Understanding the Link Between Gut Health and Bloating: Exploring the Causes and Solutions

by Dr. Nick Zyrowski August 04, 2023

You may have noticed your belly getting a little bigger, but wouldn’t describe yourself as overweight. Even if you do, there may be underlying causes that add to the problem. Many conditions can be associated with poor gut health, but natural solutions will change the way you look and how you feel from the inside out. In this article, we will show you some simple ways to shrink your stomach and the problems that could be causing it to help you avoid future issues.

Gut Irritations

If you have inflammation in the gut lining, you’ll end up with stomach distention. Some of the symptoms of gut irritation can be a gnawing or burning feeling in your upper abdomen. Many people begin having nausea or vomiting in more extreme cases. You may also notice you feel full after eating a small amount. (1)

When irritation is the problem, you may need to repair your gastrointestinal lining. One of the most beneficial ways to do this is to give your gut the nutrients it needs. When you do this, your gastrointestinal lining will begin to heal. One of the tools you can use to help with this is GI Repair, which contains a limited number of ingredients that will support gut restoration.

Digestive Problems

You may be one of many people who suffer from digestive issues, including food allergies, intolerances, and constipation. If you have these problems, you probably experience bloating and discomfort often. Another symptom of digestive problems is excess gas that makes bloating worse. (2)

Another problem associated with digestive issues is acid reflux. That has led many people to begin a course of digestive enzymes, but the products are not all the same. If you have digestive problems, you may want to try a Complete Enzyme that includes numerous clinically studied enzymes to help break down food. By utilizing a broad spectrum of digestive enzymes, you’ll get better support for healthy food absorption. These enzymes are critical for turning food into fatty acids, amino acids, and cholesterol.


Many people have trouble with gut bacteria, and bloating will be a result of this. If this is the problem, simply cleaning up your diet won’t fix the issue alone. Unhealthy bacteria can also cause nutrient deficiencies because it eats up the nutrition meant for your body. One of the reasons so many people have an issue with bacteria is because of their diet. Sugar is one of the items that will feed that unhealthy bacteria, causing it to grow and become a bigger problem. After a while, this will cause an imbalance in your microbiome. (3)

Excess sugar can lead to severe health conditions, so you want to reduce or eliminate it from your diet, especially if you are experiencing bloating or other stomach problems. Working to rid your gut of bad bacteria will be crucial. You can read more about how to do so here. A quality probiotic can help replenish the healthy bacteria in your gut that supports immune function and gives you a diverse microflora population in the gut microbiome.


If you have a full feeling after eating, you may have an acidity issue. That is a pH problem in the gut. After eating meals, you feel like it sits there for hours like a rock, which may mean your stomach is too alkaline. You need the proper acidity in your gut for certain bodily functions to work appropriately. (4) You won’t be able to break your food down well, which causes these uncomfortable symptoms. Low stomach acid affects your body’s natural ability to absorb nutrients, which can also lead to immune issues.

Some causes of acidity problems are stress, vitamin deficiencies, prolonged medications for acid reflux, and certain illnesses, like H. pylori infection. You should eat probiotic-rich foods, like miso, sauerkraut, and plain yogurt to help fortify your gut with good bacteria. Eat enough protein to help stimulate acid production and avoid processed foods.

Food Sensitivities

There are some foods you may develop sensitivities to for different reasons. These could include healthy foods, like certain fruits or vegetables. This issue can be hard to pinpoint, so keeping a food journal will be helpful to determine what is causing you the most problems. You might also consider an at-home food sensitivities test. It’s important to note that you may not have an allergy to these foods. Once your gut health improves, you may be able to eat these foods again. Your body may be having a difficult time digesting specific foods right now. (5)

After you figure out which foods your body is sensitive to, you’ll want to remove those from your diet. Food sensitivities can cause not only bloating, but diarrhea, stomach pain, and nausea. You may need to find alternatives for the foods you are sensitive to, like lactose-free items, if you have issues with dairy.


Rarely, a more severe issue could be ascites. Ascites is a condition where fluid collects in the spaces within your abdomen and can be painful. One of the most common causes of this is cirrhosis of the liver. (6)

Many people notice sudden weight gain, heartburn, and nausea. You’ll need to work with your doctor to relieve these symptoms and reverse the problem. Ascites can be a complex issue, so you want to take it seriously.

Simple Strategies

When we mention simple strategies, we don’t want you to confuse that with fast treatments. Gut health takes time to improve, so these strategies can help, but you should give them time to reverse the problems.

Intermittent fasting

Bacteria can be responsive to fasting. Many people find that a 12-16 hour fast improves their gut microbiome. Intermittent fasting can provide a reset for your gut because it gives your body a break and helps with inflammation. (7)

Cutting out sugar

We touched on this briefly, but sugar is horrible for your gut. It causes inflammation and feeds the bad bacteria that cause immune issues. Most stomach problems will be relieved by removing sugar from your diet.

Removing certain foods

Once you figure out which foods you are sensitive to, you’ll want to remove them from your diet while you improve your gut microbiome. Once you do this, you’ll notice significant changes in how you feel and how much bloating you have.

Eat a clean diet

An unhealthy diet that contains lots of processed foods and seed oils will cause you to have gut irritations. You want to eat a whole-food diet without artificial foods, colors, and flavorings. If you see ingredients that you don’t recognize, you should avoid them. We recommend shopping the perimeter of the grocery store to find the healthiest foods, like meats, veggies, some dairy, and fruits.

A Combined Approach

As we mentioned, fixing your gut health can be a complex situation. It could be that you need to stack these strategies and even try them all to see which ones help you the most. If you’re experiencing particularly tough gut issues, you might benefit from a combined approach that uses all of these for the best results.

Serious distention can cause lots of frustration. It can also be hard to find the answer to the problem since our modern healthcare system has little to offer in the way of help. What you need is not another prescription that makes the issue worse. Instead, you want a natural solution that reduces bloating and the problems associated with your gut microbiome. For sustainable results, these strategies are the best ways to see dramatic improvements in your health. As always, we are here to help with free resources and holistic programs to help you obtain better overall wellness. Contact us to learn how functional medicine can get you on the right track today.

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Dr. Nick Zyrowski
Dr. Nick Zyrowski