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Probiotics for Bloating

Is your belly feeling swollen and distended after eating, and you feel like you’re three months pregnant? Yes, it’s the after-meal bloat. Here’s the thing though- it’s natural to experience a little bloating as your stomach distends after eating to allow for digestion. And this happens even if you have something perfectly healthy. Bloating becomes an issue if it is prolonged and severe, or you have been experiencing other digestive issues like constipation and diarrhea.



What is bloating?


Bloating is a very common digestive issue. Oftentimes, it can cause discomfort, pain, and a “stuffed” feeling. The most obvious symptom, it can make your belly look bigger. Bloating happens when your GI tract is filled with gas or air. You feel full and tight as if you’ve eaten a bunch of meals and there’s no room left in your stomach.

Symptoms of common bloating includes:

  • Gas
  • Discomfort
  • Stomach pain
  • Abdominal rumbling or gurgling

Symptoms of severe bloating includes:

  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Noticeable weight loss
  • Heartburn
  • Fever


What causes bloating?


According to health experts, bloating is typically caused by imbalances between the good and bad bacteria in your gut. There are trillions of bacteria that work to aid with digestion. However, factors like poor nutrition, medications, stress, environmental exposures can interfere with the normal digestion process and cause GI discomforts. Other simple reasons for bloating includes:

  • Reflux
  • Menstruation
  • Overeating
  • Constipation
  • Weight gain

Medical conditions that cause bloating includes:

  • IBS and IBD
  • Infection
  • Inflammation
  • Blockage in the bowel or bladder
  • Liver disease
  • Anxiety and depression


Dysbiosis and bloating


Dysbiosis or imbalances in gut bacteria can result in a number of digestive health issues, including bloating. In dysbiosis, there is a loss of beneficial bacteria and an overgrowth of harmful bacteria. If your bloating symptoms are due to dysbiosis, then taking probiotic supplements may help restore the natural balance and reduce GI discomfort.


How can probiotics help with bloating?


There are many types of bacteria residing in your gut, and they can vary between individuals. It is logical to assume that bacteria have a direct impact on gas production, and there are several studies to support this theory. You see, not all bacteria produce the same amount of gas as part of the fermentation process. Some produce a lot of gas like Clostridia and Enterobacteriaceae, while others produce little to none.


By using a probiotic, you might be able to shift the balance toward less gaseous bacteria and therefore experience less bloating. Probiotic supplements can help mitigate the feeling of bloating by altering the type and number of bacteria in the gut. When taken regularly, probiotics can help maintain a healthy microbial balance in the gut, which can prevent or reduce bloating.


If you are struggling with digestive discomfort and bloating, then picking up a probiotic supplement is the key. Probiotic supplements with strains like B. lactis Bi-07 and HN019, L. acidophilus NCFM can help reduce gas production and bloating while other strains can reduce gas production alone. These well-studied strains are bloat-beating strains. However, some probiotics can actually cause bloating. So, pay careful attention to the labels and choose the right strain for your condition.

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