In our hectic lives, the discomfort of bloating can feel like an unwelcome visitor.  That annoying feeling of tightness, gas, and general discomfort not only affects our physical well-being but can also dampen our spirits.  At some stage, my bloating was so bad that I looked pregnant and I had to wear stretchy leggings.  I was so self conscious that it stopped me from going out.  But here’s the good news – it doesn’t last forever, you can do something about it.  

Why do we bloat?

Bloating is like that friend who shows up unannounced and overstays their welcome.  Common causes of bloating are:

  • Constipation
  • Food intolerances
  • Gut bacteria imbalance
  • Lack of digestive enzymes/Hcl
  • Stress
  • Eating too quickly
  • Drinking too quickly with your meal
  • Fermentable carbohydrates (foods high in starch or sugar)

The Power of Diet

One of the most potent tools in your arsenal against bloating is your diet.  Yes, you read that right; the foods you choose to put on your plate play a pivotal role in preventing and managing bloating.  Let’s dive into the benefits:

  1. Taming the Culprits: Some foods are notorious for causing bloating. Think carbonated drinks, artificial sweeteners and ‘FODMAP’ fruits and vegetables such as apples, cherries, brussels sprouts, garlic, leeks, mushrooms and onions.  By identifying and reducing your intake of these culprits, you can significantly cut down on bloating episodes.
  2. Fibre: The Digestive Hero: A diet rich in fibre, especially soluble fibre found in oats and legumes, can work wonders for your digestive system. Fiber keeps things moving smoothly, preventing constipation and the resulting bloating.
  3. Anti-Inflammatory Foods: Foods such as ginger and turmeric can help soothe an irritated digestive tract. Including them in your diet may reduce the frequency and severity of bloating.
  4. The Magic of Probiotics: Probiotics are your gut’s best friends. Incorporating yogurt (with the good bacteria), kefir, sauerkraut and other probiotic-rich foods into your diet can promote a healthier gut microbiome, potentially reducing bloating.
  5. Add either ½ a lemon or a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in warm filtered water and drink 15 mins before eating.

Meal Planning for Bloating Relief

Now that we’ve uncovered the benefits of diet and nutrition, here are a few meal suggestions to help with the bloat.

Breakfast: Kickstart your day with a bowl of rolled oats topped with blueberries and a sprinkle of chia seeds. Oats are a fantastic source of soluble fibre, while blueberries offer a dose of antioxidants.  I soak my oats and seeds the night before so that they’re more digestible the next day.

Lunch: Opt for a vibrant salad with leafy greens, cucumbers and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.  Leafy greens are gentle on the stomach and olive oil’s anti-inflammatory properties can be soothing.

Dinner: Enjoy a portion of grilled or baked salmon with steamed asparagus and quinoa.  Salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, known for their anti-inflammatory effects.

Testing

If you’ve tried the above and you’re bloating is not improving, it’s time to test (if you haven’t already).  These days, I don’t guess, I test.  The MetaXplore GI stool test gives a comprehensive report as to the ‘why’s of your gut issues, including bloating.  You could have bacterial pathogens, you could have parasites, you could have pancreatic insufficiency (low enzymes), you could be sensitive to gluten and much more.

The Bio-Compatability Food test tells you which foods you’re sensitive to.  I have found this to be very successful for various challenging gut issues.

Both these tests can be found in the ‘Healthy Gut Healthy You’ program.  Click here for more information or

Book a free 20 min health assessment Zoom call and we can have a chat about your health issues.

Best of luck with deflating the bloat!

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