How many times have you put on a dress, zipped up your jeans or slipped into your bathing suit, only to discover your tummy had popped out to look like a belly bump? Do you have need to casually open the top button on your jeans right after (or even in the middle of) a meal? Dred the extra puffiness in your face…you know, that swollen look?  A lot of times, we feel (and look) “big,” but it’s not because of excess fat. It’s because of what’s going on inside of us. Enter the bloat! 






Guess what? These symptoms aren’t limited to the occasional holiday feast or vacation splurge: we’re getting them much more often than that. Digestion is a major process and many factors effect it, so it’s no surprise we can experience frequent problems. Any time your diet or lifestyle slows, interrupts or halts digestion, you can expect to have your belly in turmoil.  

A portion of my studies at the International School of Detoxification are covering what the causes of belly bloat are. I’ve discovered some surefire ways to address the causes that I’m eager to share with you, but first, let’s look at the reasons behind the battle of the bloat belly bulge!

The five most common causes of bloating include:

  1. Eating too fast – remedy is really simple: slow down! This often happens with people who eat on the run, in a hurry while they’re driving, standing at the kitchen counter wolfing down a meal while watching the news.
  2. Eating rich and foods that are fatty can make us feel stuffed. Plus, fat takes longer to digest than carbs or proteins and when you start combining fat with proteins and carbs like fruit the digestive process can be compromised. If the digestive tract doesn’t move the food through efficiently, gas builds up in the intestines causing bloating – and discomfort!  Healthy fats are needed in our diet, like olive oil, coconut oil, and avocados…but limit those other fats.
  3. Overeating is likely the most common cause of bloating.
  4. Food intolerances or sensitivities, including gluten, celiac disease
  5. Gut/microbiome imbalance, including yeast and bacteria overgrowth – grains, starches and complex carbs yield sugars with feed yeast and gut bacteria. The result? CO2 and nitrogen gas that build up in the gut (think of filling a helium balloon!)

Some of the other worst belly-bulge inducing offenders.

  • Dehydration
  • Improper food combinations–too many complex foods in one meal can neutralize digestive enzymes
  • Hard-to-digest foods such as dairy products
  • Sudden increases in raw fruit and veggie intake and/or a high fiber diet
  • Constipation
  • Hormonal imbalances
  • Acids, and an overly acidic diet – animal flesh and dairy, alcohol, sugar, processed foods, vegetable oils, caffeine etc.
  • Digestive disorders: IBS, Crohn’s disease, diverticulitis etc.
  • Emotional eating

How to Manage Bloat:

In holistic health, we never treat the symptoms. Rather, we address the underlying cause. By looking at the list above, it’s easy to come up with some tools to manage the causes of belly bloat, ultimately remove the painful and unsightly symptom! So, before you reach for the Gas-X, check out my some of my top tips to cut bloat:

  1. Embrace mindful eating practices – first, slow down So why would hurrying matter? About half the gas in the digestive system is swallowed air. To avoid extra air in your tummy, skip drinking from a straw, pass on the chewing gum, and just say no to drinking carbonated beverages and sucking on hard candies. Be mindful of portion size, eat until you are 70% full (not stuffed), chew your food properly and eat without distraction. Eat sitting down at a table, without the TV, a book, or iPad games or phone, and savoring your food. You’ll maximize the effects of digestive enzymes and curb bloat.
  2. Balance your gut flora – tip the scales in favor of good bacteria by increasing fermented foods, reducing the use of unnecessary antibiotics, removing gut irritants and inflammatory food from your diet. These good guys play a fundamental role in digestion and also protect your intestinal wall, helping to keep bloat at bay.
  3. Decrease the acids and alkalize your diet. When our internal fluids are too acidic, our body tries to protect cells by drawing water into them, leading to dehydration, constipation, and, you guessed it, bloating! The key here is to focus on alkalizing foods that are also naturally hydrating.
  4. Manage stress – this packs a double punch. Emotional eating, particularly when stressed, leads to hurried, over-eating, once again key factors in belly bloat. Stress itself causes hormonal imbalances and sugar metabolism dysfunction–all leading to fermentation of sugars and subsequent bloating. Meditation, sleeping more and finding time for yourself can help manage stress and balance hormones.
  5. Need a kick in the bum? Detox! Take on a cleanse program with an elimination diet to help you flatten your tummy, slim those hips and the bonus is the how isolate specific food intolerances or sensitivities that may be causing you bloat. It wasn’t until I did an elimination diet that I realized grains and dairy were not my belly’s friends. Setting all the inflammatory foods aside, then adding systematically putting them back into my diet one by one really helps you discover the true culprits affecting you.  

A cleanse will also teach you to naturally hydrate, alkalize and upgrade your body’s built-in cleaning pathways–-all really important factors when it comes to managing and reducing belly bloat.

Looking for a detox?

Check out my Work With Me Page to see what current program we have running now!



There are many ways to enhance digestion and repair your gut. Tip the scales of chemistry towards an alkaline diet, manage stress, and heal and repair the hub of it all so you can combat belly bloat. I hope I’ve given you some clues as to the cause of your bloat, so you can explore what action to take.

Assessing your individual lifestyle to pinpoint the culprits will help you get your favorite jeans fitting properly again! 

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