12 ways to beat the bloat

Can’t wear that dress tonight because your stomach’s suddenly ballooned? Our Super Foodist blogger Rick Hay provides 12 essential tips to beat the bloat

1. Take Probiotics

These aid digestion, mood and boost immunity too – but most importantly they reduce gas producing bacterial imbalances thereby helping to keep the tummy flat.

2. Relax

Stress causes a build up of cortisol and adrenaline which can over stimulate your digestive system leading to flatulence and bloating – think yoga or even a candle lit  bath with some magnesium rich Epsom salts or relaxing essential oils. Read our Calmista blogger on how to stay calm this Christmas

Candle-lit bath

3. Do core exercises

Strong Abs inhibit gas from pushing outwards resulting in less tummy distension

4. Decrease your dairy intake

As one of the main symptoms of lactose intolerance is bloating, decreasing your intake of diary products is a good first step. There’s lots of dairy alternatives like gut soothing rice milk or coconut yogurt that can be included into your bloat busting diet. You could decrease wheat too as wheat products can be quite challenging to the digestive system for many individuals.<

dairy products

Stay clear of dairy products to prevent bloating

5. Stop talking when eating

Tough we know, swallowing air causes bloating.

6. Eat bananas, kiwis and strawberries

These are high in potassium which acts as a diuretic and increases the amount of salt in your urine – that’s good news as excess salt can cause water retention in the small intestine.

kiwi and strawberry

Kiwis and strawberries are the way the forward

7. Skip the gum

Chewing gum that contains xylitol, sorbitol or mannitol can increase the production of gas in the digestive tract

chewing gum (smaller)

8. Try the herbs Vitex Berry or Chaste Tree 

It can help decrease hormonal bloating. It’s best taken as a tincture or tea with meals. This herb has been used traditionally to treat irregular menstruation.

9. Eat fewer bloating foods

Cut down on consumption of beans, onions, broccoli, cabbage, sprouts and cauliflower as these are known gas producing foods. Instead  apples, pears and melon which are pectin rich – this is a calming substitute that will keep your fibre levels up. Take probiotics and vegetable digestive enzymes to help balance the gut whilst you reduce these foods then you can increase them slowly.


Foods such as beans will increase bloating

10. Take vegetable digestive enzymes

These help balance the stomach and to relieve any symptoms including heartburn and indigestion.

11.  Try Aloe Vera Juice 

This is my top gut soother – it detoxifies the it’s anti microbial, anti bacterial and anti viral too. This plant reduces internal inflammation and as a bonus can help improve skin conditions like eczema and rosacea too.

12. Get checked for Coeliac disease

See your GP for a blood test if you suspect gluten may be behind your discomfort. If this proves negative, it may be worth having a food intolerance test. The York Test is a test you can do by mail that identifies foods you could be intolerant to, which may be causing your bloating, wind and cramping. A FirstStep test £9.99 can identify whether you might have an intolerance and if you do, a total Food and Drink Scan £299 will test you for possible intolerances to 158 foods.


Rick Hay is an Anti Ageing and Fitness Nutritionist with many years clinical experience in nutrition, naturopathy, botanical medicine and iridology. He specializes in obesity treatment and weight management. He writes a regular Natural Health and Fitness Blog for Healthista. Find out more at rickhay.co.uk. Follow Rick @nutritionalphys

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