Weight Gain and Bloating: All you need to know

Bloating is frequently misdiagnosed as weight gain. But what exactly is the distinction between bloating and weight gain? To begin, bloating is caused by a transient buildup of gas in your digestive tract. Second, it might cause your belly to appear enlarged. Weight gain, on the other hand, happens when you increase fat or muscle mass. However, you may gain weight and develop bloating. This might imply an underlying health problem. Understanding the distinction between bloating and weight gain is critical for correctly analyzing changes in one’s BMI.

What is bloating?

Bloating happens when gas becomes trapped in your stomach, giving you the sensation of being pumped full of air. “Bloating frequently refers to an accumulation of gas in the abdomen, resulting in a full or tight sensation.”

However, bloating is not a permanent cause of weight gain; rather, it is a transitory condition in the body that may be alleviated by measures such as dietary adjustments.

Difference between bloating and weight gain

Weight gain and bloating are produced by various factors and are hence mainly unrelated.

The rate at which bloating and weight gain appear is one of the most significant distinctions. If you’ve gained weight, it’ll be a more progressive process over time (due to a calorie excess, decreased physical activity, an underlying hormonal imbalance, an increase in stressful inputs, or anything else), whereas bloating might strike you like a ton of bricks.

The simplest way to tell the difference is if you woke up with a flat tummy and concluded the day with it feeling firm and full of air—this is bloating, not weight gain.

Causes Of Abdominal Bloating

Bloating is caused mostly by gas buildup in the gastrointestinal tract, which extends from the mouth to the anus and includes the digestive system. A bloated stomach feels full, tight, unpleasant, or (rarely) painful.

In a survey of 88,795 patients, 13.9% experienced bloating in the previous week. 58.5% of those who noticed bloating never sought medical attention, and 29% reported self-managing their bloating or being uncomfortable communicating symptoms with their healthcare providers.

It is a transient syndrome produced by some meals, particularly those that are difficult for the stomach to digest, and can lead to weariness at times. The most prevalent explanations are as follows:

  • Aerophagia (breathing in air) caused by fasting, smoking, consuming carbonated beverages, and chewing gum
  • Consumption of high-fiber foods such as lentils, beans, and vegetables such as cabbage and Brussels sprouts
  • Overgrowth of bacteria, constipation, and sugar and lactose intolerance
  • Scleroderma is an example of an autoimmune disease.
  • bowel or bladder obstruction
  • IBS is an abbreviation for Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
  • Infection or inflammation (for example, diverticulitis)

Signs That Water Weight Is Making You Bloat

Water retention might make you feel heavier and bloated than normal. Skin indentation (when pressing the skin for a minute), weight swings, stiff joints, swollen feet, legs, and ankles, puffiness of the face, belly, and hips, and constant boating, especially in the stomach area are all warning indications.

Prevent Bloating At Home

To reduce bloating

  • To avoid swallowing air, avoid chewing gum and drinking water through a straw.
  • Limit your intake of foods like lentils, dry beans, and cabbage vegetables.
  • Limit your consumption of carbonated beverages.
  • Consume your food slowly and thoroughly.
  • Stick to meals high in protein and complex carbohydrates.

Long-Term Solutions For Bloating

Treatment And Medications

If bloating is caused by an underlying ailment, it is preferable to see a doctor. The doctor will identify the reasons of bloating and provide a personalized treatment strategy. Endoscopy, breath testing, and small intestine imaging may be used to determine the specific cause. Depending on the findings, they may recommend over-the-counter drugs, dietary and lifestyle changes, laxatives, antispasmodics, antibiotics, and prokinetic agents.

Reduce Salt Intake

Excess sodium promotes water retention, resulting in a puffy and bloated sensation in the abdomen and other parts of the body, such as the hands and feet. Bloating can be relieved by limiting your sodium consumption.

Consume Probiotics

Probiotics contain gut-friendly microorganisms that can aid digestion and avoid bloating. Include probiotic items in your diet such as yogurt/curd, kefir, sauerkraut, pickles, kombucha, kimchi, and buttermilk.

Warning Signs


Ascites is a disorder that causes fluid collection in the abdomen or pelvis, resulting in bloating and weight gain. Ascites can be a sign of major consequences such as liver disease, renal failure, or malignancy.

It is suggested that you visit your doctor if you observe any of these symptoms or are taking medicine that produces unpleasant side effects such as bloating and weight gain. They may be able to treat the illness more effectively by recommending a different drug or treatment.

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Blood In Stool Or Vaginal Bleeding

Conditions that cause severe bloating include vaginal bleeding between periods, blood in the stool, and postmenopausal vaginal bleeding. Consult a doctor very once to rule out any gastrointestinal issues or cancer, particularly uterine or colon cancer.

High Fever

Fever that comes with bloating is frequently caused by an infection or inflammation.

Severe Pain In The Abdomen

A bowel blockage may be indicated by severe stomach discomfort and bloating, as well as nausea and vomiting. To avoid possible problems, this requires rapid medical intervention. The colon above the blocked section extends as it fills with food and digestive secretions, creating acute pain and digestive discomfort.

Weight Loss

Consult a doctor if you observe abrupt weight loss and bloating without making any dietary adjustments or exercising. It might be caused by tumors or overgrowth pressing on the intestines, causing you to feel bloated or full after only a modest amount of food.

Bottom Line

Bloating is caused by gas buildup and has no bearing on weight gain. This brief shift may vanish once the gas has been eliminated from your system. Persistent bloating and abdominal edema, however, along with unexpected weight gain, may suggest underlying medical issues. If you observe any of these symptoms, contact your doctor.

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