat do not contain enzymes. This translates to weaker digestive powers, which in the end, leads to abdominal swelling, gas…
Eat whole foods
The nutritional value of whole foods are unbeatable: vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants…they also provide enzymes with positive effects in our digestive system to help fight abdominal swelling.
Recommended diet to avoid abdominal swelling
- Fresh fruit is very easily digested. It contains fiber and large amounts of water. They have very little fat, making it a perfect option, for example, to make a fruit salad for dinner. Watermelon with apricot pieces and cherries…If possible, use different fruits. It’s not all too advisable to just eat one fruit.
- Salads that combine lettuce, corn salad, spinach, and fruit, like pineapple and papaya, are excellent for digestion. It is always best to add fruit to your dinner.
- Sprouts: soy, alfalfa, lentil...These are very healthy foods, loaded with vitamins and mineral, and low in fats. They are perfect in vegetable stews, or soups, and cold salads. They can even be included in tortillas!
- Sauerkraut, or fermented cabbage. Contains very beneficial dietary fiber, thanks to the process of fermentation that this food goes through. This makes it much more digestible, it magnificent in salads. We can reduce the excess salt by adding water to it just before serving.
- Horchata: Lactose-free, and served cold, without sugar, makes this a very pleasant beverage. Also helps prevent abdominal swelling.