A bloated belly is something we all dread. It seems to come out of nowhere at the worst possible times, sabotaging your plans and mood. Planning on wearing that new shirt or dress? Not today, belly bloat decides what you’re going to wear. Spending your time worried about your belly can really sap your self-confidence.
And it’s not just the discomfort. Bloating is your body’s way of telling you something isn’t right with your gut. If you feel bloated on a regular basis, it’s a big red flag that your digestive system is in serious distress.
Fortunately, there are steps you can take to banish belly bloat quickly. And these solutions also help restore gut health long-term at the same time.
Probiotics (good bacteria) are one of the most important fixes to help prevent belly bloat.
Without healthy bacteria, your gut cannot properly function. Several strains of probiotics have been shown to reduce inflammation, ease digestive discomfort and even support weight loss.
Because of overuse of antibiotics, anti-bacterial products and pesticides in food, the healthy bacteria in your gut is under constant attack.
Probiotics repopulate your gut with healthy bacteria, reducing digestive distress and helping to prevent bloating.
Thanks to ultra-processing of ingredients and most meals being heated, the vast majority of food eaten today is lacking in digestive enzymes.
Without a full range of digestive enzymes your gut cannot properly break down food. Undigested food particles create a sluggish digestive tract which is a perfect recipe for cramps and a bloated belly. Little wonder that bloating kicks in after a heavy meal.
Try eating more raw fruits and veggies with your meals. These foods come with enzymes inside that enable digestion.
Carbs, fats, proteins and dairy all require different digestive enzymes so to experience full relief, you may need to consider supplementing with a full range of plant-based enzymes.
Instead of a standalone supplement, consider an organic green juice that comes with enzymes and probiotics, so you get multiple ways to relieve digestive discomfort.
Ginger is renowned for how it soothes the stomach. In fact, alternative medicine professionals will often use ginger to help with stomach upset, nausea, and bloating (1).
Ginger also provides an antioxidant (gingerol) that is considered an anti-inflammatory, further supporting gut health (2).
So, the next time your tummy is giving you trouble, give ginger tea a try. Steep sliced ginger for up to 30 minutes to release all its benefits.
Produce that’s not organic is typically riddled with pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, and several other crop chemicals.
These chemicals decimate the healthy bacteria in your gut. This, in turn, can result in an unhealthy digestive system and chronic bloating.
Organic foods are grown without these toxins making them a healthier choice. Organic fruits and veggies are also up to 50% higher in antioxidants than conventional crops so you get more nutrition in every bite (3).
If you’re on a budget, here’s a list of top 15 foods that should always be bought organic due to high pesticide content. That way you can prioritize these foods.
According to the CDC, 90% of Americans exceed the recommended daily intake of sodium (4).
That’s because excessive amounts of sodium are in most processed foods. A can of soup often exceeds 1,200 mg of sodium, almost half the daily limit. Or an average frozen dinner contains almost 1,500 mg of sodium.
A diet that’s high in salt can cause your body to retain water. And retaining too much water can cause bloating.
One easy way to manage your salt intake is to avoid processed and packaged foods as they are the biggest culprits.
Have you ever noticed that you feel awful and bloated after consuming a particular food? It could be you have a food sensitivity or intolerance.
Food sensitivities are not like life-threatening food allergies. Sensitivities show as an intolerance to a food (or food group) and the symptoms are typically digestive distress.
Common food sensitivities include grains that have gluten and dairy-based foods. Intolerance can cause a wide range of issues including migraines, a runny nose, irritable bowel, rashes, chronic inflammation, and bloating (5).
If bloating is a common occurrence, try keeping a food journal so you can see if there’s one food that’s causing problems for you.