The Real Reason Beer Makes You Bloat

If you’ve noticed a little bit of bloating after drinking beer or another alcoholic beverage, you won’t be alone. Bloating in the face and stomach after consuming alcohol is actually pretty common — while you might not expect a drink to have that sort of effect, the truth is that alcohol can very much cause bloating around your body.

This is partly because alcohol tends to be quite calorific, and we often associate alcohol with other behaviors like eating fast food — or eating quickly — or smoking, which can also cause bloating (via WebMD), but it’s not the only reason. Meanwhile, to get rid of bloating in a pinch, you can try drinking some water — to prevent bloating in the first place, your best bet is to drink water before, during, and after drinking alcohol (via Healthline).

Here’s the real reason beer makes you bloat — and why drinking water can help.

Bloating has a few different causes

According to Healthline, there are a couple of causes of bloating when you drink beer. Per Cosmopolitan, dehydration can cause bloating. When your body is dehydrated, it reacts by attempting to hold onto as much water as it can — as a result, you can expect a little bloating and puffiness. This is why drinking water tends to help with bloating, particularly when it’s caused by the consumption of alcohol.

Meanwhile, another reason why beer makes you bloat is because of the calories in alcohol. Of course, the calorie count will vary from drink to drink, but through a session of drinking, you could easily consume several hundred calories — or more. These calorific drinks can lead to weight gain and subsequent bloating. As you can see, there’s no singular reason as to why beer causes bloating — rather, it’s a combination of a few factors. On top of dehydration and the number of calories in beer, alcohol is inflammatory, and this can cause bloating too.

To minimize bloating, you should drink plenty of water, avoid smoking and chewing gum, and stay away from fatty or gas-causing foods. You won’t be able to prevent bloating entirely, but you can make it less visible. 

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