By Sofia Potente
Ease Bloating Naturally
Ahh the mystery of bloating. Is your child’s tummy persistently bloated? Or perhaps it’s your own – it starts flat in the morning but by the afternoon, it’s like you’re 3 months pregnant.
Did you know 16-30% of people report feeling bloated regularly? All that excess gas stuck in the belly can be so uncomfortable, making you feel and look stuffed or swollen.
Good news is there are some simple things you can do to ease bloating naturally. We’ve been dealing with it for years, and have found what works and what doesn’t – both in myself and my son.
Here are 3 approaches bound to help relieve bloating once and for all!
1. Chew your food!
Chew and eat your food more slowly and mindfully. Such a simple thing, right? But how often do we eat on the run or scoff our food down unconsciously?
Eating in a hurry or without chewing leads to swallowing excess air and poor digestion, as large food particles reach the stomach that have not been predigested.
Chewing our food is the first step to proper digestion. Chewing releases saliva which contains digestive enzymes. The longer you chew? The more time these enzymes have to break your food down.
Properly chewed food also allows your stomach to work more efficiently as it has been predigested by the teeth.
We have a rule at home to only eat sitting at the table – well, most of the time! And we try to remind our kids (and sometimes ourselves!) there is plenty of time to eat – no need to hurry.
Don’t underestimate this simple tip – best of all, it’s free and you can do it straight away.
2. Rule out hidden food allergies or intolerances
If you’re dealing with symptoms like bloating, gas and indigestion, it’s worth looking into food intolerances. Food intolerances are more common that we think – and often go undiagnosed.
The most common intolerances are gluten or wheat, egg, lactose or fructose. Fructose and lactose fall under a group of indigestible carbohydrates or fiber know as FODMAPs which can cause digestive distress for many people.
Low FODMAP diet results are pretty impressive! A 2009 study in the Journal of Crohn’s and Colitis found that 50% of patients with irritable bowel showed significant improvement in bloating and flatulence when reducing FODMAPs. Another study in 2010 found it reduced gas by 75% in patients with IBS.