Bloating typically feels like a swelling, tightening or full sensation in the abdominal area. The term "bloating" is used to describe an increase in size or general swelling of the abdominal area. The swelling is caused by gases that are produced by the body while it is turning food into energy.
Bloating in the body is often a sign that the body is not digesting a certain food properly. This is caused by the body getting an inadequate amount of water or too many fatty foods. Water plays a big role in healthy digestion and other bodily functions. According to WebMD, foods that are high in fat contribute to bloating because they lead to the placement of fat cells throughout the body. Fat cells slow down the body's natural ability to empty out the stomach, which leads to a tightening sensation in the abdomen. This is why it is recommend that sufferers of bloating attempt to change their diets to see if that solves the problem.
WebMD also links bloating to specific medical conditions. Although occasional bloating in the body is normal, chronic bloating is sometimes caused by an obstruction in the bowels. Bloating is also a symptom of other problems, such as Crohn's Disease, irritable bowl syndrome and lactose intolerance. Symptoms of bloating that persist or continue to come back after a change in diet need to be discussed with a doctor to rule out the possibility of other problems.