After a huge brunch with your besties, you know why your stomach is bloated, but other times it’s a total mystery. Even if you’re all about the healthy snacks and salads, you could get dreaded bloat, but you shouldn’t ditch your nutritious eats just because of it. The key is eating those foods that lead to bloating at strategic times.
“Avoid potential bloaters before you know you’re going to be giving a presentation or when you’d like to wear a form-fitting outfit,” explains registered dietitian Cynthia Sass. But if you’re at home already wearing stretchy pants, there’s no reason not to dig into foods that may cause your belly to bulge.
Not sure which foods are to blame? These are some of the most common foods that can cause bloating.
Sugar-free gum - It’s the sugar alcohols that can cause major bloating, so watch out for xylitol, mannitol, sorbitol, and others on the ingredient list.
Sparkling water - LaCroix fans, your beloved bubbly water could inflate your belly, so sip your fizzy drink with caution.Garlic - It’s a FODMAPs food, a group of foods that are poorly absorbed from the GI tract and some folks are just more sensitive to garlic than others.
Popcorn - It seems so innocent, but popcorn can cause bloating because of its volume. A serving is three to four cups, so we’re eating a lot of it and it takes up a lot of room in the tummy, but only temporarily.
Big salads - The volume thing is in play with salads as well, so it can fill your belly up fast. But the other issue is that some veggies contain those FODMAPs, like cabbage, onions, and mushrooms, so a big salad is probably pretty healthy, but it could leave you with lots of bloating.
Coffee - It’s acidic, so if you have a sensitive stomach, coffee can irritate it and cause immediate swelling. And sometimes adding sugar or artificial sweeteners can make it worse, so if you have concerns, keep your cup small and see how you feel while drinking it.