What to wear when you’re bloated…

I’ve suffered from bloating for as long as I can remember. I always just assumed It was due to my period and my Poly-cystic Ovaries, but surely it can’t last ALL month long?! It’s funny the things you just get used to eh? I just dealt with my stomach looking like it was about to pop and adjusted my wardrobe to suit it. I always made sure I had a pair of elasticated waist trousers to hand if I was going out all day, especially if a big meal was planned, so to ensure I had enough room for when my stomach ballooned as I knew it would.

Eventually around a month ago, I had an attack of the shits and excruciatingly bad stomach cramps. Could it be the full fat latte I had, or was it the big fat burger I ate with chips earlier, or even the big bowl of porridge I had for breakfast? Or maybe it was all of that rolled in together. Anyway, I won’t go into too many details, but it was frickin’ bad. From then on I couldn’t really eat much without my stomach going mad, it was only until I realised when I seeked advice from a dietitian, that it could be IBS causing me all this distress. I was actually diagnosed with IBS around 8 years ago but they kind of advised there wasn’t much they could do to help it, so the dietitian told me about the LOW FODMAP diet and this is now the next step.

So, what do you wear if you suffer from bloating? I always wore some elasticated (or half elasticated) cigarette pants or posh joggers as these are super comfy and sit easy along your stomach. I pair these with a simple tee or jumper and some trainers. Alternatively, dungarees are good, especially if they are a little oversized and don’t sit tightly on your waist. I also wear mom or boyfriend oversized jeans (without a belt), but sometimes I get too bloated even for these. A loose flowy dress in summer is good, and soft tights actually don’t hurt too much either.

I DON’T wear tight jeans and jeans with no stretch, I don’t wear anything that doesn’t have any stretch at the waist, I don’t wear tight dresses to show off my bloated tum, or basically anything fitted. It’s lucky as my style usually consists of oversized, scandi-style stuff anyway so I’ve just become accustomed to dressing ‘comfortably, ‘however, there are times when I’d like to at least wear a pair of skinny jeans without worrying.

I’ll tell you a bit about the FODMAP diet, but If you do suffer from bloating or a poorly tummy after you’ve eaten certain foods, I would advise you consult a dietitian before you do anything. Basically, low FODMAP is where you eliminate foods that a high in certain carbohydrates, even food or veg. So for instance, onion and garlic could be a major trigger and foods that are high in lactose and fructose, oligos and polyols. Fatty foods, caffeine and alcohol could also be a trigger. I have decided to try going gluten free and lacto free to start off with and have even given up garlic as I believe this is a specific trigger for me. I won’t go in to too much detail as you will need to seek advise from a dietitian.

I have already noticed a difference since I started and my stomach seems to have deflated a little, I can even fit into these denim shorts I haven’t been able to get into for a while which is a bonus. It’s a long road ahead but it is time to stop eating all the shit and look after myself a bit more, I also have to realise that being bloated all the time doesn’t have to be a thing.

Watch this space!

Lauren xx

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