Nobody likes a bloated tummy… especially when you’re already eating healthy!! I have a very sensitive tummy, so as soon as I eat something ‘wrong’ my tummy swells up and gets very uncomfortable. So, I did what any ‘wanna-be health coach’ would do– Research! Apparently, there are certain foods and habits that you should avoid when trying to ‘beat the bloat’. Here are a few that seem to work for me:
1. Cut out/ limit artificial sweeteners- Okay, we all know that artificial sweeteners DON’T do a body good… but it’s easy to consume them even when you think you’re being healthy. Ever hear of protein bars, like Think Thin bars?! Sure, they may have little or no ‘sugar’… but how do you think they taste so sweet… Cue artificial sweeteners! Time to give those bars ‘the boot’… or at least limit them!
2. Reduce carbonated drinks- I’m not just talking about soda here… I haven’t had a sip of soda in about 6 years… but I have to say, I LOVE seltzer water. It’s just so festive… so bubbly and inviting… a party in a can…Well, not so much. All that carbonation leaves me feeling bloated and uncomfortable. If you want to flavor your water, try some classic H2O with crushed ice and fresh lemon or juicy blueberries for a touch of happy color and flavor!
3. Stop chewing gum (especially on an empty tummy)- Ohhh gum! There are so many fun flavors to enjoy when those around you are nibbling on sugary sweets and tasty snacks. Think about all the calories you can save by replacing those treats with a piece of gum! I used to like gum… but I know it’s not the best thing in the world (obviously, not the worst either), but come beating the bloat, it’s important to keep the ‘gum chomping’ to a minimum (it always give me a tummy ache). All that chewing makes you take in excess air. No thank you!
4. Limit drinking through a straw- Uh… I’m soooo guilty of this one! Everyone who knows me knows I always carry around a huge water cup. It’s clear and colorful, and the ice cubes make it a bit noisy, but it’s kind of my ‘signature look’! I fill it up at every meal, as well… but lately, I’ve been trying to make sure that I take the time to use a regular straw-less cup, at least some of the time. This prevents me from swallowing excess air.
6. Eat fibrous foods- Fresh fruit, veggies and (gluten free) whole grains help to ‘keep your system regular.’ They help to keep everything ‘moving’ and thus, they help promote a flat tummy… just be sure not to over do these foods, especially raw broccoli which is known to cause belly bloat. Remember… all things in moderation (even the healthy stuff). Also, be sure to steer clear of processed ‘fiber’ bars. Those things are often filled with junky sweeteners and will actually make you bloated because of the excessive amount of manufactured and totally unnatural fiber… I mean seriously, you don’t find Fiber One bars growing on trees! Stick to all-natural and totally nourishing foods to ‘beat the bloat.’