Beat the bloat
Do you ever get bloated?
I remember one time - it was a Sunday. We'd been invited to friends for lunch.
The night before had been a lot of fun (pre-children, obviously!) but I thought I should be kind to my liver that day.
I chose to drink apple juice or something like that.
Oh my word!
As the lunch progressed and the afternoon drew out, my tummy got bigger and bigger.
I got more and more uncomfortable. . And for awhile I kept on drinking the apple juice - what a mistake!
It was the worst feeling ever.
Has this ever happened to you?
How to get over bloating –
A good day can go from fantastic to miserable so quickly!
One moment you’re feeling amazing, the next moment you feel like a whale.
Your pants feel like they’ll pop!
It is so common that most people think it’s normal!
It’s not normal and I’m going to give you a few guidelines to help you get over the bloat.
Bloating is a symptom.
Your body is telling you that something is not right.
When you eat meat, if it is not digested properly –
- which remember starts in your mouth then goes on to your stomach and then into your intestines –
if it is not well digested by the time it reaches your large intestine, it is going to start fermenting.
That causes gas and as a result you bloat.
Sometimes carbohydrates don’t’ digest properly because certain enzymes are out of play.
That’s going to cause gas as a result of the food fermenting in the large intestine.
And gut bacteria is another reason for bloating.
Our body has millions upon billions of “good” and “bad” bacteria. When the “bad” bacteria are in the majority that leads to an imbalance. The result? Bloating and gas.
Your body may be sensitive to or intolerant to some foods.
These foods then could lead to bloating. It is the sugar in food that is likely to cause the bloating.
Think about it… if your body is not able to fully digest the food, then the bacteria that live in your digestive system are going to feed on that sugar. When they do that, it is usually the “bad” bacteria and then you bloat.
Here are some common foods – milk & dairy products, pasta, wheat and oat brans, artificial sweeteners, fruit juices, beans and lentils.
Constipation can also leave you with a tummy area that has a hard feeling and gas.
The biggest reasons for this situation are not eating enough fibre rich foods, not drinking enough water and not moving enough.
Being dehydrated can also cause you to bloat because your body starts to retain water.
As that happens you swell.
It’s a good idea to aim for 8 glasses of water per day.
It doesn’t seem to make sense to drink more water if your body is retaining it. But when your body is dehydrated it holds on to water to try and stop the situation happening again.
With dehydration comes the slowing down of digestion. When digestion slows down the food that you eat sits longer in your gut.
The result? Fermentation and gas.
The next time bloating happens to you, these questions will help you to find out what causes your bloating.
Here are 4 foods to beat bloating;
And avoid these 5 foods & drinks
The bottom line – avoid certain foods and drinks, drink 8 glasses water each day and move regularly throughout the day.
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Our Diet isn't just about Food...
A few years ago, well into my nutrition journey, I discovered a book by Liz Lipski called Digestive Wellness.
It was an eye-opener.
The crux of the matter is that there's more and more evidence showing that whatever happens in the digestive system is not staying in the digestive system.
The imbalances in the digestive system are having an impact on the rest of our body .
Symptoms and diseases that we would never think could be related to the state of our digestive system are linked. For example eczema, infertility, chronic fatigue syndrome, arthritis, migraines.
The word Diet comes from the Greek word Diata. This means our manner of living.
So how did the meaning of diet gets so messed up in recent years? To now mean - restriction, guilt, deprivation and weight loss?
If diet means way of life then it's not just about food, is it ?
It's about everything.
The food we choose to eat. What we're thinking. How we are moving. The TV programs and radio shows we listen to and watch .
Maybe it is because we usually change our food when we go on diet that diet now means a special course of food to which a person restricts themselves either to lose weight or for medical reasons . It also means the kinds of food that a person or animal or community habitually eats.
I don't really want to use the terms good or bad diet so I'll go with healthy vs unhealthy .
I think we can agree that a healthy diet in terms of food would be made up of these parts .
Who foods that are home cooked. Food that doesn't contain artificial colours or flavours. Food that has healthy fats. Food with no refined sugars. Food that has fibre.
And what would a healthy diet in terms of how you're living look like?
Getting back to the food part , which is where my passion lies , I think the that what's important is to find a way of eating that supports your health .
That works for you and your family.
That supports the wellness of your digestive system.
Do you agree that if there is stuff going on in your tummy like bloating, wind, constipation, cramps, heartburn, runny tummy then you don't feel your best?
More and more studies are showing that the digestive system has an impact on the rest of our body . Symptoms and diseases that we would never think are related to our digestive system are in fact now showing up as related.
So what is a girl to do?
I think that a conscious awareness of what you're choosing to feed yourself is the first step.
Once you know what you're regularly eating with your family and during the day then you can make small changes. Changes that you can adopt for the long term.
So your first step is to complete a food diary.
This Isn't just what you pop in your mouth. Make a note of symptoms you may feel or have afterwards. Take notice if your energy drops or your mood changes and write it down.
See if you can match specific foods to the way you feel mentally and physically .
Complete this over 10 to 14 days.
I'd love to help you examine your food log at the end.
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If you know anyone who needs to improve their wellness please feel free to share this with them.