Why Do I Wake Up Bloated Every Morning? – And What to Do about it

a black and white photo of a woman in lingerie leaning on a bed bloated

Why Do I Wake Up Bloated Every Morning?

We’ve all been there: you wake up in the morning feeling like you’ve gained five pounds overnight, your stomach is protruding uncomfortably, and even your favorite pair of jeans feels snug. Bloating can be incredibly frustrating, not to mention uncomfortable.

While there are many possible causes of bloating—from overeating to certain foods or drinks—it can be tough to pinpoint the exact cause of your morning bloat.

In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the most common causes of bloating, as well as what you can do to minimize your chances of waking up feeling bloated.

What causes bloating in the morning?

CauseDescription
Swallowing AirEating or drinking quickly, chewing gum, or consuming carbonated beverages can lead to swallowing air.
OvereatingConsuming large meals or eating too close to bedtime can result in bloating the next morning.
Gas producer foodsCertain foods high in fiber, like beans, lentils, broccoli, and cabbage, can cause increased gas production.
Food IntolerancesDifficulty digesting certain foods or intolerance to specific ingredients like lactose or gluten.
ConstipationDifficulty passing stool, leading to a buildup of stool in the intestines and subsequent bloating.
Gastrointestinal DisordersMedical conditions like IBS, IBD, or GERD can contribute to persistent or severe bloating.
Hormonal ChangesHormonal fluctuations, particularly in women during the menstrual cycle, can cause bloating.
different causes of bloating in the morning

1. Intestinal gas

Intestinal gas is a normal part of digestion, but excessive gas can cause uncomfortable bloating, especially in the morning. Gas is produced in the intestines when bacteria break down food that wasn’t fully digested in the stomach.

Some foods, such as beans, wheat, and dairy, are known to produce more gas than others. Gas can build up in the intestines overnight as the digestive system continues to work, leading to bloating and discomfort in the morning.

To reduce gas production, it’s important to avoid foods that are known to cause gas, as well as behaviors that can lead to swallowing air, such as chewing gum and drinking carbonated beverages. Eating slowly and exercising regularly can also help promote healthy digestion and reduce bloating. If bloating persists or is accompanied by other symptoms, it’s important to speak with a healthcare provider to rule out any underlying conditions.

2. Poor digestion

Poor digestion can cause bloating in the morning due to several factors. One of them is the lack of digestive enzymes. Digestive enzymes are responsible for breaking down the food we eat into smaller components that our body can absorb effectively. When we don’t have enough digestive enzymes, food stays in our gut longer and can ferment, leading to gas and bloating.

3. Intake of gas-producing foods

Consuming gas-producing foods before bedtime can cause bloating in the morning. Such foods include beans, lentils, cruciferous vegetables, high-sugar fruits, and carbonated drinks. These foods are digested through fermentation, a process that produces carbon dioxide and methane gas.

You can reduce the gas-producing effects of these foods by cooking them thoroughly or soaking them before cooking. Additionally, you can try eating smaller, more frequent meals and snacks, avoiding fizzy drinks and chewing gum, and increasing physical activity to help speed up digestion.

Eating a whole food plant-based diet can also help to heal gastrointestinal issues and related symptoms. Remember to leave at least 3-4 hours between consuming these foods and going to sleep to allow for proper digestion.

4. Digestive disorders

Bloating in the morning can be a result of various digestive disorders.

  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a chronic condition that affects the large intestine. It can cause bloating, abdominal pain, and gas. Some people with IBS experience more problems with constipation, while others experience diarrhea more often.
  • Functional dyspepsia affects the stomach and is also known as indigestion. It can cause upper stomach pain or feelings of fullness, paired with bloating.
  • Coeliac disease is another disorder that can cause bloating, where eating foods containing gluten can trigger diarrhea, abdominal pain, and fatigue.
  • Stomach ulcers, cancer, or liver failure can also cause frequent indigestion, leading to bloating.

5. Intestinal infections

Intestinal infections caused by parasites and bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) can lead to bloating in the morning. These infections increase gastrointestinal volume and produce gases, leading to abdominal cramps, burping, and farting.

To prevent intestinal infections, practice good hygiene, such as washing hands regularly, cooking food thoroughly, and avoiding contaminated water sources. Additionally, maintaining a balanced gut microbiome through a healthy diet rich in fiber and probiotics can also help prevent infections.

6. Hormonal changes

Hormonal changes can cause bloating in the morning due to the natural fluctuations in hormones that occur throughout the day. During the menstrual cycle, high levels of estrogen and progesterone can cause the body to retain more water and salt, which can lead to bloating.

Additionally, progesterone can slow down digestion, leading to constipation and gas. During perimenopause, the ovaries no longer have a synchronized secretion of hormones, which can also cause water retention and bloating.

Stress can also contribute to bloating as it can affect gut motility and cause inflammation in the intestines. Pregnant women may experience bloating due to increased progesterone production and the growing baby taking up more space.

To combat bloating, it may be helpful to adapt your diet around your menstrual cycle, practice stress-reducing activities before bed like the Yoga Nidra or 478 sleep trick.

7. Intake of sugary and processed foods

Feeling bloated and uncomfortable? The culprit could be the sugary and processed foods you consumed the night before. These foods are difficult to digest and can cause discomfort, especially when eaten at night.

To reduce or eliminate the intake of these foods, opt for water or herbal tea instead of soda, and limit yourself to one soft drink per day. Eat fruit in small portions, and choose lower-sugar options like melon, peaches, and apricots.

Switching to a whole food plant-based diet or Paleo diet can also promote gut health and reduce bloating. Remember, making small changes to your diet and lifestyle can have a big impact on how you feel in the morning.

8. Food intolerances

Foods that we are intolerant to can cause inflammation in our gut, leading to bloating and discomfort. To prevent this, it’s essential to identify foods that trigger intolerances and avoid them.

What are the symptoms of waking up bloated?

1. Feeling full and bloated

Waking up feeling full and bloated can be uncomfortable and bothersome. The physical sensations that accompany bloating include abdominal discomfort, gas, and a feeling of tightness. This feeling can occur at any time, but if it persists overnight, it may be due to hormonal changes or swallowed air.

Bloating may also cause cramping and abdominal pain, making it hard to get through the day. Increased gas in the stomach can lead to burping or passing gas more frequently, which can be embarrassing.

2. Difficulty swallowing

Difficulty swallowing can be a symptom of waking up bloated. This could be due to a digestive syndrome called retrograde cricopharyngeus dysfunction (R-CPD), where people are unable to belch, causing excess morning gas. Another possible cause is aerophagia, a condition where one subconsciously swallows too much air, leading to bloating and excessive burping and farting.

To reduce or avoid aerophagia, one can try to eat and drink slowly, chew food properly, not talk while eating, and avoid carbonated beverages. Regular low-intensity exercise like yoga and staying hydrated throughout the day can also help.

3. Pain or discomfort in the abdomen

Waking up bloated can cause pain or discomfort in the abdomen due to an accumulation of gas and fluid. This feeling can occur at any time but is commonly reported after meals when the stomach has run out of room with excess gas. The increased gas in the stomach can lead to burping or passing gas more frequently, a very embarrassing symptom. It is also the cause of moving that much during your sleep.

Are Certain Bedding Materials More Likely to Cause Morning Bloating for Allergy Sufferers?

Certain bedding materials for allergy sufferers may contribute to morning bloating. Materials like down feathers or synthetic fibers can trap allergens such as dust mites, causing allergic reactions. Opting for hypoallergenic bedding materials, like those made from bamboo or organic cotton, can help alleviate morning bloating by reducing exposure to allergens during sleep.

FAQ

What supplements may help reduce morning bloat?

There are several supplements that may help reduce morning bloat, but it’s important to consult with a healthcare provider before starting a supplement routine.

Probiotic supplements can help improve gut health, while peppermint oil can ease bloating. Recommended dosages vary by product, so it’s important to follow the instructions on the label. Additionally, diaphragmatic breathing or “belly breathing” can help activate the parasympathetic nervous system, allowing the gut to relax and “rest and digest.” It’s always wise to check with your doctor before taking any new supplements or medications.

supplements that are commonly suggested to help reduce morning bloating, along with their effectiveness:

SupplementEffectiveness
ProbioticsModerate effectiveness in some individuals.
Digestive EnzymesLimited evidence; effectiveness varies.
Peppermint OilSome evidence suggests it may help with bloating in case of SIBO.
GingerLimited evidence; may provide mild relief.
FennelLimited evidence; may provide mild relief.
ChamomileLimited evidence; may provide mild relief.
Activated CharcoalLimited evidence; may help absorb gas.

What is the role of the digestive system in bloating?

The digestive system plays a crucial role in causing bloating. When we eat, food travels through the digestive tract, and the stomach and small intestine break it down into smaller particles. During this process, gas is also produced, which can accumulate and cause bloating. Certain foods, such as those high in fat or fiber, can take longer to digest, leading to a buildup of gas and bloating. Additionally, eating too quickly or not chewing food thoroughly can also contribute to bloating.

Medical conditions like lactose intolerance, celiac disease, or gastroparesis can also cause excess gas and bloating. In these cases, the gas accumulates in the small intestine and pushes the diaphragm and abdominal wall outward, leading to bloating. In some cases, bloating can occur due to body mechanics, such as poor posture while eating or swallowing air while talking.

What is the role of gut bacteria in bloat?

The balance of good and bad bacteria in the gut is crucial for maintaining a healthy digestive system. An imbalance can lead to bloating, which can be caused by bacterial infections, antibiotics, or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO).

To maintain a healthy balance of gut bacteria, it is recommended to eat foods high in probiotics such as yogurt, kimchi, and sauerkraut, as well as prebiotics found in fruits, veggies, and whole grains. Taking a probiotic supplement specifically targeting gut health can also help.

Is there a connection between morning bloating and constipation?

Morning bloating can be accompanied by constipation, which can make the abdomen feel fuller and uncomfortable. This can happen if there is undigested food in the stomach from late-night snacking, or if there has been a lack of bowel movements.

Why do i fart loud in my sleep?

It is not uncommon for people to pass gas while sleeping, and the reasons for this can vary. The body’s metabolic state while sleeping, as well as the relaxation level of the anal sphincter and pressures within the rectum, can all contribute to farting during sleep.

The coloanal and rectoanal reflexes are at work, allowing for relaxation of the internal and external anal sphincters in response to pressure waves in the rectum. However, unless there is an underlying medical reason, people typically do not lose bowel control while sleeping.

How often do you fart in your sleep?

It’s very common to pass gas during sleep, and some people may find they have more morning gas when they wake up. The anal sphincter is more relaxed during sleep, which makes it easier for gas to escape. The causes of gas during sleep are the same as they are for all farts, including swallowing air while eating and the breakdown of food in the digestive system. While passing gas during sleep is typically not a problem, it may contribute to waking up feeling bloated.

Why do i fart so much first thing in the morning?

Excessive flatulence in the morning is common and is caused by the digestive process generating gas, along with the air swallowed during the day.

Morning gas can be reduced by avoiding habits that contribute to the amount of air swallowed, such as smoking, and making lifestyle and diet changes.

Other factors like older age, diet, obesity, gastrointestinal problems, rectal injury, medications, and even the position of your body in bed can contribute to morning gas.

Why does my boyfriend fart in his sleep?

While passing gas during sleep is believed to be a boy thing, it is obvious that girls are also doing it. Trust me. 🙂

lezt

By lezt

Lez Taylor, Founder and CEO of Corala Blanket. She tried every sleep system and trick to conquer her insomnia for good.