Experiencing bloating during ovulation is quite common and unpleasant. If you are also struggling with your tummy sticking out, don’t be bothered, you are not alone to suffer from bloating. Around 11 to 14 days of the menstrual cycle, ovulation occurs. At this time oestrogen and LH (luteinizing hormone) surge high, which results in bloating. This feeling of heaviness in the abdomen is quite frustrating. So, here you will get some handy tips and a useful guide to understanding the connection between ovulation and bloating and how it can be managed as well as settled.
1. What is Ovulation?
Ovulation belongs to one of the stages of the female menstrual cycle. The menstrual cycle consists of four phases; menstrual phase (lasts for 3 to 7 days), follicular phase (lasts for 11 to 27 days), ovulation phase (lasts for 24 hours), and luteal phase (lasts for 11 to 17 days).
Out of four phases, it is the third stage of the menstrual cycle and it remains for 24 hours. It happens around 14-16 days before the next menstrual cycle of 28-30 days. So, it emerges around halfway through the menstrual cycle.
The released mature egg (also known as female gamete) from the ovary travels along the fallopian tube towards the uterus. Here, the mature egg waits for the sperm to be fertilized. In this process, the uterine lining thickens itself for the preparation of fertilization. If no conception happens, the egg ruptures, and these uterine walls shed in the form of blood. This every-month cycle is known as menstruation.
If the sperm fertilizes the egg, they divide together to form an embryo. The hypothalamus, a part of the brain regulates ovulation and the secretion of hormones such as FSH (follicle-stimulating hormones), LH (luteinizing hormone), and estrogen levels in the menstrual cycle. You can check your ovulation by calculations at home or an ovulation predictor kit is also helpful in computing.
2. Signs and Symptoms of Ovulation
Symptoms which are quite common during ovulation are:
2.1. Vaginal Discharge and Body Temperature
As ovulation nears, there is an increase in vaginal discharge. Discharge is wet, slippery, and carries elasticity. Also, it looks like raw egg white. Generally, it is noticed near the ovulation period or during ovulation. It indicates that you are at your fertile window. Dry cervical mucus signs you are not at your ovulation period.
There is a slight increase and fluctuations in your basal body temperature (BBT) during the ovulation period as it reaches approximately 97 to 99 F. It rises a little as before ovulation is quite normal, like up to 96 to 98 F.
2.2. Bloating and Cramps
Bloating may be witnessed during ovulation due to an increase in abdominal pressure. Fluid retention and retention of gas is also responsible for the bloating. During ovulation, there are some changes in hormones in our body. It gives you a feeling of fullness.
Cramps in the pelvic area are common during the onset of ovulation. Mittelschmerz is a term used for pelvic pain in the middle of the menstrual cycle. Applying heat can give you some relief. Over-the-counter pain relievers are also beneficial.
2.3. Changes in Libido and Swollen Vulva
There is an increase in sexual desire as a surge in estrogen levels causes intense changes in LH levels which boost women’s desire. Also, it keeps vaginal tissue lubricated which leads to pleasurable sex during ovulation.
The sensitivity of the vulva or vagina increases and it might appear swollen. This leads to an increase in the sex drive of women.
2.4. Back Pain, Nausea and Breast Tenderness
In many instances, women also have low back pain and tenderness in their breasts during this period. Swollen breasts are quite common during this fertilization period.
Nausea and headaches can be felt. An increase in sensitivity to smell is also typical.
2.5. Spotting During Ovulation
It is relatively uncommon but sometimes may occur because of various reasons such as low estrogen levels, late ovulation, irregular consumption of birth control pills, and so on. Usually, the color of the blood is pinkish and paler than typical blood red.
Glowing skin also sings ovulation. Mood swings are foreseen as it is triggered by hormonal imbalances. Irritability is expected during this ovulation period. Some Yogas and deep breathing might relax you.
3. Does Ovulation Cause Bloating?
Yes! Many women experienced bloating along with other symptoms during ovulation. Due to occurrences of hormonal differences like a boost in LH (luteinizing hormone) and estrogen levels, it is quite typical to go through bloating during ovulation, and in a way, both are linked somewhere.
Bloating is an uneasy feeling around the midsection of the person. It makes your tummy feel tight, stiff, and full. Sometimes it might result in pain. Excess intestinal gas and increased pressure in the abdomen lead to bloating. It is quite different from water retention which because of fluid retention causes swelling in the abdomen. The Luteinizing hormone (LH) and estrogen levels wave just before ovulation begins. This hormonal change usually triggers swelling and puff leading to bloating.
3.2. Causes of Bloating
Causes include distinct reasons such as:
- Overeating food or poor eating practices.
- Swallowing of air
- Using straws
- Acid reflux or GERD (Gastroesophageal reflux disease)
- UTI (Urinary tract infection). Click here
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Overgrowth of bacteria in small bowel
- Obesity or weight gain
- Lactose intolerance (consumption of dairy products like milk, cheese, ghee, and so on) and complications in food digestion
- Consumption of processed, oily, and packaged food also leads to bloating. High-carb food is also responsible.
3.3. Symptoms of Bloating
- Cramps in the abdomen. The area of pain might keep altering if it is gas-related.
- Swelling of the abdomen.
- Frequent increase in burping when the person is bloated.
- Increasing flatulence more than often during bloating.
- The feeling of puffiness and pressure around your stomach.
- Fullness in the abdominal area can be felt.
- Breath shortness.
- Discomfort in the lower back.
- Feeling Constipated all the time.
- The feeling of discomfort is common.
- The reverberating sound comes from the tummy.
- Farting more than normal can be noticed.
- Chest pain and headaches
- Sometimes fever is also witnessed.
4. Strategies to Manage Bloating
Bloating is treatable and the treatment of bloating includes both home and clinical remedies. You can take over-the-counter medicine (gas relief capsules) from the local pharmacy center. If the symptoms are severe, you should see a doctor. Here, you will get some tips for its management:
- Avoid drinking beverages loaded with sugar and sugary foods.
- Onions and garlic should be avoided during particular times.
- Stop consuming products with lactose like cottage cheese, milk, and so on.
- Avoid fried and oily foods. Frozen, processed, and packaged food also should be avoided.
- Stop using straws while drinking fluids.
- Consumption of legumes such as grams, kidney beans, and chickpeas should be avoided.
- Fruits like watermelon and grapes help to get relief from bloating.
- Chewing peppermints and drinking chamomile and carom seed tea is quite helpful in bloating.
- 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar can be sipped.
- Drink enough water and avoid drinking carbonated and caffeine-rich drinks.
- Consume probiotics such as yogurt and curd. Also, increase the intake of dietary fiber and food which includes potassium and magnesium.
- Do yoga and exercise daily. Have a proper sleep.
5. Home Remedies to Reduce Bloating
5.1. Carom Seeds
Take 2 cups of water. Add 2 tablespoons of carom seeds (Ajwan) to it and boil it to reduce it to half. Add a pinch of pink salt for the taste and have it. It might give you some comfort.
5.2. Cumin Seeds Concoction
Take 2 tablespoons of cumin seeds and roast it on low heat till the color changes to dark brownish. Then, add a full cup of water along with some grated jaggery and boil the mixture in half. Strain it and have this concoction to get some relief.
5.3. Asafoetida Powder
Take asafoetida powder (Hing), dry ginger powder, and some black salt. Grind them in a blender. Add the blended powder to a glass of lukewarm water. Mix them well and drink it. This might give you some relaxation.
5.4. Green Tea
Green tea contains antioxidant properties and is full of many health-related benefits. Having this tea while bloating is very beneficial as it helps to reduce your bloating.
5.5. Star Anise
Star anise (chakra phool) helps to provide ease and comfort from bloating caused by indigestion. It is a carminative. So, you can have it by doing some simple process. Just take some star anise powder and add honey to it. Mix it well and get relief from bloating, abdominal pain, and stomach pain.
6. Final Words: Does Ovulation Cause Bloating?
Ovulation is a phase of the menstrual cycle when the ovary ovulates and the body of a woman changes. These hormonal changes along with other reasons like dehydration, PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome), and so on lead to bloating. Bloating causes cramps, discomfort, and puffiness in the stomach.
However, it can be fixed by taking some preventive measures like having a walk, avoiding some kinds of drinks, having probiotics, managing stress, and following some home remedies. If bloating because of ovulation remains and things get worse, don’t think twice before visiting a doctor and following the prescribed medication.