Belly bloat can be highly unflattering and uncomfortable. Sadly, we all suffer from it from time to time depending on our lifestyle and what we eat. But many of us do everything right and still suffer from food allergies or intolerances that we know little to nothing about.
Arguably, these allergies could have always existed, but the evolution of modern science and medicine has allowed us to be more knowledgeable about this subject and to help us find ways to combat it. In hindsight, my observation is that often the symptom is treated not the problem.
I am a person who suffers from dairy and gluten intolerances as well as several other digestive issues. I saw a specialist in homeopathic medicine and, to be honest, it was the best thing I ever did. Stomach aches and bloat have been the bulk of my pain along with body shame and embarrassment. It is not the greatest feeling to look at yourself in the mirror and feel totally bloated (you see yourself how you feel- HUGE). You carry the bloat in your gut region which can make you look and feel distended and what’s worse than feeling bad about yourself, a lot of times, your digestive track (stomach, kidneys, small and large intestine) is responsible for other ailments in the body that you didn’t even think were related. For instance, you can carry a lot of water weight, your body can lack muscle definition, your skin can look dull, etc. Oddly, I habitually have cold feet and hands and very dark circles under my eyes which I later learned was related to the amount of toxicity I was carrying in my gut.
My doctor put me on a strict diet called Low FODMAP along with eliminating dairy and gluten. We eventually had to send a sample of my lovely excrement to a lab for testing. Let me tell you this was not the highlight of my Saturday afternoon. I will spare you the graphic details; however, the story is quite good. Imagine trying to collect this kind of sample… I am a clean freak and have a high gag reflex, so this was jam packed with shame and disgust as well as a bit of humor [I would imagine] if you were a fly on the wall. Let’s just leave it at I saran wrapped my toilet seat…. #horrifying
All for a good cause in the end. I learned a ton about what was happening in my body. My problem is enzyme imbalance and food intolerances. Cutting out certain foods like garlic, onion, processed foods, certain fruits, etc. helped a ton since some foods are triggers. I also take several enzyme and probiotics to assist digestion and reduce bloat. The bloat comes from your body trying to break something down that it can’t. Our bodies produce many different types of bacteria and when they are imbalanced we feel sick. If you have a parasite (which is more common that many of us know) then you will need to take something more specific to treat it. There are many different types of parasites and a lot of MDs don’t look very hard beneath the obvious ones (make sure you have a doctor who will dig deep). My levels of E. Coli and Streptococcus were very high (which increases IBS like symptoms). According to Medical Medium if you are a carrier of strep it can invade the colon and cause IBS or trigger other intestinal conditions. It can also live in your lymphatic system causing acne, effect your menstrual cycle, cause pelvic inflammation or bacterial vaginosis, amongst many others. The problem with Western Medicine is they are generally trained to treat the symptom not the problem. It is strange to think of a series of unrelated events being part of the same issue- your gut health. Furthermore, our digestive tract is so large one must look at it in its totality. In my case, I also had low fat count, my immune system response was half of what it should be due to stress, and I had high intestinal inflammation from the IBS. My doctor told me if I didn’t get ahold of this I would likely have Crohn’s disease later in life.
So…. What did he give me as a treatment plan? See image below for what I was treated with.
I also was having regular colonics. I believe that your body holds onto things especially if there is anything emotional happening in your life. If you want to start from ground zero, you may want to consider this type of treatment. It is not for everyone and can be very vulnerable feeling, but I feel strongly about how much it has helped. The last thing I will say about my entire experience is that mind over matter does play a role here; you must believe and trust that it will work, and this type of treatment plan can help you.
I had stomach aches and bloat, and, because of my change in diet, the supplements I started taking, and regular colonics I now feel so much better. I am the last person that wanted to see a doctor and the commitment to this treatment plan is extensive since it is gradual, but I believe you work towards fixing the problem not just feeling better. It is totally worth it in the end.