We’ve all been there. You’ve had a heck of a night on the town and threw back some drinks, and now this morning you’re paying the price. You’ve got a hangover, pounding headache, dehydrated, can’t get out of bed. On top of all that, you’re gassy and bloated. Ever notice that? It’s a terrible feeling in your gut. What causes all that excessive gas after you drink alcohol? We’ll address that question below.
What Causes Excessive Gassiness After Alcohol?
First, let’s address what that bloating is. Bloating is caused by gas forming in your digestive system and getting trapped there. This builds up pressure in the stomach and quite a bit of discomfort. This bloat is the result of either swallowing air or a difficulty digesting certain foods or drinks.
We’re all familiar with the term “beer belly”, the fat around the belly that is associated with heavy drinkers. Beer, and most any type of alcohol, is loaded with calories and sugars that can lead to weight gain in this area. Besides leading to an increase in size in the waistline, alcohol can also cause gastrointestinal issues in the form of gassiness and bloating.
Related reading: How to Lose Belly Fat
The excessive gas from drinking is because alcohol is an inflammatory, bringing about swelling in the body when consumed. On top of the alcohol itself, this side effect is further exacerbated by the other elements in the drink (sugars, carbonation), all of which contribute further to the bloating and discomfort.
Beyond just being inflammatory, alcohol also makes you dehydrated. When the body gets dehydrated, it goes into a protection. The vital organs and skin attempt to hold onto as much water as possible, which manifests in swelling in the gut. You’ll also see it visible in the face area as well.
How to Treat Alcohol Bloat
If you’re experiencing excessive gas and bloat from drinking, there are a few things you can do. The first is cutting down on your alcohol consumption. Now, that doesn’t get rid of the discomfort if the damage is already done, but it can help prevent future bouts of unease in your gut. Your body is only capable of metabolizing so much alcohol at a time, so slowing your pace and limiting the quantity you drink can help you have a much better day after drinking.
If you’re experiencing bloating, one thing you can do is drink a lot of water. As mentioned above, dehydration is a cause of the swelling you’re experiencing. Replenish your body with fluids so you can get your body out of protection mode and back to normal. Consuming water before, during, and after drinking alcohol is recommended to ward off the inflammatory effects. We talk more about water and weight loss on this page.
You may also want to drink more slowly next time, as the gas can be a result of swallowing air. This can occur when drinking too quickly. Take your time and enjoy your drink. It’s not a race. Also, stay away from beer and carbonated drinks. These liquids release carbon dioxide into your body, leading to those bubbles in your gut.