Top tips to beat the bloat!
By Louise Belle BHSc (Nut Med)
Often referred to as a food baby, that bulging abdomen that weighs you down is less than ideal. It can leave you feeling sluggish, affect your appetite and can cause discomfort. I think we’d all agree that if we could avoid being bloated, we would! Here are some tips to help you on your way to a bloat-free tummy:
- Be mindful: Don’t gulp down a bowl of pasta whilst watching the TV and doing sudoku with your other hand. If your brain can’t properly register that you’re eating, it cannot properly prepare your stomach acid, bile and enzymes to digest your food. You’re more likely to eat too quickly and not chew your food properly if you are distracted. Focus on the task at hand which in this case- is eating a nourishing meal!!
- Ditch the gluten: Found in bread, pasta, donuts, cake, biscuits and many other processed foods, gluten is a protein which can be difficult to digest and damages the gut lining. Many people have underlying gluten intolerance or sensitivity and don’t even know it. Do yourself a favour and reduce/ avoid gluten in your diet- you could be pleasantly surprised at how much better your digestion is. See Dr Cabot’s book Gluten – Is It Making You Sick or Overweight?
- Move it baby! When you exercise you support peristalsis, which is basically when the intestines contract and move food along the digestive system, to result in evacuation of waste. When the waste is left in your passage for too long, it can ferment and cause bloating. Walking, jogging, yoga, stretching, swimming or any type of movement really will help to get things moving along!
- Glutamine: This wonderful amino acid (building block of protein) has so many different functions! It is vital for muscle growth, supports efficient brain function, assists with detoxification and best of all – it actually heals the gut lining. If your gut lining is inflamed or damaged, large food particles can leak through causing you to bloat up. Cabbage juice is a great source of glutamine, or you can take it in powder form mixed with water.
- Kick the candida! Candida is a pathogenic (bad) yeast that resides in everyone’s intestines, but when it grows out of control it can cause damage and inflammation to the gut lining. Candida also ferments sugars from your food causing gas and bloating. Follow a low carbohydrate/low sugar diet to starve the candida and eat plenty of fermented foods. Saccharomyces Boulardii (SB) is also great for preventing the growth of candida. Ultimate Gut Health combines glutamine, SB and other healing fibres.
- Sip some herbal tea: Ginger, peppermint, liquorice, chamomile and fennel tea are very calming and great for reducing bloating and discomfort in the abdomen. Make yourself up a flask and sip it during the day to keep the bloating at bay.