When you have abdominal bloating, your abdomen may feel full, tight, or painful. It may also look bigger than normal or swollen (distended). Common causes of abdominal bloating include:

  • Swallowing air.
  • Constipation.
  • Problems digesting food.
  • Eating too much.
  • Irritable bowel syndrome. This is a condition that affects the large intestine.
  • Lactose intolerance. This is an inability to digest lactose, a natural sugar in dairy products.
  • Celiac disease. This is a condition that affects the ability to digest gluten, a protein found in some grains.
  • This is a condition that slows down the movement of food in the stomach and small intestine. It is more common in people with diabetes mellitus.
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). This is a digestive condition that makes stomach acid flow back into the oesophagus.
  • Urinary retention. This means that the body is holding onto urine, and the bladder cannot be emptied all the way.

Eating and drinking

  • Avoid eating too much.
  • Try not to swallow air while talking or eating.
  • Avoid eating while lying down.
  • Avoid these foods and drinks:
    • Foods that cause gas, such as broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and baked beans.
    • Carbonated drinks.
    • Hard candy.
    • Chewing gum.


  • Take over-the-counter and prescription medicines only as told by your health care provider.
  • Take probiotic medicines. These medicines contain live bacteria or yeasts that can help digestion.
  • Take coated peppermint oil capsules.


  • Try to exercise regularly. Exercise may help to relieve bloating that is caused by gas and relieve constipation.

General instructions

  • Keep all follow-up visits as told by your health care provider. This is important.
  • You have nausea and vomiting.
  • You have diarrhoea.
  • You have abdominal pain.
  • You have unusual weight loss or weight gain.
  • You have severe pain, and medicines do not help.
  • You have severe chest pain.
  • You have trouble breathing.
  • You have shortness of breath.
  • You have trouble urinating.
  • You have darker urine than normal.
  • You have blood in your stools or have dark, tarry stools.
  • Abdominal bloating means that the abdomen is swollen.
  • Common causes of abdominal bloating are swallowing air, constipation, and problems digesting food.
  • Avoid eating too much and avoid swallowing air.
  • Avoid foods that cause gas, carbonated drinks, hard candy, and chewing gum.

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About Genomic Medicine UK

Genomic Medicine UK is the home of comprehensive genomic testing in London. Our consultant medical doctors work tirelessly to provide the highest standards of medical laboratory testing for personalised medical treatments, genomic risk assessments for common diseases and genomic risk assessment for cancers at an affordable cost for everybody. We use state-of-the-art modern technologies of next-generation sequencing and DNA chip microarray to provide all of our patients and partner doctors with a reliable, evidence-based, thorough and valuable medical service.

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