What causes belly bloat?
Waking up with a bloated stomach is not a good feeling. But before you start blaming your puffy tummy on gas or PMT, you should know that bloating can also be a side effect of other conditions like diarrhoea, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, or a food allergy or intolerance. For persistent belly bloat, seek a physician’s advice to get the help you need.
Eat at the dinner table
Lounging in bed while snacking is the perfect recipe for morning bloat. “If you lay down at night to munch, that allows gas to go down into your lower abdomen,” says Dr James Reynolds. “You should be sitting upright when you eat so if you do swallow excess air, it encourages the gas to go up and out versus down and in.” You should also eat slowly and avoid gulping your drink during your meals; inhaling your food and drinking while you eat can also increase air intake and up your risk for developing gas later on. Consuming vegetables like asparagus, bok choy and celery throughout the day are great options for keeping your belly bloat-free.
Give your belly a massage
Mum might have been onto something when she rubbed your belly as a kid to soothe a tummy ache. Sometimes bloating can be caused by constipation or problems in the gut, so gently massaging your stomach in bed may actually help move things along overnight. It increases your motility to move your hands along your gastrointestinal tract,” says gastroenterologist, Dr Judy Nee. Press along your colon, going from the right side of your lower abdomen up into your stomach area and down to the left side; this follows the path of the gastrointestinal tract. Dr Nee tells her patients to write out “I [heart] U” across their stomachs to ensure they massage their gastrointestinal tract in its entirety.