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How to Make Your Food Baby Disappear

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Maybe you overdid it at the buffet, or accidentally ate all the cookies, and now you’ve got a protruding belly that makes you look slightly pregnant. We’ve all been there, uncomfortably carrying around a food baby post-binge. But what exactly causes the bump, and is there any way to get rid of it?

“It’s really the products of digestion stuck in your GI tract,” explains integrative gastroenterologist Robynne Chutkan, MD, author of The Microbiome Solution and The Bloat Cure. In other words, your food baby could be a combination of food matter, digestive gasses, swallowed air, and retained water. “If you overfill the GI tract, then you’ll get a back up, kind of like a highway.”

In addition to how much you eat, a food baby may also be caused by what you eat, says Dr. Chutkan. Artificial sweeteners, dairy products, and cruciferous veggies (like kale, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts) can all lead to the production of excess gas—and a ballooning mid-section.

So what can you do when your belly swells? Below are a few steps you can try to make a food baby disappear.

RELATED: 15 Foods That Help You Poop

Fuel up with liquids

Say you wake up with a food baby because you overate the night before. “The last thing you need to be doing is having steak and eggs for breakfast,” says Dr. Chutkan. Instead, opt for nourishing soups, juices, and smoothies. Liquids can help keep your food baby from growing any bigger. Dr. Chutkan recommends whipping up a green smoothie, which is full of fiber and good-for-you nutrients, and adding some papaya or pineapple. Both fruits contain enzymes that aid digestion.

Move around

Sure, flopping onto the couch and groaning is tempting. But going for a walk will do you much better, by stimulating your gut and helping move food through your large intestine. You could also do some twisting yoga poses that massage the abdomen. Or try this trick from Dr. Chutkan: Lie down and with a light dumbbell, make a large circle around your belly button, applying gentle pressure, in a clockwise direction.

Put the kettle on

Certain herbal teas can help a troubled tummy. Soothing ginger tea has been shown to ease cramps, while fennel tea should help de-puff your belly. Peppermint and chamomile are good choices, as well; both types of tea calm muscles in the GI tract, allowing gas to dissipate.

Stay regular

Food babies are extremely common, and rarely anything to worry about. But if you notice that your belly is bulging after every meal, or most meals, it could be a sign of constipation, says Dr. Chutkan. You can help your body get back on track by staying hydrated, exercising regularly, eating probiotic foods, and gradually adding more fiber to your diet (think fruits, veggies, and whole grains).

7 Disturbing Facts About a Food Baby

Nine months? Nah, it was more like nine minutes of going hog-wild at the all-you-can-eat buffet that led to the conception of that protruding, overstuffed belly that makes you look preggers. Here’s what to expect when expecting…post-binge.

Your Bump May Not Be Temporary

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Your stomach can go from holding 50 milliliters (that’s less than a shot glass) when empty to up to four liters (a little more than a gallon of milk) when full. But you’ll usually top out at 1 to 1.5 liters, the point at which most people are comfortably satisfied. “Once you consume more than this, you really start stretching the stomach wall, which causes discomfort and distention that could last a few hours,” says Ed Levine, M.D., a Connecticut-based gastroenterologist. Keep consistently overstuffing yourself, and over time your belly will adapt, growing to accommodate more and more food and liquid. “If you eat 2 liters per meal regularly, you might feel miserable the first few times, but after several months, your stomach muscles will eventually stretch out,” Levine says. And they won’t shrink back to their normal size, meaning you’ll need even more food to feel full. Obesity 101, folks.

You Don’t Need a Huge Meal to Feel Huge

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Does your belly pop straight out and feel taut, like it’s about to burst? Or is it soft and bulging at the sides, inflating the spare tire around your waist? The former may be gas, while the latter may indicate fluid retention from eating certain foods such as sodium-rich carbohydrates or the start a menstrual cycle, explains David Hudesman, M.D., director of the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Center at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City. While the majority of food babies are gas-related, it’s not always a result of overeating. You can eat a perfectly portioned meal and still become bloated, which happens when there is an increase in gas from either swallowed air or gut bacteria in the intestinal tract, Hudesman explains. Certain carbohydrates-such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, beets, cabbage, apples, figs, plums, and peaches-are much more prone to bacterial breakdown that causes gas.

RELATED: The Best Carbs for Weight Loss

The Little Nugget in Your Belly Is No Angel

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Your protruding belly may look funny at first, but eventually it’s going to start kicking-and you won’t be laughing then. You may begin to experience cramping, signaling that you’ve overdone it and your body needs relief fast. Work through the discomfort like competitive eater Yasir Salem, the reigning cannoli champion (he ate almost 32 at Little Italy’s Festa di San Gennaro Cannoli Eating Championship last year), who recommends that you imagine breathing into the cramp for one minute. “It usually goes away or becomes manageable,” he says. He also encourages taking a cue from the guys and letting out a belch. “A burp is just a bunch of gas that you’ve swallowed while eating or drinking. When you burp, you release the air in your stomach and open up space,” says Salem, who uses this technique when competing.

Your Belly Isn’t the Only Embarrassing Thing

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Hiccups are like a bratty preschooler: cute for a few seconds and then blood-boiling annoying. These breathing spasms arbitrarily occur when the diaphragm gets irritated from, say, a full stomach, but even more mortifying, a food baby may cause flatulence. Similar to bloating, farting can be triggered by overeating or simply consuming certain foods-largely carbohydrate-that don’t mix well with your gut bacteria at the time.

You’ll Need to Rethink Your Workout Plans

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Working out is probably one of the last things you want to do when you’re recovering from a feast. And-for once-you do have a good excuse to skip your activity. “When you exercise, less blood flows to your digestive tract, which slows the speed of food moving through it, leading to nausea and bloating,” Hudesman explains. If you’re going to do anything physical, make it a stroll. “Walking can increase intestinal motility, helping your stomach muscles grind up things faster and push food into your intestinal tract,” Levine says. Whatever you do, don’t lay down right after you get up from the table. Stay sitting upright for at least half an hour to aid digestion, Hudesman recommends.

RELATED: 30 Greatest Flat-Belly Tips of All Time

You Won’t Be a Glowing Mama-to-Be

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Much like actual childbirth, you will be in pain, specifically abdominal discomfort as your body works overtime to digest the obscene amount of food you just consumed. The fattier and more protein-heavy your meal, the more difficult it is to break down, so you could be facing a four- to five-hour stomach roller coaster, Levine warns. Some people encounter the added pleasure of heartburn, which occurs when the extra food in your stomach increases acid production and causes acid reflux, and there’s also a chance of nausea, Levine adds-but without any morning sickness sympathy from others.

There’s a Morning-After Pill

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But you really shouldn’t wait until the next day to pop an antacid. “One of the main effects of overeating is acid reflux, so you’ll want an over-the-counter product, like Maalox, Mylanta, or Zantac, to help you right away,” Levine says. Usually by the next morning everything you ate will have made its way through to your colon. At that point, you’re good to nosh again. Eat normally, Levine says, including your cup of tea or coffee, which can help move things out of your system.

  • By Cristina Goyanes @CDGoyanes

Admit it; you’ve had those moments of weakness when you gorged yourself with as much food as possible without breathing. Yes, all that pasta may have tasted beautiful on the way in but now, there sits a humongous lump in your stomach that causes you to waddle hopelessly around like a pregnant lady. While this waddling is taking place, the question, “Why oh why has my life come to this?” seems to be the only dialogue worth repeating.

But don’t worry! Life does not have to be like this! The food baby can be prevented with these helpful tips to refrain from over-eating:

1. Out of sight, out of mind

It may be all too tempting to eat straight out of the carton of ice cream, but scooping yourself a decent serving and putting the ice-cream back into its respective place does wonders. Now, if you want more, the draining process of having to get up and walk all the way back to the kitchen seems like too much effort. You can continue to sit and watch the rest of your show guilt-free.

2. Eat more to eat less

Photo courtesy of chowbellabycassie.blogspot.com

Have a small serving of yogurt a half hour before a meal; it’s not going to hurt you and it’ll actually partially satisfy your hunger. Mix the yogurt with almonds or granola to add some protein to fill you up partially before you indulge in a huge dinner. It’ll keep you from journeying on that guilt trip of over-eating later. Go you!

3. Be out and about!

Boredom has reigned upon all of us; that moment when you have nothing to do and the void can only be filled with food, food and more food. But hold on, there are other things in this world that can keep us entertained and physically away from that all-too tempting pantry… take a walk, phone a friend, or leave your house/apartment for a shopping spree.

If you couldn’t resist the hunger and that food baby is now in its 2nd trimester… try these tips to help deflate:

4. Speed it up, Warm it Up

Photo by Sandy Huang

Green Tea or coffees are proven to increase your metabolism (epicurious.com) which will quickly help to deflate that food baby. And the full, homey feeling you get from drinking these hot beverages will annihilate any last minute craving for more food.

5. Consolation and Forgiveness

Tell yourself it’s all going to be okay. The food baby will shrink and this will all be over soon; forgive yourself for that extra serving. Just try to remember for next time that the struggle of the food baby is real – but just to be safe, use the tips from above to prevent that food baby from resembling twins next time.

14 Side-By-Side Photos Of Food Babies That Will Make You Do A Double-Take

You know when you come across a really delicious meal, and it’s so good that you pretty much gorge on it? Like, you just keep eating and eating until it’s actually a little painful to continue, and by the time you’re done, you’re more full than you’ve ever been? It happens to the best of us! But eating this much food can cause a funny little phenomenon as well: it can give you a food baby.

At this point, chances are good that you’ve definitely heard of the term “food baby” at least a few times before.

It refers to the moment when you eat so much that your belly sticks out in a distended way to make you look like you’re carrying around, well, a baby. It’s bloating to the point of actually looking pregnant, and while it can be an incredibly strange and uncomfortable feeling, it’s also kind of amusing. Because really, it happens to the best of us.

A food baby, which is essentially just bloating, doesn’t only happen after you’ve eaten too much.

It can also occur as a reaction to something specific that you’re eating. For example, extreme bloating like this is common for people who suffer from IBS.

Luckily, food babies usually go away on their own after a little while — although sometimes they need medicine to help them along.

But in the time you have that food baby, it’s almost impossible not to snap a photo of it and share it with friends. Take a look at some food baby photos that will make you feel less alone next time you have a food baby…

1. This fitness blogger wrote about her food baby from having a “bad” day:

Fitness blogger Tiffany Brien showed off these two photos of herself, one taken in the morning, and one taken at night after a day of eating badly and not getting enough sleep.

She wrote, “We are not all what we seem on social media. I thought I would share a bad day with you to show you nobody is ‘perfect’ and it is ok to have an off day where your body just decides to not play ball.”

2. This Instagram influencer got a food baby from eating just one thing:

She wrote, “Not pregnant, just eating right 🌯🌯 BEFORE and AFTER I had a burrito.” Man, our bodies are crazy!

3. One user showed the difference between her morning belly and her night belly:

She wrote, “9AM vs 9PM after a full day of eating. Both me, both valid, both worthy.”

It’s a nice message that everyone deals with this kind of thing!

4. A Twitter user shared this extremely relatable tweet:

Who hasn’t held their swollen bloated belly and pretended there was a baby in there?

Admit it!

5. One girl responded with a similar photo:

It’s actually amazing how much this looks like a baby bump.

But it’s not!

6. This guy showed it can happen to men too:

It’s pretty clear that he’s not pregnant, right?

7. One health blogger used it as a way to discuss food intolerances:

She wrote:

“I wish this was some cute pregnancy announcement photo, but it is NOT Lol! This has been my life for the past couple of months. Eat one thing and I experience irritable bowl, stomach pain and uncomfortable bloating!”

8. This health blogger showed how different they look when they’re bloated:

They wrote, “I’ve had ‘IBS’ for a few years now and would bloat like this a few times a week, almost anything would set it off.”

Sometimes, you don’t know why it’s happening.

9. This Instagram user shared their own experience with food intolerance:

Although the caption is in a different language, it’s clear from her hashtags that she’s experiencing a food baby from eating the wrong things for her body.

Look at that difference!

10. One user showed the difference before and after a meal:

She wrote, “Hi food baby 🤰🏽👋🏼!! This is one meals difference … the bloat is real !!”

It’s kind of a cute bump!

11. This photo shows it can happen even if you have abs:

Defined stomach muscles stand no chance against bloat.

This is definitely an interesting before and after.

12. An Instagram influencer showed her contrasting photos to write about bloating:

She said, “Hands up how many of you can look around 6 months preggers just from sniffing food.”

She also brought up how it’s important to understand that this can happen to basically anyone.

13. Another fitness blogger showed off her bloated belly as well:

In her post, she explained:

14. One Instagram influencer showed how much your body can change throughout the day:

Food Baby: When One’s Stomach is so Filled With Food, They Look Pregnant

Sometimes you eat a lot, and you feel gross afterward. When you have a food baby, it is not one of those times. When you have a food baby, you ate so much, you forced your stomach to physically extend itself, so much so, it appears that you have a baby inside of you. To give you an idea, the average baby weighs something like 16 pounds. So, that means you literally ate 16 pounds. You are so utterly disgusting to your friends, family, and even a few dead relatives that you never even met. Anyway, don’t feel too bad, we’ve all had food babies, and fortunately, when you overload your body in this awful manner (you know you regret it), your bod opts to simply pass all that stuff right through you. That is not a nutritional fact, but rather, a profound warning.

Usage Examples

• Oh man, I am never going to Outback again; I have a food baby of twins!
• Is there more food, baby? I’m trying to get a food baby so that you won’t try to kiss later.
• I had a food baby so large once my stomach exploded violently and killed my bird, Stephen Hawking.

Check out other definitions of new words:
apols | a/w | babymoon | balayage | bitcoin | blondie | buzzworthy | byod | cake pop

chandelier earring | | dappy | derp | digital detox| double denim | emoji

fauxhawk | fil | flatform| FOMO | food baby | geek chic | girl crush | grats| guac | hackerspace

Internet of Things | jorts| LDR| MOOC | omnishambles | pear cider | phablet |pixie cut | selfie

space tourism | squee| srsly | street food | TL;DR | twerk |unlike | vom

Incredible ‘food baby’ photos show before and after effects of stomach bloat on former beauty queen

A fitness blogger has shown another side to the lean, perfect flat stomach she usually posts online – and revealed that the stomach bloat is entirely normal for some girls.

Former beauty queen Tiffany Brien has picked up more than 21,800 followers on Instagram with her clean eating diet and her toned body.

But the estate agent has shared an image of a distended belly alongside a flat one – and says they were taken just 12 hours apart.

“I’m not six months pregnant,” she wrote alongside the surprising images on her Facebook page. “It’s just my food baby.

“These two photos are 12 hours apart, left before bed and right when I woke up,” she explains.

She says the reason for sharing the images is to show: “We are not all what we seem on social media.

“I thought I would share a bad day with you to show you nobody is “perfect” and it is ok to have an off day where your body just decides to not play ball.

The 26-year-old, who was Miss Northern Ireland in 2012, says that the tummy was the result of “lack of sleep, stress, hormones and food intolerances.”

And she says it happened when she was out to dinner in a close-fitting dress.

“I have gone over everything I ate and I was relatively clean so it could be something I think is ‘healthy’ that my body now thinks ‘naaa no likey’,” she says.

Although she blames stress, she says she wouldn’t change her job – and offers ways to combat the bulge when it bloats up.

“I have to factor in de-stress time to help me unwind and allow my insides to untwist after a tough day in the office. Yoga, walks with the dog or just putting my feet up and watching Netflix normally do the trick.

“Sleep. I am guilty for lack of sleep. Our bodies need our eight hours to relax, rebuild and unwind in order to keep going to their full capacity each day.

“I for one do not get enough sleep by the time I finish work, go to the gym, come home and have dinner, do my food prep, then maybe sit down, by the time I know it its 11.30pm.

“Hormones. Mine are a bit up the left after competing in bikini competitions a couple of years back. I’ve never been the same since due to the amount of physical stress I put my body under for the comp.”

Read what’s causing your bloated belly to find out more.

Belly full of food

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