The Surprising Reasons You Might Be Bloated

The Surprising Reasons You Might Be Bloated
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Many people with multiple sclerosis (MS) struggle with intestinal issues. There is evidence of the link between gut health and MS. 

Bloating is a common result of these issues. It’s super annoying and always happens at the worst time, such as when you’re out and about or wearing something fitted to an event. It’s important to remember that it’s common in everyone, not just in people with MS, and there may be some surprising reasons why we feel bloated. 

Bloating causes the stomach or abdomen to feel swollen. It is usually harmless, and there could be a number of causes. The most common reason for bloating is excessive gas, which typically leaves the body through flatulence or burping. 

After feeling bloated for a long time, I researched possible causes. I learned that dehydration can cause bloating. I never knew that. It suddenly made sense why I’ve felt so bloated during the hot weather we’ve had in the U.K. Maybe I was dehydrated.

When you’re dehydrated, you tend to get constipated, causing the body to hang on to fluids and bloat. However, when you drink plenty of water and hydrate, your body lets go of the fluid it doesn’t need, reducing your bloating.

Bloating for any amount of time probably makes you think, “Will this bloating ever go away?” There are a lot of reasons we may feel bloated. Let’s explore a few. 

  • Chewing gum and swallowing air. That makes sense: Swallowed air gets trapped, resulting in bloating. 
  • Eating too fast. Similar to chewing gum, eating quickly introduces more air, which builds up in your gastrointestinal tract. 
  • Eating foods that create gas in your system, such as high fiber foods, beans, and some vegetables, such as cauliflower, broccoli, kale, and Brussels sprouts.
  • Some fruits can also cause bloating, such as pears, apples, apricots, and prunes. 
  • Food intolerances, such as to gluten or lactose, or allergies, such as to eggs. 
  • Drinking a lot of soda. Soda is full of carbonated air, which builds up in our gastrointestinal tract, causing our stomachs to feel swollen. 
  • Menstrual cycle.
  • Indigestion. 
  • Constipation.
  • Some medications. 

If you’re feeling bloated right now, could anything I just mentioned be the culprit? 

Remember: It is common for people with MS to have some kind of digestion issue

Some people find it helps to keep a record of what they eat so they can track any patterns surrounding a particular food. 

My ENabled Warrior Symptom Tracker book contains a food and hydration tracker (as well as a bunch of other trackers) so you can easily see patterns in what you’re eating and discover what is causing your digestion issues.

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Note: Multiple Sclerosis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Multiple Sclerosis News Today or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to multiple sclerosis.

Jessie Ace is host of the DISabled to ENabled podcast. A podcast that aims to inspire people living with chronic illness. She’s interviewed everyone from Paralympians, radio DJs, chronic illness bloggers, and marathon runners. She’s also a writer and illustrator for the biggest MS charities worldwide such as the multiple sclerosis today, National MS Society, MS Society UK, shift.MS, MS-UK amongst others and she has also written articles and illustrated for Momentum magazine, MS Matters and New Pathways. Jessie was diagnosed with MS at 22 years old and says MS makes her feel blessed every day to be able to live a new life and to connect with so many amazing people. Her own experience of being newly diagnosed so young was negative and scary – she wants to change this for other young people and support them through the process by being a patient advocate.
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Jessie Ace is host of the DISabled to ENabled podcast. A podcast that aims to inspire people living with chronic illness. She’s interviewed everyone from Paralympians, radio DJs, chronic illness bloggers, and marathon runners. She’s also a writer and illustrator for the biggest MS charities worldwide such as the multiple sclerosis today, National MS Society, MS Society UK, shift.MS, MS-UK amongst others and she has also written articles and illustrated for Momentum magazine, MS Matters and New Pathways. Jessie was diagnosed with MS at 22 years old and says MS makes her feel blessed every day to be able to live a new life and to connect with so many amazing people. Her own experience of being newly diagnosed so young was negative and scary – she wants to change this for other young people and support them through the process by being a patient advocate.

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