What causes Bloating? – Part 2


Bloating is a common symptom that most people experience from time to time, but there are some people who just seem to be bloated all the time, no matter what they eat or drink. 

There are several causes, but one of the most common reasons for bloating is that we swallow too much air with our food. Chewing gum, drinking fizzy drinks, and eating too quickly all result in an increased intake of air which can exacerbate digestive symptoms.

Bloating also happens when our bodies can’t break down or digest specific food particles.

The pancreas and gallbladder are responsible for secreting an array of digestive enzymes to break down the food we eat.

When our bodies don’t produce enough enzymes to digest our food, the food ferments too high up in the digestive tract which creates a gas build-up in the lower intestines resulting in bloating, cramping, flatulence, and either diarrhea or constipation.

Foods that can cause bloating include: 

  • Carbohydrates and sugars
  • Dairy products
  • Gluten grains
  • Sulfurous foods
  • Lectins
  • FODMAP’s

Today we will focus on dairy, gluten grains, and sulfurous Foods

Dairy Products

Dairy products contain a sugar called lactose which many people can’t break down because they lack the enzyme lactase. Lactose-free products may help if it’s just the lactose that’s a problem, but if the protein casein is also causing an intolerance, then all dairy products should be avoided. If you experience any digestive discomfort, it might be worth eliminating the dairy.

Gluten Grains

The protein in wheat, rye, and barley is called gluten. In gluten-sensitive individuals, gluten attacks the lining of the gastrointestinal tract, making it leaky. Many people are unaware that they have a gluten intolerance, but, as with dairy products, if you experience frequent bloating, pain, and abdominal discomfort I would suggest eliminating gluten.

Sulfurous Foods

Cruciferous and allium vegetables are high in natural sulfurs. These include cabbage, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, broccoli, onions, and garlic. Other foods are preserved with sulfur dioxide. These include wine, dried fruit, bottled lemon juice, and salad dressings. Sulfur can cause a lot of gas and bloating in individuals whose livers can’t metabolize and detoxify the sulfurs.

Listen to my interview with Brad Kirsten from Radio Cape Pulpit on 8 September 2022 to learn more. Listen to my next interview on Thursday at 7.45am