22 Feb 6 Simple tactics to beat bloating2 minute read
Bloating is one of the most common concerns mentioned in clinic. While it is certainly possible to identify cause-and-effect between a specific food and bloating, there are lots of other factors that contribute to the condition, including stress, overeating, an excess of bad bacteria, low stomach acid and even clothes that are too tight!
Those with chronic bloating and digestive issues would benefit from seeing a registered nutritional therapist. In the meantime, there are simple steps that everyone can take to reduce the likelihood of that dreaded puffed-up feeling:
1. Take 5 deep breaths before eating
Have you ever noticed you lose your appetite when you’re stressed? A pioneering study conducted more than 60 years ago found that intestinal contractions increase when a person is feeling hostile, and decrease when a person is feeling helpless . Cultivate a relaxed, happy state of mind and your digestion is more likely to be easy and even.
2. Go for green
Not only are green vegetables chock-full of nutrients, such as vitamin A, vitamin C and magnesium, they also contain lots of fibre and water—both of which are essential for problem-free digestion.
3. Consider a probiotic
Probiotic supplements can help repopulate your gut with “good” bacteria, which aid proper digestion. In one randomised trial, supplementation of a probiotic was found to significantly reduce flatulence after just four weeks . Look for a supplement with at least 10–20 million colony-forming units (the number is usually listed on the label).
4. Swap fizzy for flat
Fizzy drinks create a lot of pressure in cans and bottles, and your insides are no different: the carbonic acid fills your stomach with air, leaving you with the desire to belch. If you’re turning to fizzy drinks for the flavour, try popping freshly cut fruit or mint leaves in your water instead.
5. Sip ginger tea after a meal
Ginger has a long tradition of soothing sore stomachs. In one placebo-controlled trial, participants who received supplements with ginger and artichoke extract enjoyed a significant reduction in epigastric pain and bloating . You don’t need to pop pills, though—a slice of ginger in warm water is enough to have an effect.
6. Get moving!
It’s best to avoid strenuous exercise after a big meal, but a gentle activity can encourage gastrointestinal motility, thus helping your food to move along. Aim for at least a 20-minute stroll—and go with someone you can chat to on the way round!
For individualised and targeted support, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.