Why do some meals leave us feeling like we’re going to burst while others leave us feeling perfectly full? And often times it has nothing to do with whether you’re eating healthy since some green veggies can cause us to feel seriously bloated. Bloating can even make our stomach protrude out more than normal and give us an uncomfortably ‘heavy’ feeling. So if bloating is a problem for you, you might want to avoid heavily salted foods, cruciferous veggies, beans, or carbonated drinks.
Besides cutting out certain foods from your diet, you can also look to add these 10 foods to your meals to help fight bloating.
Sometimes bloating can be a related to your gut health. Having an imbalance of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ bacteria can cause you to feel bloated and even a little sick. Eating yogurt with active culture can aid in digestion and prevent belly bloat by increasing the ‘good’ bacteria in your system (lactobacillus and bifidobacterium).
Ginger has been used to help digestion as far back as from Ancient Greece, so it’s stood the test of time! We know now that ginger is a herb known as carminatives that increase circulation, soothe menstral cramps, control blood sugar levels, and reduce stomach bloat.
Peppermint capsules have been shown to reduce stomach bloating, digestive issues, and painful gas in several studies. So it might be worth sipping some peppermint tea after a big meal or adding it to your fruit salad.
Potassium-rich foods like bananas can prevent water retention in your body by reducing your sodium levels (too much salt can result in bloating). The soluble fiber in bananas can also prevent or relieve constipation which is not only uncomfortable but can leave your belly feeling swollen and sore.
Chamomile has shown to have properties that relieve intestinal gas, diarrhea, and has anti-inflammatory properties. Meaning a cup of chamomile tea before or after dinner can help prevent and relieve a bloated stomach.
Due to the content of a unique compound, kiwi can help your body digest certain proteins from meat, dairy, and fish faster. Kiwi has been shown to help with digestion and prevent the uncomfortable ‘stuffed’ or bloated feeling after a meal. So grab a bowl of kiwi for dessert to help your body digest your meal and prevent stomach discomfort.
Turmeric’s endless health benefits include reducing inflammation, fight heart disease, and potentially fighting cancer. In addition, it’s also shown to ease digestion, reduce digestive issues, and reduce uncomfortable bloating as well. However some studies show that it can aggrevate any existing stomach ulcers to speak to your health professional if you have any pre-existing conditions before changing your diet.
Time to add some more guacamole to your meals! The unique blend of oils in cilantro have shown to relax digestive muscles and alleviate uncomfortable stomach bloating. One study even showed that it can help reduce symptoms of IBS. If that wasn’t enough of a reason, cilantro is rich in carotenoids, boosts bone health, and has been shown to help with symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Any food that is high in water content will help you pass excess salt out of your body by acting as a natural diuretic. Getting enough water also helps you avoid water retention which can be painful and uncomfortable. As if we needed another reason to eat watermelon!
There are multiple benefits to drinking water including getting a boost of vitamin C, potassium, magnesium, and copper, supporting your body’s digestive system, and helping to flush out toxins. It also has the added benefit of helping to reduce bloat by acting as a gentle laxative and helping to move your meals through your digestive tract easily. Meaning food isn’t sitting in your stomach longer than it needs to be making you feel uncomfortable.
Looking for more advice on eating for optimal health? Read our article on Foods for a Healthy Thyroid next!