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Food & Diet

Foods That Cause Gas and Bloating

Say bye to belly bloat once and for all by steering clear of these foods.

Feeling like you can’t zip your jeans is never a good thing — and neither is the gas that often comes along with bloating. Luckily, there are ways to prevent both.

“Bloating occurring throughout the month unrelated to a period can occur for a number of common reasons associated with lifestyle behaviors,” says Sherry Ross, MD, OB-GYN, and women’s health expert at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, CA. “Dietary rituals including many vitamin B and C vegetables are classic causes of gas and bloating and include broccoli, cabbage, onions, and cauliflower, as well as legumes like beans and lentils.” Other dietary culprits? Rich and fatty foods, whole grains, apples, peaches, pears, lettuce, mushrooms, peas, and certain fruits, Dr. Ross explains. “Sugar-free foods containing sorbitol, mannitol, and xylitol are directly associated with this frustrating symptom, too,” she says.

Got milk? That could be another offender. “Lactose intolerance commonly affects women and is a frequent cause of bloating,” Dr. Ross says. “Other lifestyle behaviors that all contribute to bloating include drinking carbonated beverages, overeating, eating too fast, lack of exercise, and drinking alcohol.”

Another tactic to cut down on belly bloat is to limit your alcohol consumption. Also, Dr. Ross advises avoiding foods high in sodium that contribute to bloating and weight gain, such as Chinese and other salty ethnic foods.

To prevent bloating and gas in the first place, follow these tips:

Tips to Prevent Gas and Bloating

  1. Keep a log of what you’re eating. If you notice that you don’t feel well after consuming dairy, try switching to low-lactose or even lactose-free options.
  2. Check the nutrition facts. Try avoiding foods high in fat and fiber as both can contribute to excess gas.
  3. Green tea is a great natural diuretic and can serve as a comforting beverage,” Dr. Ross says.

If you’re still feeling bloated and gassy, it might be time to reach for some extra help, like Gas-X, which relieves gas fast. It contains simethicone, which breaks up trapped gas bubbles in your gut. Once it’s broken down, then your body can release the gas naturally.