Why Your 'Healthy' Eating Habits Are Making You Bloated

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To feel incredible inside and out, you sometimes need a little help from your community. That’s why mindbodygreen has teamed up with our friends at NutriBullet LEAN to arm you with the knowledge and inspiration you need to achieve your most radiant, confident body ever. Read on to reach your healthy weight the beautiful, balanced way. For even more support, sign up for free weekly healthy weight-loss tips from NutriBullet LEAN’s on-staff dietitians. Sign up here to start receiving tips today, and enjoy a special 20% discount with code MBG20!

You try to eat healthy, but post-meal, your waistband's super tight, your stomach feels uncomfortably full, and your belly seems to be doing its best impression of a balloon. Bloating is common, but it's totally preventable! Read on to discover the three most common causes of bloating, and how to sidestep each one—so that after eating, you'll feel sated and comfortable, not gassy and puffed-up.

BLOAT BLUNDER: You're scarfing a huge meal.

Overeating is one of the most common causes of bloat, which makes sense: The food shoots straight into your torso and temporarily bulks up the area. Remember: Even as you're filling up on healthy, balanced meals (like fish and roasted vegetables or a delicious grain bowl), portion size is key. (That's why the NutriBullet LEAN weight loss system focuses on eating just the right foods in the right amounts using portion-perfect recipes and accessories.)

Eating too fast also ups the risk of bloating, because you'll swallow air along with that delicious food. Remember: It can take up to 20 minutes for feelings of fullness to reach the brain and tamp down hunger, so eat slowly, take breaks, and say no to automatic seconds.

BLOAT BLUNDER: You're overdoing it on healthy (but bloat-inducing!) foods.

When you're trying to mindfully lose weight, you know the drill: loads of nutrient-rich vegetables at the center of every meal. Health- and calorie-wise, that's a smart approach, but going gangbusters on fresh produce on Day 1 of a new healthy-eating plan can put you on the fast track to Bloat City USA. Here's why: Roughage (as well as whole grains and some enriched snacks) contains major doses of fiber, an indigestible carbohydrate.

That's part of what makes these foods so healthy: Their fiber fills you up and zips through your system without being digested and turned into energy or fat. But fiber is hard for your body to process, so abruptly increasing the amount you're taking in can cause bloating, gas, and constipation. Instead of going wild, try to gradually increase the fiber in your diet so your body has time to adjust. And drink loads of water with every fiber-rich meal; it'll help your digestive system move the fiber along smoothly.

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BLOAT BLUNDER: You're inflaming your system.

While fiber can gum up your system, other (totally healthy!) foods can irritate it. That's because these foods contain compounds your body can digest well, so the foods have to be metabolized by bacteria in your intestines, a process that irritates your gut and produces extra gas: Hello, bloating, pain, and even diarrhea or constipation.

Try cutting out problem foods to see if your bloating clears up. Common culprits include: cruciferous veggies (such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, asparagus, and Brussels sprouts), beans and lentils (there's a reason they're called "the magical fruit!"), fruits that contain high levels of fructose (including apples, pears, watermelon, dried fruit, and juice), polyols, artificial sweeteners in sugarless products (watch nutrition labels for sorbitol, mannitol, isomalt, xylitol, and maltitol), and dairy products, especially soft ones such as milk, cream cheese, cottage cheese, sour cream, and ice cream, that contain lactose.

NutriBullet LEAN has taken out all the guesswork in avoiding inflammation and bloating in your system. The plan being gluten free and dairy free avoids common food intolerances that some people may have and focuses on proper portions throughout the day to keep you from overeating without having you ever feel hungry.

Sign up for weekly weight loss tips from one of the NutriBullet registered dietitians. You’ll receive three tips right away when you provide your email.

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