With so many contradictory claims when it comes to eating healthy, it can be hard to know what to eat and what to avoid. Am I right? This confusion leads so many to throw their hands up altogether and feel those feelings of “why even try?!”
Even foods touted as healthy can still cause you discomfort. Bloating is our bodies attempt to let us know it disagrees with something we gave it and can be a big clue to the types of foods you should cut down on or avoid.
Here are a few of the main culprits when it comes to foods that can cause bloating…
Beans are great for protein and good carbs, but many of them contain a type of sugar in the FODMAP group (fermentable oligo-, di-, mono-saccharides, and polyols). If you have digestive issues, beans can cause gas as they digest which gives you that unpleasant, bloated belly. Soaking the beans can usually help, but if you’re in a hurry, choose pinto or black beans — they’re easier to digest.
Another high protein legume with loads of fiber, lentils can also bring on the bloat. Choosing the light-colored lentils is a better option for keeping that bloating under control.
Whole wheat has always touted as a healthier alternative, but it doesn’t sit well with a lot of people due to the gluten it contains. If you have a sensitivity to gluten, your gut will show it by bloating after consuming wheat products. Wheat also has a high probability of containing Glyphosate (think Round-Up), which is sprayed on wheat just prior to harvest. In fact, most non-organic wheat is contaminated with it. It’s even had crossover into organic wheat. Wheat also has FODMAPs, as we discussed above, so if you’ve shown a tendency to bloat after eating wheat products, you should look for gluten-free options like quinoa, buckwheat, pure oats, or things made with almond or coconut flour.
While cruciferous veggies like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and brussels sprouts are incredibly healthy, they can lead to stomach inflation. Cooking them makes them much easier to digest, but if that still doesn’t seem to help, focus more on spinach, lettuce, zucchini, cucumbers, and sweet potatoes.
Garlic and onions
Some people feel they just can’t live without either one of these. These two are great for flavoring just about anything you can cook up in your kitchen. Truth is, they may not work for you. If eating either of them raw sets you off, you should make sure they’re cooked first. If that still doesn’t do the trick, you should try swapping them out for fresh herbs like thyme, basil, chives, or parsley to keep your dishes flavorful.
If you’ve noticed bloating coming on after eating yogurt, cheese, butter, or drinking milk, switch to lactose-free dairy products to get all the flavor without the agony. Most people can’t process dairy well at all. In fact, it’s one of the first things I recommend you give up if you want to re-gain your health. There are so many dairy-free options out there why not give one of those options a shot and see how much better you feel. Milk, in particular, has many other alternatives like almond milk, coconut milk, oat milk, or cashew milk.
Just because certain foods are healthy doesn’t mean they are helping you out. If you frequently bloat after eating, keep a journal of what you eat and write down when you get bloated. You’ll be able to identify the offender. It may be some other healthy foods that didn’t even make our list. In order to become a true advocate for your health, one of the first steps is to learn more about your body and the best foods to feed it.
Do certain things tend to bloat you more than others? If you have common offenders or would like more information, I may have some useful tricks up my sleeve! Let’s connect and start your health conversation.