It can be annoying to have a stomach full of gas especially when you are in the company of people, and you are not one to hold a fart in for too long. The point where you feel like a balloon that might pop any second forces you to try recalling all that you have consumed that possibly made you bloated.
Having gas in your belly can make you uncomfortable and cause your stomach to appear physically bigger so if you are bloated, it means you can’t afford to put on tight clothes because you will end up looking pregnant. There is hope however if you need a flat tummy for that date, as bloating is very avoidable.
While a lot of people believe that bloating is caused by an accumulation of water in the abdomen, that is nothing but an old wives tale as the belly is no place for liquid to gather.
Wondering what causes gas to gather in your abdomen and make you feel fat? We have some answers and tips for stomach-slimming.
- Constipation: Avoiding constipation is also avoiding bloating. Consuming too little fluids, fibre, and too small physical activities can make you constipated. To prevent constipation, feed on diets rich in fibre, fruits, veggies, legumes, seeds, nuts, and enough water.
- Food allergies: Food intolerance can lead to bloating, but a lot of people do not get tested by a doctor before they assume their bloating is caused by a particular food, so they end up avoiding healthy grains and dairy products. If you assume that you are lactose intolerant or, certain foods make you bloated, consult your doctor before avoiding these foods. You can reduce the intake of the suspected foods or eat them with other foods to help deal with the collection of gases in your abdomen.
- Take things a little slower: If you are a fast eater and you are in so much hurry that you do not chew your foods properly, you might end up swallowing air that lead to bloating. We understand that some people eat fast so they can eat more but it is healthier to eat slowly. The benefits of slowing down when you eat is that you don’t get to swallow air; you eat less and get full easily. Chewing properly helps your food digest better as digestion begins in the mouth. Did you know that when you chew slowly you enjoy your food better? You are welcome!
- Don’t consume too much carbonated drinks: The more soda you consume, the more gas you invite into your system. The fizz in soft drinks even the so-called diet drinks can cause air to collect in your belly. To avoid getting gas in your tummy is to stay away from carbonated drinks and replace them with flavored water. Water is healthier and fizz free so you get the satisfaction that your body craves. If you can’t take water because it’s not sweetened, opt for tea or other soothing beverages that are fizz free.
- Do not chew on too much bubble gum: Bubble gums are great for keeping the mouth busy, but you can’t chew gums all the time if you want to avoid bloating. Chewing gums can cause you to swallow air and get bloated, so it is best you work on your chewing gum habits and munch on a hard vegetable, fruit, or candy if you must have something to eat. Low-fat popcorn is also an excellent option for snacks to replace your bubble gum with.
- Watch out for some sugar-free foods: Artificially sweetened foods are almost unavoidable, but they are a potential cause of bloating. Avoid consuming more than two serving of such foods and drink not more than a glass of artificially sweetened beverage per day.
- Avoid or limit sodium consumption: Foods that have been highly processed are usually low in fibre and high in sodium. This means that you have to cultivate the habit of reading food labels before you purchase them. Any canned product that has above 500mg of sodium per serving should not find its way into your shopping basket.
- Be careful of gassy veggies and beans: For a lot of people, beans are a major cause of bloating as they possess some gassy compounds. If you are new to eating beans, make sure you introduce them into your diet slowly so that your body can adjust to the gassy compound. Vegetables like Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and cauliflower that belong to the cruciferous family are naturally gassy. But avoiding these nutritious foods is not advisable, so you can choose to eat just small portions of them or take an anti-gas product before eating beans or these gassy veggies. Besides, cruciferous vegetables are high-fiber and great for digestion so you should enjoy the benefits of having them as part of your meal.
- Avoid big servings and opt for smaller ones more often: Instead of eating three large meals per day, you can have about six small portions of food. Eating small servings more frequently allows you to avoid getting bloated and helps you to manage hunger and control your blood sugar.
- Try anti-bloating foods and drinks: Foods and beverages like pineapples, yoghurt, peppermint tea, and ginger contain good bacteria (probiotics) that help reduce bloating, so it is a good idea to use them to your advantage. The next time you get bloated, try chewing on pineapple and experience its de-bloating wonders.
If you experience bloating often or you have a slightly bigger tummy due to weight gain, do not consider the option of taking water pills, laxatives, or even skipping meals to fix your weight or bloating problem. Watch the things you eat and adopt regular work out routines that focus on your belly.