Can Coffee Cause Bloating?

You may look forward to that first cup of coffee every morning, but little do you know this cup of coffee may be sabotaging that flat stomach you’re hoping for. Some foods that you eat can lead to bloating and result in discomfort and swollen bellies.

Most of us have experienced the feeling of being bloated, when your tummy is stretched, puffy and uncomfortable.

Coffee can cause temporary bloating because it is acidic. This is especially true if you are lactose intolerant and you add milk or cream to your coffee. You should strategically avoid drinking coffee before presentations or other activities where a lot of eyes will be on you.

Why Does Coffee Cause Bloating

Coffee has an effect on your digestive tract due to the acidic nature of coffee. This results in bloating, especially in people that a predisposed to digestive issues. This is accentuated by anything you add to your coffee, this includes milk, sugar, creamer, etc. While it is proven that coffee helps you lose weight in the short term coffee can make you look bloated you won’t be at your best!

Coffee of any kind can overexcite the digestive tract and may stimulate spasms in the bowel that cause bloating.

Dr. Roger Gebhard

A doctor can usually diagnose if you suffer from bloating through a physical exam in the doctor’s office. They can tell you and find out if you have temporary or occasional bloating. Bloating is usually not a serious issue, but sudden bloating can be a red flag that tells you that something needs to be investigated.

Coffee encourages colon movements in many drinkers and its effects are similar to eating a full meal. This is because coffee stimulates gastrin release and gastric acid secretion. As a result, after a cup of coffee it is common to have a bowel movement shortly after.

There are people who will be more sensitive to coffee and those people may suffer from bloat and even heartburn. However, there were studies done that showed coffee was healthy for the gut. This is because it promoted greater gut diversity and there was a link between caffeic acid and the diversity of gut bacteria. The more diverse the gut bacteria is the more healthy.

How to Prevent Coffee Bloating

The causes of bloating are usually unknown, and one person’s poison can be another person’s medicine. Different people have different tolerances and will reactive differently to different foods and drinks.

One way to help prevent bloating is to not drink coffee on an empty stomach. The acidity of the coffee can irritate your gut lining which can lead to pain or bloating.

Another way to avoid bloating when drinking coffee is to drink your coffee black. Milk or cream can cause bloating and stomach problems in people that cannot digest lactose. Even a slight degree of lactose intolerance can cause bloating. A study done by Curtin University found that people who drank milk with 100% A1 protein suffered from inflammation and bloating. Those that drank milk with 100% A2 protein showed no symptoms or bloating.

Make sure to drink enough water after you drink your coffee. The caffeine in the coffee can cause dehydration which slows down digestion and lets gasses build up. This can lead to blockages and bloating.

Cut down on the coffee. If you are drinking too many cups of coffee the caffeine and cortisol can build up in your body and cause bloat. Too much of a good thing can still be bad!

Skip the sugar in your coffee. Sorbitol and fructose which as common sugars can cause bloating. This is because the body cannot digest these sugars easily and they cause gastrointestinal distress. If you are using these sugars in your coffee it may be the reason why you are feeling bloated.

Foods That You Can Eat With Coffee to Reduce Bloat

If you are eating your breakfast with a cup of coffee, here are some foods that you can combine with coffee to reduce bloating. The most important thing is water to digest the food and move the food through your GI tract. Always drink water after your coffee.

Yogurt

Yogurt is packed with good bacteria that can help your digestive tract and reduce inflammation. Probiotics are important for gut health. However, for those who are lactose intolerant you can try kefir.

Fruits

Most fruits have beneficial nutrients or acidity that can help your stomach with digestion. The juice is also made of water which helps flush the body and relieve bloating. Some fruits that can help are:

  • Bananas – Contains potassium which helps reduce bloat
  • Lemons – The acidic juice helps you digest and relieves bloating and helps with indigestion.
  • Cantaloupe – Cantaloupes are 90% water which helps reduce dehydration and reduces bloat.
  • Avocado – Yes avocados are fruit, and they are also a source of potassium and antioxidants that help prevent bloat.
  • Kiwi – Kiwis contain actinidin which speeds up digestion as well as potassium and fiber which reduce bloat.
  • Papaya – Papayas contain papain which also helps with digestion, especially for women during the menstrual cycle. Papayas are also a source of Vitamin A which is an anti-inflammatory.
  • Pineapple – Pineapples are a source of bromelain which is another enzyme that helps with digestion. It helps with breaking down proteins which reduces bloat.
  • Blueberries – Blueberries are high in water and full of antioxidants which can help with digestion.
  • Watermelon – Watermelon is 90% water and is a very easy way to rehydrate and flush out the bloat.
  • Oranges – Oranges are full of potassium, water, and fiber. These 3 things work together to remove bloat and promote healthy digestion.
  • Grapefruit – Like oranges, grapefruit contains water, potassium, and fiber and helps remove bloat.
  • Pomegranate – Pomegranates contain potassium and fiber if you consume the seeds. This helps with digestion and bloat prevention.

Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate can help you with bloat as well as satisfy your sweet tooth. There are bacteria in the dark chocolate that are anti-inflammatory and good for your body. It is produced by the fermentation and production of the dark chocolate.

Oatmeal

All grains including oats are bloat removing. However, oats are the best and are part of a healthy breakfast. Oats are high in fiber and protein. They are easily dissolved in water and help with digestion. However, if you switch from a lower fiber diet you can see a short period of increased bloat when your body adjusts to the higher fiber diet.

Conclusion

While you may feel a bit bloated after a cup of coffee it is nothing to worry about. Coffee stimulates the digestive tract and promotes a healthy gut.

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