When you are pregnant, you are likely to have a lot of questions. One such would be: why do you pass gas at inconvenient times? Bloating is one of the common symptoms of pregnancy and this might be the cause behind the continuous occurrence of the incident. However, let us assure you that this is common among pregnant women and occurs less as you get closer to the end of your pregnancy.
What Causes Bloating During Pregnancy?
What is bloating in pregnancy? Bloating is a condition of excess gas in the body, something that is experienced by all pregnant women. The bloated feeling seems to make you feel discomfort in the initial weeks of pregnancy. The main cause is hormonal imbalance which is explained right below:
Progesterone hormone is essential for your body during pregnancy to remain healthy. Despite its healthy cause, it is also known to trigger bloating, burping and farting. Progesterone hormone usually relaxes smooth muscle tissues within your body and gastrointest
With the progressing pregnancy, the uterus begins to compete with the stomach and intestines for space. This also causes bloating. The uterus occupies more space in the pelvic region, and you also tend to constipate often. The hormonal changes also alter digestion and can cause weight gain too. A few other sources that contribute to bloating in the early pregnancy stages include:
During the 4th week of pregnancy, the fertilized egg implants itself in the uterine wall. Until the development of the placenta, the lining of the uterus and the blood vessels of the endometrium offer nourishment for the embryo. The endometrial lining thickens and proliferates during the early pregnancy to protect the developing embryo. A high blood flow to the womb increases the heart rate, and, therefore, uterine swelling occurs. The swollen uterus takes up more room in the pelvic region, thus causing a bloating feeling in the lower abdomen.
The food travels all through the gut and slowly reaches the intestine where it remains for a longer time. It will eventually benefit the fetus by providing all the nutritional content. The fetus absorbs all the water content of the food, thus leaving the stools dry. The dry stools take a longer time to reach the rectum, and the built-up rectal matter will increase the bloating and gas in the process.
[ Read: Home Remedies For Constipation During Pregnancy ]
Hormonal levels are responsible for many changes in the body of a pregnant woman when it prepares to support the developing fetus. Progesterone and relaxin are the two hormones that allow the pelvic area to stretch during labor. These same hormones cause constipation that slows down the rate of food passage. Naturally occurring bacteria break down the food in the intestine, thus causing gas formation. Also, pregnant women develop indigestion and heartburn, thus causing bloating.
You remain more hungry as you will take food for two. Taking nutritious diet along with vitamin supplements will increase your calorie count. Also, you will rest more and perform a less physical activity. Therefore, you feel bloated and uncomfortable with the increasing days.
What You Can Do To Prevent Bloating?
Once you are pregnant, you may find yourself passing gas more frequently than usual. However, worry not! We are here to help you know the solutions for this issue:
1. Cut Off On Refined Sugars:
Avoid drinking carbonated beverages and sweetened fruit juices as they contain high fructose corn syrup that can exacerbate bloating. If you have a sweet tooth, opt for some fresh fruits such as apricots, peaches and bananas. Also, avoid having chewing gum and slimming foods as they contain sorbitol contributing to wind and bloating.
2. Intake Foods Rich In Fiber:
Foods such as yams, rice, carrots, apples, leafy green, whole-grains, and whole wheat toast are all a good source of fiber that will absorb the water in your digestive system and move the food through your intestine. Therefore, add a decent number of fibers in your diet helping to keep your bowel movement regular. Remember, start adding fiber at a slow pace, don’t overdo because you are not used to taking so much fiber in your diet.
[ Read: Fiber Foods During Pregnancy ]
A great way to deal with bloating issue is to exercise daily, be it a walk for about 10 to 15 minutes after dinner or walk the dog as this will help you alleviate some of the annoying gas you are experiencing. If you are sitting all day, it will not allow the gas to move around and may cause bloating. Regular and mild exercise, even a brisk walk around your house or garden, can help your sluggish digestive tract.