Easy Ways to Live Well: Steph McGovern discusses bloating
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Fennel seeds contain “gas-reducing oils”, said Dr Robynne Chutkan. Whether you crush the seeds or not, if you place them in a cup of boiling water and allow it to steep for 10 minutes, sipping on the beverage can help reduce a bloated belly. Another remedy suggested by Dr Chutkan is lemon water, as lemon juice stimulates the digestive system. If you’ve been eating a lot of salty foods lately, which can contribute to a bloated belly, then drinking warm lemon water might help.
Drinking the warm drink can help flush out the extra sodium (i.e. salt) in your body and help reduce any swelling.
Another option is to drink ginger tea, as the ginger root contains gingerols and shogaols.
These compounds are said to reduce inflammation in your gut, so it might be worthwhile cutting a few thin slices of ginger and steeping them in boiling water.
If you have been eating a well-varied, healthy diet, you might still be experiencing a bloated stomach.
This is because many foods that are good for us can also cause bloating.
For instance, cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts, can cause a bloated belly, certified Medical News Today.
Beans, lentils, and grains can also cause that unwanted stretched-out feeling.
To help resolve this issue, Dr Chutkan recommends adding kombu (edible kelp) to the pot where you cook your batch of beans, lentils, or grains.
Kombu contains an enzyme that is said to make it easier for your body to break down the foods that can be tough on your intestines.
This might help to prevent future bouts of a bloated belly, and it may help to reduce the one you might have now.
MedicineNet added that exercise can help you digestive system function at its best.
In addition, people are advised not to smoke, as this can aggravate bloating and gas.
Furthermore, bloating can be attributed to how fast you consume your meals.
In order to minimise the chance of developing a distended stomach, it’s best to slowly eat your food.
This notion is echoed by the NHS, who added that you must chew with your mouth closed to stop excess air from getting inside.
“Try not to swallow too much air,” the NHS emphasised. “Do not talk and eat at the same time, sit down to eat (sitting upright and not slumped over), reduce the amount of fizzy drinks you consume, stop chewing gum and chew with your mouth closed.”
Signs of bloating
The American Academy of Family Physicians pointed out “common symptoms” of bloating, which include:
- Stomach pain
Other signs include frequent burping or belching, and abdominal rumblings or gurgling.
Severe bloating can lead to:
- Blood in your stool
- Noticeable weight loss
- Vaginal bleeding (between your periods, or if you are postmenopausal)
- Heartburn that is getting worse
- Fever (due to an infection).
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