Thanks to the Standard American Diet (SAD) which is made up of mostly processed foods, experiencing belly bloat is an all-too-common situation for many people. Bloat is not only uncomfortable, it's also a sign that your digestive system isn't working properly. Cleaning up your diet and eating more nutrient-rich plant-based foods can help ease digestive issues over time. Below you'll find tips for banishing bloat in the moment as well as methods you can try to prevent bloat altogether.
If you're already dealing with bloating, you can try the following strategies to relieve discomfort and help facilitate healthy digestion.
Antispasmodic drugs are used to soothe muscle spasms in the gut that are associated with bloat, but you don't have to take medicine to get these benefits. Peppermint leaves are believed to offer the same effects naturally, so sip on a cup of peppermint tea to soothe your digestive tract.
In a pinch, fennel seeds are a great natural remedy for bloat. Take about a half-teaspoon serving and chew them. You might also prepare a cup of fennel tea to get the same benefits.
Eating water-rich foods can help relieve any gastrointestinal discomfort such as bloating. Pineapple, in particular, is a great choice since it contains a special enzyme called bromelain that supports digestion.
Sipping on water may seem counterintuitive when it comes to easing bloat, but it actually helps. Good hydration helps flush out excess sodium, which could be contributing to bloat. Adding lemon amps up the diuretic properties of water to help soothe your tummy and prevent constipation.
Sometimes, you feel bloated when you've been more sedentary than usual. Stimulate your digestive system by going for a walk or doing a few yoga sequences (try wind-relieving pose). The extra movement can help get things in motion and ease bloat.
If you notice that bloating has become a regular occurrence for you, it's time to make a few changes. Try these tips to minimize the chances of experiencing belly bloat and get to the bottom of the problem.
Certain vegetables, particularly those in the cruciferous family, are incredibly high in fiber. This is a good thing, of course, but it can be more difficult for the digestive system to break down these veggies in their raw form. Eating broccoli, kale, cabbage, and cauliflower raw increases the likelihood that you'll feel bloated afterwards. Steam them instead, so it's easier for the body to digest them.
Bloating may often be caused by taking in too much air while eating. This can occur when you eat too quickly, so adopt a more mindful approach to eating. Take smaller bites, set down your fork, and chew at least 20 times before swallowing. Chewing thoroughly also helps stimulate the release of enzymes that further break down food and help with digestion.
One nutrient has amazing bloat-busting abilities: potassium. This essential mineral helps ease gastrointestinal discomfort by relaxing the muscles of the digestive tract. Get enough potassium in your diet by eating fruits and vegetable, such as bananas, tomatoes, potatoes with the skin, and leafy greens.
Eating fermented probiotic-rich foods (e.g. kimchi, kefir, sauerkraut, and kombucha) or supplementing with high-quality probiotics can help support healthy digestion. Gas and bloating symptoms can be caused by the bad bacteria that reside in your gut. Getting more of the good, gut-friendly bacteria— in the form of probiotics— can help crowd out the bad guys and kickstart better gastrointestinal functioning.
Regularly experiencing gas and bloating after eating certain foods could point to a sensitivity. The most common food sensitivities involve gluten, dairy, fructose, and eggs. See your doctor to rule out a food allergy or intolerance if you suspect these foods are related to your belly bloat. Using a food diary can help you keep track of your symptoms.
Don't just suffer through it the next time you experience belly bloat. Take advantage of these natural strategies to relieve bloat. Also, look more closely at your eating habits to figure out the causes of bloating, so you can limit your discomfort in the future.
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