We're all familiar with that uncomfortable feeling of bloating in our belly after chowing down a large meal. It starts with a dull pain, and before we know it, we're inflicted by the extreme discomfort and the near immobilization of bloating. But it doesn't have to be that way. The are ways to combat that terrible bloated feeling or stop it before it even becomes a problem.
Most of the time, bloating is caused by something we've eaten. The good news is that there are foods that help prevent the unwanted balloon belly. Here are just a few of the foods that will help reduce bloating or help prevent it in the first place.
Snacking on slices of watermelon to get rid of belly bloat may seem like an oxymoron, but it helps to flush your body of water. It's 92% water and contains 170 milligrams of anti-bloating potassium, so it's perfect for deflating your distended belly while still making you feel more full. Not to mention, it's also amazingly delicious and refreshing. And don't worry, eating a few of the seeds on accident won't cause you to balloon up either.
Like watermelon, this food is a natural diuretic--meaning it promotes the release of water through urine. In addition to hydrating and reducing water weight, cucumbers contain the flavonol antioxidant quercetin in them which helps to fight inflammation in your gastrointestinal tract--a system pertaining to your digestive organs. After a meal, it's smart to nibble on a couple of slices of cucumber. You can add slices to a water bottle to make it feel like you are at a relaxing spa or cut up some fresh mint and sprinkle with olive oil for a delicious and refreshing snack.
This food is high in potassium, which helps rid your body of excess water and sodium. In addition to potassium, tomatoes are packed with the antioxidant lycopene. Lycopene has been proven to have anti-inflammatory effects making them a powerful debloating snack or addition to a salad. To get the full effect, it's best to eat them raw or as a fresh juice. Tomatoes have even been proven to decrease the chance of heart disease.
Not only are kiwis the cutest fruit, but they are the most nutritious as well. Kiwis are loaded with fiber which help to solve the problem of bloating due to constipation or Irritable Bowel Syndrome. In fact, a study suggested that eating kiwi can lessen the effects of IBS. Who knew that a tiny fruit could pack so many benefits?
These long green stalks are a great source of prebiotics and probiotics, which help to maintain a healthy balance of good bacteria. An imbalance in gut bacteria has been known to cause bloating. Who cares if they make your pee smell funny if they get the job done in the bloating department?
Lemon has been known for its detoxing power. Being a natural diuretic, they help to remove extra water weight. In addition to reducing a bloated belly, they have also been known to aid weight loss. To receive the benefits of lemon, drop a couple of slices in your water. On top of the weight loss benefit, it will make your water taste delicious!
Aside from being an adored fruit that makes your morning toast taste better, it packs a punch of debloating benefits. Its high potassium content helps to flush out excess sodium and it's enzymes aid in the digestion of fatty food. Therefore, don't feel guilty for adding a little extra avocado to your toast. This doesn't mean you can eat a ton on guacamole though, because what do you normally eat guacamole with? Chips, salty chips. They will have the opposite effect and just make you more bloated.
A handful of almonds have powerful digestive benefits. Their high fiber content and prebiotics help to fight digestive related belly bloat. On top of all of that, these little nuts have been proven to decrease cholesterol, contain as much calcium as 1/4 cup of milk and are packed with vitamins and nutrients.
There are plenty of foods out there that can help prevent bloating, but there are just as many that will either cause you to bloat or make your bloating that much worse. It should come as no surprise that the following types of food and drinks made the list, but for those who don't know, we're here to help you out.
Here are just a few of foods you should avoid if you are one to be affected by bloating:
You can take a more proactive approach to relieve bloating by simply exercising. You won't need much besides some comfortable clothes (that you're probably already wearing due to the bloating) and maybe a yoga mat if you plan on stretching the bloated feeling away. You don't even need to attempt anything too strenuous. Just try out some simple yoga stretches.
If exercising is not your thing - or if you don't have the time or space - you can try a number of drinks that all help with the pain of bloating. This includes everything from hot drinks like green tea and peppermint tea to smoothies including things like watermelon or pineapple. Just be careful with the smoothies. Adding ingredients like yogurt, milk and ice cream are not going to help your bloating issue, and will actually make it much worse.
And if you want to attack the bloat before it even arrives, you might want to look into the idea of taking supplements as a good preventative measure. With ingredients like peppermint, ginger, and fennel, these supplements will prevent the issue from getting out of hand.
If you often find yourself suffering from the discomfort of bloating, your body might be trying to tell you something about your eating habits. So, if you're tired of feeling bloated at night and the following morning, try out any of these techniques.
It's always a good idea to let your digestive system take a break from time to time, and what better time than when you're supposed to be sleeping. By stopping your food intake a few hours before you go to bed, you'll give your body enough time to digest properly.
It's never a good idea to a living, breathing stress ball, but for some reason, we do it anyway. If we allow ourselves time to wind down, relax, and distress from our hectic lives, our bodies will reward us. When our stress levels are high, our bodies go into panic mode, which causes pain in the gut to be intensified. By relaxing and not stressing out about everything, our bodies can go through their processes will little to no interference.