Bloating is an unpleasant and unattractive bodily reaction that many women (and even men) suffer from. Bloating is when it feels like you have ballooned in size overnight. Your clothes may even feel tighter! Feeling uncomfortable like you have too much gas in your system? This is also a sign of bloating.
While it can be uncomfortable and make our clothing fit poorly, it is not a permanent state of being. There are a number of different ways that you can relieve bloating and reduce the likelihood of becoming bloated. Simple lifestyle changes can make a huge difference when it comes to taking on excess water or gas, which are the primary culprits behind bloating to begin with.
What follows are some highly effective tips to reduce and even eliminate bloating.
Slow the Pace of Eating
We live in such a fast paced society that many of us feel that we have no choice but to wolf down our meals as fast as we can. Problem is, this is significantly contributing to the feeling of bloat. When you eat really fast, you end up taking in a lot of air with your food, which will lead to bloat and discomfort.
Eating slowly has a variety of different benefits from reducing bloat to reducing the overall amount of food we eat in a sitting. Try to make your meals last about thirty minutes.
Cut Down On Carbonated Beverages
Carbonated beverages, due to their nature, are big culprits when it comes to the battle against bloat. Forced air bubbles are what make a beverage carbonated to begin with. Drinking an excessive amount of carbonated beverages will increase the amount of air you take into your stomach and thus, likely increase your feelings of bloating. Cutting down on carbonated beverages should solve this issue.
Chewing Gum Leads to Excess Air Intake
While it is true that gum makes a great appetite suppressant, it can also lead to feelings of bloat. When we chew gum, we take in air that ends up in our stomachs. This increased air intake can lead to feelings of bloating and discomfort. If you are suffering from chronic bloating and chew a lot of gum, try cutting down and it may just reduce your issues.
Sugar-Free Foods and Artificial Sweeteners
Many people look towards sugar-free and diet foods as a means to cut their sugar and calorie intake. While this can be a good thing, artificial sweeteners cannot be digested by the body and have been shown to be responsible for feelings of bloat. Avoid eating an excessive amount of sugar-free foods.
Reduce Sodium Intake
Sodium causes the body to retain water, which, in turn, contributes to bloating and discomfort. Watching your salt intake will help with a variety of ailments, including the tendency to retain water and bloat.
Careful With the Beans and Cruciferous Veggies
Certain veggies, such as broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage, as well as beans and legumes, are known to cause bloating. This is also true when someone starts to eat a large amount of raw fruits and vegetables. This does not mean you should not eat these healthy foods, but that you should watch your intake of them until the body becomes used to it.
Smaller, More Frequent Meals
Bloating is often a product of digestion. When you eat too fast or too much, the body has to work harder to process that food and this, naturally, leads to a good deal of discomfort. One of the best ways to reduce bloat and also stay fuller, longer, is to eat smaller, more frequent meals. Smaller meals are easier for your stomach to digest and eating more often keeps one feeling satisfied.
Introduce Probiotics Into Your Diet
There are certain foods like yogurt and fermented foods that contain what are called probiotics. These substances actually work to keep a healthy balance of the flora and fauna in the gut, promoting the growth of healthy digestive bacteria. Adding probiotics to your diet is an easy way to reduce bloating.
Avoid Excessive Stress
We now know that stress contributes to a wide variety of common health problems from obesity to heart disease. What may come as a bit of surprise is that stress can cause you to retain water and air and cause bloating. There are many reasons to reduce your stress levels and if you are suffering from chronic bloat, this could be highly beneficial to solving the problem.
Check for Food Allergies
Bloating can also be your body’s response to an allergen or toxin. It is important to rule out common food allergies like chocolate, dairy, and wheat. It has been shown that mild food allergies can be responsible for chronic bloating and other gastrointestinal issues.
The tips listed above are by no means an exhaustive list. There are many more ways to naturally reduce bloating and the associated discomfort. These are just some of the easiest and most effective ways to reduce excessive air intake and water retention, which are the common causes of bloating.