The feeling of having a swollen belly or a bloated stomach is a common problem. This unpleasant sensation related to digestive issues brought on by the foods we eat. A diet that is high in fat and unhealthy carbohydrates can cause trapped gases which swell the abdomen and feel uncomfortable. The good news is that there are many ways to reduce bloating and the foods we eat play a huge role in preventing a swollen belly.
Drink enough water
One of the most important things to remember as far as reducing stomach bloating is to drink enough water. Water is essential to a healthy body and a healthy gut, so it is no surprise that many digestive issues are caused by not consuming enough of this vital liquid. By drinking water we give our stomachs a better chance of functioning properly to digest food without creating a bloated sensation.
It is important to drink water before your meal or after your meal rather than during. This is in order to hydrate the body efficiently. If we drink too much water at the same time as eating heavy foods this can actually contribute to bloating as the water cannot be absorbed quickly and efficiently.
Eat fruit between meals
Fruit is one of the most powerful anti-bloating foods we can eat. Fruit contains many minerals and vitamins that are essential for health, and they are also high in water content, potassium and folate. Fresh fruit has a lot of fibre which is excellent for gut health and promotes good digestion, but it is important to remember to eat fruit on an empty stomach or between meals to avoid fermentation in the gut, which can cause bloating.
Eat small portions
They say that everything in moderation is good, and this is very true when it comes to digestive health. It is always best to eat small portions of food rather than big, heavy meals. It is also always preferable to eat five smaller meals spread evenly throughout the day instead of two or three big meals with large gaps in between. Not only is it better for our digestion, it also helps to keep our metabolism high, which is good for reducing fat and keeping weight under control.
If we leave a long time between meals, the stomach gets very empty and so when we come to eat, we can often eat too much without realising. This can lead to bloating as the stomach has to swell quickly to cope with the large amount of food ingested. By eating smaller portions the stomach has time to process the foods at a steady rate, minimising the swelling of the stomach and more comfortable digestion.
Increase your intake of honey
Honey is a wonder food when it comes to improving digestion and preventing bloating. The properties of raw honey include anti-microbial agents, which prevent bacteria forming and protect the gut. In the past, honey was even used to clean wounds, such is its power. Manuka honey is one of the most powerful types of honey. It’s very concentrated in its properties and an excellent antioxidant that destroys harmful free radicals in the stomach.
The power of lemon juice
Lemon juice is another great option for improving digestive heath and reducing swelling. Often the reason a stomach feels bloated is due to a lack of stomach acid. The stomach needs acid to digest food properly and a lack of acidity can create problems such as bloating, trapped gas, abdominal pain and heartburn. Lemon contains a high level of acidity which helps the stomach break down foods, while it is also high in vitamin C and calcium, important vitamins and minerals for bodily health.
Lemon is acidic and brings this acidity to the stomach to aid digestion and prevent bloating, however, lemon actually has an alkalising effect on the rest of the body and as such increase our immunity, helping to fight disease and strengthening the body against carcinogens.