While mealtimes with friends and family bring delicious foods to feast on, the never-ending amount that fills your fridge, your table and then your mouth leave you, ultimately, feeling rather bloated from all that gas that builds up in your stomach or intestines. Overeating is the biggest cause of this, and foods that are hard to digest, like fatty and fibrous items, make it even more of an issue, as can retaining too much water thanks to high-sodium foods. With that said, here are some food tips if you don't want to spend your time with the family feeling like a giant heap.
Foods to Ditch
With beer comes bubbles, causing a bloated belly. Research also says alcohol can cause an overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine, which can make you feel bloated too.
2. Frozen Dinners
There's a lot of sodium in processed foods, so check the labels to make sure you're not about to take down some serious amounts of salt.
The fiber in veggies brings on gas in your Gi tract and cruciferous veggies have raffinose, which is a sugar that created even more gas. Try to cook your veggies to avoid this issue, that way you still get the nutrients you need.
Milk also releases gas when it gets broken down, and if you're lactose intolerant, you'll really notice the effects this has on you.
5. Diet Soda
The bubbles will bloat you, as will the artificial sweeteners that are in these beverages because your body doesn't know how to digest them. Research has also discovered that they mess with your body's natural gut bacteria, known as microbiota, resulting in a bigger belly. [bctt tweet="How to Stop Bloating: Foods to Avoid and Foods to Eat"]
Your body has to work overtime to break down the sugar and fiber in beans, and when it does, more gas is created. They're extremely healthy, however, so just pick and choose when to eat them. Having a big meal? Perhaps steer clear of beans and edamame.
People tend to swallow more often when they chew gum or suck on hard candy, causing more air to go down the hatch. This extra air can get backed up in your intestinal tract causing you to feel bloated. Sugar-free gum is the worst due to the artificial sweeteners.
Foods to Grab
Potassium helps to counteract the effects sodium has on your gut, so eat up!
Fennel seeds are not only a diuretic, but also come complete with a compound know to help with digestive issues. Put them into a meat or pasta dish, or make a tea.
When your body is retaining water, it's likely because it thinks it is on the verge of dehydration, in which case the cure is actually to drink more water and consume water-filled foods. Watermelon is a great option and is also a great source of potassium.
This is great for soothing the stomach, and studies have also discovered that it can help to fight off cramping and gas. Try a cup of peppermint tea after you eat your food.
Cucumbers are complete with quercetin, an anti-inflammatory that can help in reducing swelling.
An enzyme called papain can be found in papayas, which has been shown to break down proteins in your GI tract, which in turns makes the process of digesting tough foods easier.
This is not only an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, but is also known to fight bloating as well as aging. Chew on it raw or have a cup of ginger tea. Are you a fan of any of these anti-bloating options? For more advice on how to eat for a happy body, check out the BodyRock Meal Plan!