It’s normal to feel some bloating after you eat, but if it’s to the point of discomfort and pain, then health experts advise it may be time to rethink your diet.
Bloating is more common of an issue than you may have initially thought. Up to 30% of people have actually reported bloating as a digestive problem that causes discomfort, according to the supplement brand Bio-Kult. With summer coming up (hello bathing suit season), we want to fully enjoy our favorite treats and foods without the worry of pain caused by bloating.
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If you’re looking for ways to improve your digestive health, Bio-Kult’s team of health experts put together a few simple tips for improving your diet below. As an added note, if you’re experiencing extreme pain, these tips may not be a cure. Everyone’s body is different, and in severe cases, you should always seek out the advice of a doctor or medical professional for the best treatment.
Expert-recommended tips for preventing bloating
1. Improve your diet
One of the first steps you can do is take control of your diet, registered nutritionist Hannah Braye advises. Reducing your intake of high sugar, refined carbs, and fatty processed foods and instead replacing them with home-cooked meals made from fresh whole food ingredients can lead to almost immediate noticeable improvements.
2. Try eliminating dairy and/or gluten from your diet
“Some people also find trialing a gluten and/or dairy-free diet for a short period of time can help them identify if these foods are triggers,” said Hannah. Once you identify your trigger foods, you can make further adjustments to your diet to have a healthier digestive system.
3. Practice mindful eating
Sometimes when we’re feeling stressed, our first reaction is to grab our favorite snack for comfort and distract ourselves. Bio-Kult’s experts, though, recommend being mindful of where you’re eating.
“By not eating in front of the computer, tv, or phone, [and instead], eat slowly, and chew food properly, is another key step in reducing stress levels (especially around mealtimes),” said the brand.
4. Drink tea
Teas and herbs have been used to help reduce symptoms, including bloating. If you’re in need of symptomatic relief, then an herbal tea made with peppermint or ginger has been found to produce a “carminative” effect on your digestive tract.
“Fennel is particularly effective for bloating,” added Hannah, who also provided tips on how to introduce it into your diet. “Try soaking a teaspoon of fennel seeds in hot water and drink as a tea after eating, or chew on the fennel seeds themselves. Some herbalists will also offer fennel drops that can be mixed with a little water and drunk after eating.”
5. Eat more bitter foods
Typically when we make adjustments to our diets, we focus on what to eliminate when we should also consider what we should be having more of. Bitter foods such as salad leaves like rocket, chicory, endives, watercress, artichokes, dandelion leaves, and radicchio are important for stimulating bile flow.
“Bile is produced by the liver and then stored in the gallbladder until it needs to be released into the intestines to emulsify and break down dietary fats,” explained Hannah. “Bitter foods help to stimulate the digestive system, triggering the release of bile, so if you struggle to digest fatty foods, having a bitter salad as a starter or as a side salad may help. Try adding a squeeze of lemon juice for an extra kick.”
6. Introduce a supplement into your diet
There are instances when bloating can be a sign of an imbalance in the micro-organisms in the gut, according to the brand. To help resolve this issue, experts recommend taking a daily supplement with garlic, oregano, and live (good) bacteria. A study conducted by the supplement brand even found a significant reduction in digestive issues after people with IBS incorporated one of its supplements into their routine.
“In a recent clinical trial in IBS sufferers, Bio-Kult Original reduced abdominal distension by 66% when taken for 4 months and improved many other digestive symptoms and quality of life,” Bio-Kult said.
Don’t let the pain and discomfort of bloating get in the way of you spending your summertime the way you want. These simple tips are not only an all-natural way to improve your digestion but can also help you live a healthier lifestyle.
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