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HELP! Abdomen blowing up like a balloon

Discussion in 'Gastrointestinal and Urinary' started by Athene, Jun 19, 2010.

  1. Athene

    Athene Never give up

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    I thought I had got this under control when I gave up fructose, but it is happening again.

    I drink chilled water, or sometimes I eat someting sugary (I mean a single sugar lump when desperate for energy, for example) and within about ten minutes my tummy has bloated up until I look about seven months pregnant. I am not exaggerating.

    It is horribly painful. There is a lot of gas which I can feel and hear gurgling and which takes about 24 hours to eventually work its way through, but there is also intense pain independent of the gas.

    I've tried taking antihistamines because I know I have a lot of allergies and because coldness can trigger a histamine release, but there was little effect.
    I have tried taking a large dose of charcoal and this definitely limited the gas and bloating to less than usual, but did nothing for the awful pain.

    Has anyone else had this and does anyone have any idea what is going on? Wild guesses will also be received with interest! I am so desperate about this I'll try anything.
  2. CBS

    CBS Senior Member

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    Gas-X? (often available in a much cheaper in generic form - Simethicone - somethings behind pharmacy counter). It won't address the underlying issue but it will break the surface tension on the gas bubbles and keep them from forming (a possible source of the pain).

    Sorry to hear you're so uncomfortable.
  3. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Athene,

    sorry to hear you're in pain ...

    Have you been tested for or treated for candida ? I would imagine other bacteria or fungus that feed off of sugar could do this too though.

    I find that 3 Gas x pills works better than 2. And the chewable tablets are useless for me.

    Also, ginger broth made from boiling ginger in water works for me but it has to be strong enough. If it burns a little going down then I know it's strong enough. If I remember correctly .. you take 1" of fresh sliced ginger and add it to 1 quart of water and boiled it for 30 minutes. You only need to drink about 2 oz of this ...

    Opening a charcoal capsule, adding it to about 8 oz of water and sipping it seems to work best. Then there's ACV + baking soda and water ...

    FWIW ... I ran into a problem with my digestion last month and nothing I did seemed to help. It all stopped within 24 hours after starting my period though ...

    If it gets too bad, I wouldn't hesitate to go to the ER or a walk in clinic ... Xchoc
  4. Martlet

    Martlet Senior Member

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    Thanks for that, CBS. I have a similar problem but for some reason only if I drink Frappucino, which I love and which, whenever I forget how badly I felt last time, I try again, only to bloat up like a balloon. I can take sugar, so it's not that. And I can eat dairy and drink milk, so it's not that either. To be honest, I wondered if it was what happens to people coming up on sixty, but whatever it is, it's horrid and I sympathise with Athene because if it happens just with sugar, it closes down a lot of food options for her and I well remember how nibbling something sweet would give a temporary boost, when I was really ill.
  5. zoe.a.m.

    zoe.a.m. Senior Member

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    Hi Athene,
    I have this problem too. I've had it for about a year and a half now, with some times better and some worse, but it hasn't gone away. I can't say I've done much about it other than to be concerned and very uncomfortable. I did start drinking chicken broth (put a carcass in the slow cooker for a day with a chunk of ginger) and that seems to give some relief. I think xchocoholic is right that this misery is probably related to fungus or candida. I'm waiting on some test results right now, and if anything turns up positive I'll let you know, since the doc I am seeing seems to think these are related.

    I agree with the other suggestions too about Gas-X. I can't think of anything better than that for immediate OTC relief. I don't know what they do prescription-wise for this either. I do think real ginger tea might also help. I'm trying probiotics for this, but had to abstain for a few weeks until yesterday b/c of the testing I mentioned, and I hope they will help with this problem as I've seen many many (around 900) testimonials of this product helping these problems. At the beginning though, they make the problem worse, so I wouldn't recommend that when you're in the thick of it. I'm not sure about charcoal.

    For what it's worth, the doc I mentioned told me that when someone has candida or other bugs in the gut, they eat up the sugars in everything you eat quickly and constantly, putting you in a constant hypoglycemic state and needing sugar.

    Hope it improves!
  6. leaves

    leaves Senior Member

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    heh I have this too. It went away once when I was very low carbs. Strangely I test negatively for fungus/ candida.
  7. Karin

    Karin

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    I have this too. In my case, I finally figured out a year ago that it happens when I eat a food I am sensitive to. I had to do an IgG food panel (blood test at Alletess) to figure it out. It went away 95% since I removed the sensitive foods.

    In my case, here is what happens if I eat something I am sensitive to: about 4-6 hours later, I feel all of a sudden intensely tired, and my mood drops, for no reason. About an hour later, my tummy swells as you describe. And since I am a size 2, it DOES look like I am pregnant. It also hurt in my stomach. The next day, I get acid loose stool. So in my case it does look like an 'allergic' reaction.

    One things helps me when I have one of these attacks, nothing else: raw garlic. I crush one fresh clove, let it stand in the air for 1 to 2 minutes to activate compounds, then add one teaspoon of olive oil, then I swallow the whole thing followed by water. It is tough and yucky, but it works within 10 to 30 minutes, INCULDING on the mood and fatigue.
  8. glenp

    glenp "and this too shall pass"

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    Pleez any of you with the bloating, make sure that your physician gives you the "CA125" with your blood tests to help rule out ovarian cancer. Many of us thinking these symptoms are part of our illness do not get other diseases ruled out. The "CA125" is a simple test timilar to the one for prostate cancer but many physicians do not routinely put it on the requisitions.

    Also if you are taking garlic, try and see if it is affecting your dysautonomia, it can make some worse.

    glen
  9. Sing

    Sing Senior Member

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    I have this extreme bloating too. My digestion has been in trouble for four years after a really bad bout of intestinal flu. I know some of the triggers for this bloating. In my case it is dairy and legumes, inc. peanuts and soy products. Coarse whole grain breads are harder to digest. And a large serving of any vegetable in the cabbage family will also produce gas. Mostly it is dairy and legumes. If I avoid all this stuff and eat lightly too, the extension will go down over 1-3 days.

    Gas-X never worked. Enzymes or probiotics--my intestines just laugh.

    I don't like being unattractive like this, but neither do I like starving.

    Sing
  10. Martlet

    Martlet Senior Member

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    Probiotics give me constipation. My digestion has been a little screwy since I had my GB removed.
  11. Sing

    Sing Senior Member

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    Oh, I forgot--Something else which helps me is deep pressure on those spots that are painful and tight. I don't rub, just hold, then move to the next one. I gradually work around my abdomen. This really helps to get the energy flow moving more freely. I can certainly breathe better afterwards and am less sore. So tight muscles and fascia play a role too in blocking energy there.

    As for what glenp pointed out. If you've never had a swollen abdomen then all of a sudden you get one and it doesn't go away, isn't responsive to changes in diet, then starts getting more painful--definitely get checked for ovarian cancer.

    Sing
  12. Athene

    Athene Never give up

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    Thanks for all your suggestions, folks.

    The common factors so far seem to be candida and alleriges. I definitely have a lot of allergies and I managed to stop this happening for quite a while once I eliminated a lot of foods I am allergic to. I suppose conclusion #1 is that histamine is definitely one thing which can do this. (Martlett, I used to get this very badly from coffee and found out I am allergic to it, so that may be your culprit). So I guess maybe the cold water is triggering degranulation.

    And I guess conclusion #2 must be that my intestinal candida had got a lot worse again and needs to be attacked in a big way. The comment about candida eating up all your sugars and leaving you permanently hypoglycemic sounds exactly what I have going on. And I also think it is logical my candida would be worse as I have had such a lot of antibiotics lately.

    I'll try the ginger. Unfortunately I can't have garlic as it contains fructose, but I do remember that being good against both yeast and bacteria.
  13. wciarci

    wciarci Wenderella

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    Hi Athene, so sorry to hear about this. I swear by probiotics, no sugar, ever, under any conditions and no gluten. If I cheat, I pay. Hope this helps.

    Wendy
  14. Mark

    Mark Acting CEO

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    Sorry, I'm dashing through things and haven't had time to read the whole thread, but wanted to make a couple of quick points in reply to Athene's post.

    First is that I had massive bloating myself on my abdomen and no amount of exercise will bring it down; knowing what I know now it's clearly some kind of inflammatory problem with the digestion, in reaction to things one's sensitive to. Now that my stomach's basically pretty flat again, I can observe it balloon out when I eat the wrong things. The only solution I've found to any of it is to experiment until you figure out what you can and can't tolerate, and I ended up with a very simple and restricted core diet. Finding the best independent organic/health food shop in the area is a crucial first step I would say.

    Second, re: sugar. I was advised at a very early stage by an alt. practitioner that refined sugar and wheat are basically very bad for us and we shouldn't be eating them (in Europe anyway) because we aren't evolved for them. So refined sugar was one of the first things I cut out. Indeed it does rule out a whole lot of processed foods, and it's tough.

    I'm not sure what your experience was with fructose, or what exactly you have cut out and whether that was really necessary to do so, but my best advice for replacing sugar, and getting the energy hit you mentioned, is fresh fruit, and in particularly smoothies. Innocent smoothies were an absolute lifeline for me, there is an extraordinary amount of energy in those, and you can almost live on them when on detox or avoiding most other foods. The other source I go to is dark chocolate, where deprogramming oneself from the myth that chocolate is fattening can be helpful - of course it's the milk in most of the chocolate products we get that's fattening, not chocolate itself that is "bad for us". Attitudes around this sort of thing really depress me sometimes. Anyway I can't tolerate soya either as I discovered late on, so there's not much chocolate I can have safely, but there are allergen-free dark chocolates around as well.

    Finally the only experiences I've heard described on here regarding anti-histamines are either the same as my own - they have no effect - or for some people they can be really harmful. Our reaction, whatever it is, is not the same kind of immune response as that, and indeed that's one of the fundamental things we need to get understood and recognised because it's a major reason why what happens to us is "impossible" - we don't get the IgE immune response the doctors expect to see. So anyway: anti-histamines are very probably a waste of time for us.
  15. Athene

    Athene Never give up

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    Hi Wendy and folks,
    I think I definitely need to get back on the no sugar at all diet. Sigh. It takes such a lot of self discipline.

    Mark, I definitely have to avoid fructose as I was tested and do not absorb it from my intestine. So it is the worst sugar for me it just sits in there and feeds the bacteria and other unwanted guests (yeast and I think parasites too). Giving up fruit is torture for me but before I did, my tummy was bloated up literally all the time.

    Regarding the antihistamine, I think it helps a bit as I have hyperosinophilia so having any receptor sites blocked anywhere is a bonus. But as you say, it is only very slightly effective. I take diamoni oxidase which is a histamine scavenger and that helps... again, slightly but better than nothing. Do you know of any more info on antihistamines in PWC and the effects they have... or rather, don't have?

    BTW Glen, if you have the ovary problem, is the bloating all the time, or can it come and go? And is it very painful? and Does it vary through the month?

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