How to Stop Stomach Growling While Fasting 
Carmen Van Rensburg - Accredited Exercise Physiologist
Carmen Van Rensburg is an Accredited Exercise Physiologist with a wealth of experience, spanning over 12 years in the field. She has demonstrated expertise in devising exercise-based rehabilitation services that promote wellness and recovery. Her instructive techniques in conducting safe and effective exercise sessions have significantly aided individuals in various areas. These include weight loss, improving muscle strength, optimizing cardiovascular function, enhancing body composition, increasing flexibility, and facilitating recovery from chronic diseases, disabilities, and injuries.
10.01.2024

How to Stop Stomach Growling & Improve Digestion While Fasting 

Intermittent fasting
Table Of Contents

Introduction: How Does Intermittent Fasting Can Affect the Digestive System?

Are you interested in powering up your digestive system? Many people are now considering the health benefits of intermittent fasting – a popular dieting approach with its roots dating back thousands of years. 

Is your stomach constantly grumbling? Read the article! We’ll look at the science behind intermittent fasting to see how it can improve digestion and overall health. We’ll talk about the different types of fasts and give you some pointers on how to get started.  

Whether you’re already a fan of eating patterns like 5:2 or 16:8 or just want to know more about creating the most elegant use of mealtimes without sacrificing nutrition, this guide has something for everyone!

Also, read – What Breaks a Fast

Understand the Causes of Stomach Growling During Fasting and How to Stop It

We’ve all experienced that embarrassing moment when our stomach decides to put on a rumbling concert, especially when it’s feeling empty. But fret not, friends!

When your stomach is empty for an extended period, it produces some extra noise. This is because the absence of food triggers the digestive system to release digestive juices and undergo contractions, leading to those audible growling sounds.

When you’re fasting, your stomach remains empty for extended periods, leading to decreased production of digestive juices and increased stomach contractions. These contractions, known as peristalsis, help mix and move the remaining digestive contents in your stomach, causing that audible growling noise.

How to Stop Stomach Growling & Improve Digestion While Fasting 

Are You Burning Fat If Your Stomach Growls?

Despite popular belief, stomach growling doesn’t mean you’re burning fat. Instead, research has shown that those rumbles are simply a result of your digestive system doing its job and pushing food through. 

That said, there are healthy and effective ways to reduce fat in the body, such as eating better, exercising regularly, and increasing water intake. 

Common Reasons Why Your Stomach Growls While Fasting?

Let’s delve into the fascinating world of stomach growls, or as it’s medically known, “borborygmi.” You may have experienced these rumbling sounds coming from your insides, and it’s perfectly normal. They occur as food, liquids, and gas move through your stomach and small intestine, creating those intriguing noises.

Typically, excessive gas moving back and forth in the intestines is the leading cause of these stomach grumbles. While the exact reasons behind these noises are not fully understood, they can occur due to various factors such as hunger, incomplete digestion, or indigestion.

Stomach growling is often noticeable when you haven’t eaten for a while, like during intermittent fasting. It can also indicate low blood sugar levels or difficulties in nutrient absorption by your intestines.

Also, read – The Science Behind Does Fasting Affect Blood Pressure

The good news is that the noises usually subside once you introduce food into your system. This is because as the food takes up space in your stomach, your digestive muscles shift their focus to breaking down and absorbing the nutrients, reducing the movement of air that causes those growling sounds.

Once you become more familiar with intermittent fasting, you’ll recognize the difference between true hunger and the occasional “hunger pangs” that manifest as stomach growls.

Although these stomach noises are harmless, we understand they can sometimes be inconvenient and embarrassing. But fret not! There are various ways to manage and minimize stomach growls!

What Does It Mean When Your Stomach Growls But You’re Not Hungry?

Non-hungry stomach growling can be a result of anxiety or stress. The National Institutes of Health publicized that one in four adults experience frequent abdominal rumbling, and many are attributed to emotional distress. Suppose you find yourself experiencing intestinal noises coupled with other signs such as bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhea, or constipation. 

In that case, it’s more likely that these rumbling sounds are due to a medical condition like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), food allergies, intestinal blockage, or an intestinal infection

You must take your symptoms seriously and visit your doctor for further diagnosis and treatment. With their help and proper self-care methods, such as stress reduction techniques and dietary modifications, you might get your digestive system back on track and reduce any uncomfortable stomach rumbling.

Stress and anxiety can often lead to physiological changes that cause digestion issues like abdominal rumbling, so it is vital to prioritize relaxation and self-care for the mind and body. 

  • By managing stress through meditation, yoga, deep breathing exercises, or journaling, you can help create balance and ease any uncomfortable stomach growling symptoms. 
  • It might also be helpful to watch how certain foods affect your digestive system; if you find yourself experiencing painful sensations after eating a specific food or food group, it might be best to eliminate that item from your diet.

Also, read – How Many Calories to Eat During Intermittent Fasting

Nutritional Strategies to Reduce Stomach Growling While Fasting 

Caffeine Can Help Curb Hunger and Provide an Instant Pick-Me-up

Caffeine can be a helpful tool in curbing hunger and keeping cravings at bay. When you’re hungry, a cup of caffeinated beverage like coffee or tea can provide a temporary sense of fullness, making it easier to resist the urge to snack. 

It’s also renowned for its ability to increase energy levels and provide a much-needed productivity boost. So whether you’re starting your day or hitting an afternoon slump, a cup of coffee gives you the extra kick you need to stay focused and alert.

Staying Hydrated Throughout the Day & Spice up Your Water

One of the simplest and most effective ways to hydrate your body is by sipping water consistently throughout the day. Keep a water bottle handy, and make it a habit to take regular sips!

Starting your day with a couple of glasses of hot water infused with lemon and ginger concoction aids digestion. It can alleviate symptoms of constipation that may arise during fasting. 

Avoid Tempting Yourself With Food During the Fasting Period

Keeping yourself occupied and finding enjoyable activities can help steer your focus away from food and minimize temptation.

It’s important to distance yourself from food during the fasting period. The more you expose yourself to tempting food, the harder it becomes to resist. Avoid situations surrounded by food, such as being in the kitchen while others eat. You reduce the chances of resisting temptation by consciously staying away from food.

Find activities that captivate your attention and keep you engaged during fasting. For example, engaging in hobbies, pursuing creative projects, or diving into a good book can divert your focus from thoughts of food. 

Self-control is a skill that improves with practice!

Also, read – Does Intermittent Fasting Slow Metabolism?

Foods that reduce stomach noises include: 

Bananas

It’s gentle on the stomach. Bananas are easily digestible and help soothe an irritated digestive system, reducing stomach noises.

Ginger

Known for its soothing properties, ginger is a fantastic choice for calming stomach noises. It can help alleviate digestive discomfort and promote a quieter stomach.

Yogurt

Packed with probiotics, yogurt is a gut-friendly food that helps balance the bacteria in the digestive system. 

Oatmeal

Rich in fiber, it helps regulate bowel movements and keeps your stomach satisfied for longer, reducing the likelihood of stomach noises.

Peppermint

Whether you sip on peppermint tea or chew on a peppermint leaf, this refreshing herb has been known to ease digestive issues and reduce stomach noises. In addition, it helps relax the gastrointestinal tract muscles, promoting a calm and quiet stomach.

Fennel

It has natural antispasmodic properties that can help ease digestive discomfort and minimize stomach rumbling.

Papaya

Known for its digestive enzymes, it can aid in the digestion of proteins and reduce stomach noises.

Also, read – Intermittent Fasting for Muscle Gain

What Foods Should You Avoid with Intermittent Fasting To Prevent Gas?

Carbonated Drinks

After breaking your fast, say no to carbonated beverages like soda and sparkling water. These drinks can introduce excess gas into your digestive system, leading to bloating and discomfort. Opt for still water or herbal teas instead.

Legumes

While legumes like beans, lentils, and chickpeas are highly nutritious, they can also cause gas and bloating due to their complex carbohydrates. Consider limiting or avoiding them immediately after breaking your fast, and introduce them gradually into your meals to give your digestive system time to adjust.

Cruciferous Vegetables

Vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts are nutrient powerhouses but can be notorious for causing gas. To minimize discomfort, consume these veggies in smaller portions and ensure they are well-cooked.

High-Fiber Foods

While fiber is essential for a healthy digestive system, consuming high-fiber foods like whole grains, bran, and certain fruits and vegetables immediately after fasting can lead to gas. 

Fatty Foods

Greasy or fried foods can slow digestion, leading to bloating and gas. Therefore, avoiding heavy, fatty meals immediately after fasting is best. 

Artificial Sweeteners

Sorbitol, xylitol, mannitol, etc. commonly found in sugar-free products, can cause digestive issues, including gas and bloating. Read food labels carefully and select natural sweeteners like honey or maple syrup in moderation.

Also, read – Working Out While Fasting: How to Maximize Results

Simple Ways to Stop Stomach Rumbling

  • Avoid unhealthy snacking: Chips, cookies, candy bars, and other processed junk food offer little nutritional value but still leave you feeling hungry soon after eating them. 
  • Don’t skip meals: Skipping meals makes your stomach rumble louder in the long run because your body isn’t getting the nourishment it needs. So try to eat at least three small meals daily, plus healthy snacks if needed throughout the day. 
  • Take time for yourself: Stress is a principal cause of hunger, so taking time out for yourself can help you relax and reduce your cravings. Try yoga or meditation to get started.
  • Get enough sleep: Not getting adequate sleep can increase levels of ghrelin, a hormone that triggers hunger, so make sure you’re getting at least 7-8 hours every night.

Mindful Steps to Help Reduce Stomach Growling While Eating 

Although it can be a bit embarrassing, the good news is that there are mindful steps you can take to help reduce those rumbling noises while eating: 

One of the main reasons your stomach growls while eating is because it’s empty or hasn’t received food for an extended period. To prevent this, establish a regular eating schedule and avoid skipping meals.

Eating mindfully involves savoring each bite and chewing your food thoroughly. Taking the time to chew appropriately not only aids digestion but also reduces the chances of stomach growling. When you eat quickly or swallow large chunks of food, your stomach has to work harder to break it down, potentially leading to louder rumbling sounds.

Opting for softer, easier-to-digest foods can be a simple yet effective strategy to minimize stomach growling. Cooked vegetables, steamed rice, lean proteins, and soups are good options. 

How to Stop Stomach Growling & Improve Digestion While Fasting 

Herbal Remedies and Supplements to Prevent Stomach Noises

Probiotic Supplements

Probiotics are beneficial bacteria supporting a healthy gut environment and improve digestion. In addition, they can help regulate the balance of bacteria in the digestive system, potentially reducing stomach noises. Look for high-quality probiotic supplements that contain a variety of strains.

Digestive Enzymes

Digestive enzyme supplements can assist in breaking down food more efficiently, supporting digestion and reducing the occurrence of stomach noises. These supplements contain enzymes like amylase, protease, and lipase, which aid in the breakdown of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. 

In addition, the above-mentioned natural supplements improve the function of the digestive system!

Also, read – What Is the Best Intermittent Fasting Window To Lose Belly Fat?

Which Vitamins Can Help Your Stomach Stop Making Noises?

Taking a multivitamin ensures that you are getting all of the nutrients that your body requires. Additionally, specific vitamins and minerals are especially helpful in reducing or eliminating stomach noise:

  • Vitamin B6 has been shown to help reduce digestive issues like gas and bloating, which can cause an uncomfortable, noisy stomach.
  • Vitamin C helps support a healthy immune system and might reduce symptoms of indigestion – another culprit behind noisy tummies.
  • Vitamin E protects against digestive inflammation, which can also contribute to stomach noises.

You should find relief from a noisy tummy sooner rather than later!

Conclusion

All of the strategies and tips presented in this article on how to keep your stomach from growling while fasting can assist you in improving your digestive health. Finally, these measures can alleviate any discomfort and help you reach your fitness goals. 

With hard work and simple adjustments, you can begin to feel better and see real progress on your intermittent fasting journey!

Carmen Van Rensburg is an Accredited Exercise Physiologist with a wealth of experience, spanning over 12 years in the field. She has demonstrated expertise in devising exercise-based rehabilitation services that promote wellness and recovery. Her instructive techniques in conducting safe and effective exercise sessions have significantly aided individuals in various areas. These include weight loss, improving muscle strength, optimizing cardiovascular function, enhancing body composition, increasing flexibility, and facilitating recovery from chronic diseases, disabilities, and injuries.

Intermittent fasting 101Intermittent fasting mistakes