Belly bloat is not only uncomfortable but also keeps us from having that flat belly we all want. With just a few changes in our health habits we can help reduce the bloat and feel better.
One of the biggest culprits of belly bloat is an overgrowth of bacteria in our small intestine. This is called Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) which can be caused by taking antibiotics, poor digestion and diet, stress or food intolerances. When our gut bacteria is out of balance the bad bacteria start to take over causing all kinds of gastric distress. There are things you can do to help bring your gut bacteria back into a healthy balance.
- Eat a diet rich in probiotics, including fermented vegetables and fermented dairy products like kefir and yogurt. Feeding your healthy gut bacteria helps keep the bad bugs in check.1
- Eat a diet rich in fruits and vegetables that contain minerals and beneficial fiber to keep your gut functioning properly.2 Try including more sprouted beans, nuts and seeds to alkalize and provide super nutrient dense foods to your diet.Sprouts also provide more protein.
- Reduce your sugar consumption. Studies show that sugar feeds the bad bacteria and keeps the healthy bacteria from thriving.3 Sugar also increases inflammation in the body which wreaks havoc on your gut health.
- Cut out artificial sweeteners.Studies have shown that artificial sweeteners like aspartame and sucralose leads to glucose intolerance and an overgrowth of bad gut bacteria that leads to obesity.4
- Include a whole food supplement like EpiCor fermentate that’s clinically shown to help boost your healthy bacteria levels.
- Make sure you are hydrated. Hydration is important for keeping your digestion moving,and providing essential water to your digestive juices and enzymes. Slow moving digestion can lead to constipation and an overgrowth of bad bacteria. Hydrating is also important for a healthy mucosal lining of the intestines.
- Reduce stress…bad bacteria thrive in a stress induced body.Research has shown that stress has a negative impact on mammalian gut health as shown in this study on lowland gorillas.6
- If you have to take antibiotics, make sure you are including as much probiotic and prebiotic foods as possible to help your good bacteria recover.
- Try eliminating foods that have high FODMAPS.These are foods with particular carbohydrates call
Try making a few of these changes to your diet and see how much better your tummy feels!