Bloating. Sometimes it isn’t about crunches or cutting calories. You can go from a trim tummy to a burrito baby in just one meal. No matter how much you exercise or how carefully you watch nutrition, there are days your body decides to rebel. Bloating is the result of an unhappy digestive system or too much gas production or on really rough days: both. It makes stomachs look bigger and can feel very uncomfortable. Sometimes it feels like excess pressure, sometimes like a heavy brick sitting around your middle. Contrary to popular belief bloating doesn’t have much to do with drinking too much water or water retention (check out your feet and ankles if you are worried about water retention). It has more to do with your digestive system waving a flag for some attention and care. Don’t worry you are not alone, studies have found up to 30% of people report regularly feeling bloated.
The C word - ConstipationOne of the leading causes of bloating is constipation. If either one acts up, there is a good chance the other will too.
The simplest way to beat constipation is to add more soluble fibre to your diet. Some great food sources include legumes, avocados, bran cereals and other whole grains. If you can’t regularly maintain food sources there are also excellent supplements like Metagenics MetaFiber - sometimes you just can’t eat another bowl of grains. Instead dissolve powders like this in a half cup of liquid and drink. Adding more fibre to your diet can exacerbate gas if that is a particular challenge for you, so don’t forget to have a chat with your medical provider before dramatically adding fibre.
It is a fine balance - you want to eat high fibre foods but in some cases these can increase gas production. Try to establish trigger foods and avoid them. Likewise, carbonated beverages and chewing gum can introduce more air into your system. For some, as you do cardio the increased breathing rate leads to the swallowing of more air which can increase bloating until it finds a way to bubble out.
Find IntolerancesFood intolerances are common, and we grow out of them and into them throughout our lives. Symptoms include bloating, gas and others like diarrhea. Common intolerances are:
- Gluten and wheat
Some intolerances can be alleviated or suppressed with aid of a supplement such as Metagenics SpectraZyme Gluten Digest, which aids in the digestion of gluten.