Why does coffee bloat me?

Drinking a cup of coffee is a daily routine for most people. For some of us though, our morning cup of joe can cause uncomfortable stomach bloating. There are a variety of reasons why you may experience bloating and although not all of them may be down to coffee, there’s a good chance they might be.

Here are some of the common causes of bloating after drinking coffee and what you can do to try and fix this issue.

Your stomach is sensitive to the acid in coffee

Your stomach runs on acids. These acids help break down what you eat. Too much of these acids cause gastrointestinal discomforts, such as belching and bloating. Some experts claim that coffee causes acid reflux, yet other researchers and health professionals have disproven the connection between coffee and acid reflux.

If coffee acid seems to be causing you issues, here are some of the things you can do to enjoy your cup of coffee without experiencing stomach discomforts:

1. Find low acid coffee

Reducing the acids in coffee can help reduce stomach discomfort. To continue enjoying a cup of coffee without having to struggle with bloating and other stomach disorders, opt for coffee beans that are known to be lower on the acidity scale. The best coffee beans that are lower on acid levels are those grown in low altitudes.

2. Cold brewing

Brewing your coffee in cold water instead of hot is a great way to reduce the acidity of the final product. In fact, cold brewing can reduce the acid levels of your coffee by up to 66%.

Your stomach is sensitive to caffeine

lady with stomach ache

The caffeine in coffee may be encouraging your stomach to produce more acid than usual. Coffee itself is not too acidic, but it has caffeine, which may cause acid production in the stomach to spike. Caffeine molecules on their own are known to cause stomach irritation, which can in turn have a laxative effect. What is happening here is that your body is doing its best to get the caffeine out of your body as quickly as possible.

For the majority of coffee lovers, caffeine is the main cause of stomach bloating. Coffee has multiple health benefits, and you might be wondering how you can counteract the caffeine's discomforts and continue enjoying your coffee. Here are some tips that will help reduce bloating after drinking a cup of coffee:

1. Drink less coffee

If you are drinking more than three cups of coffee every day, you may want to think about cutting that down to one or two. In fact, the FDA recommends drinking not more than 400 milligrams of coffee per day, but those with bloating may want to consider drinking even less than that.

2. Try speciality-grade decaf

A specialty-grade decaf is the best option for people experiencing stomach discomforts after drinking coffee because it has 97% less caffeine compared to other coffees. It is also the best option if you want to drink coffee at night and still get in some quality sleep.

3. Eat a banana

Bananas are alkaline. Eating a banana after drinking coffee can help cancel out the harshness of extra acids created by caffeine in coffee. Bananas also contain some substances that help soothe the stomach on their own.

You are drinking coffee on an empty stomach

No matter who you are, if you drink coffee on an empty stomach, you are going to run into some stomach problems. Coffee has a laxative effect. If you drink it on an empty stomach, those extra acids and caffeine will likely upset your stomach.

Beginning your day with a cup of coffee is a great ritual thanks to the caffeine putting a spring in your step. However, on an empty stomach, this can be the root of several stomach issues. Be sure to always drink your coffee after eating.

Tips for dealing with bloating

lady doing planking with coffee on the side

We have all experienced bloating at some point in life. Your abdomen feels full and tight due to a buildup of gas somewhere in your gastrointestinal tract. It makes your stomach look larger and feel painful or tender. Here are some tips that will help you get rid of a bloated belly quickly:

1. Walk

Physical activities such as walking get the bowels moving more regularly, allowing your body to release the excess gas or stool. A 30 minutes walk can provide fast relief from gas pressure.

2. Yoga poses

Some yoga poses help to position the muscles of your abdomen in a way that encourages the release of gas and stool from your gastrointestinal tract. Squats, Child's pose, and Happy baby pose are the best yoga poses that will help relieve the buildup of gas in your stomach more quickly.

3. Abdominal massage

Massaging your abdomen is a great way to encourage bowel movements. A massage following the path of the large intestines is helpful when it comes to getting rid of bloating.

For better results, place your hands above the right hip bone and rub in circular motions with a light pressure towards the right rib cage. If massage causes more discomfort, stop right away and seek medical attention.

4. Take a warm bath

Taking a warm bath will provide relief for a sore abdomen. It also reduces stress levels allowing your gastrointestinal tract to function more effectively and reduce bloating.

5. Take gas relief capsules

Simethicone liquid and pills are medications which help you get rid of excess gas in your gastrointestinal tract. You can get Simethicone and other gas relievers from your nearest drug store or online.

6. Take peppermint capsules

Peppermint oil capsules help in treating irritable bowel movements whose symptoms include bloating. Peppermint will help you get rid of bloating by relaxing your intestinal muscles which then allow gas and stool in your gastrointestinal tract to move more effectively. You can buy peppermint capsules in the nearest drug store or online. If you are prone to heartburn, peppermint capsules may not be the right fit for you.