Our health coach, Safia Morsly-Fikai, is here with some tips for fighting that bloated feeling.
Bloating and poor digestion are extremely common. Frequent and intense symptoms of bloating often signal a gut issue that can be prevented and cured over time with proper nutrition and some supplementation.
One of the main causes of bloating is called dysbiosis. In simple terms, it means that the bacteria in the gut is out of balance. The ratio of healthy bacteria that help your digestion and boost your immunity is lower than that of the unhealthy bacteria such as yeast and candida.
What factors can reduce the population of healthy bacteria in our GI tract? A lot of things, really, but some common factors are:
- Poor nutrition, and a diet that includes processed and packaged foods
- Intense stress
- Overuse of antibiotics
- Long-term use of acid-suppressing drugs that change the stomach’s pH
- Hormone therapy
- Parasitic infections
- Sugar and alcohol
5 Actions to take that promote a healthy gut and reduce bloating:
- Try an elimination diet for 23 days. Eliminate gluten, dairy, eggs, soy, fast food and alcohol for 23 days then bring them back, one at a time, in small quantities for 3 days. This will allow you to determine what foods your immune system reacts to, and to what degree.
- Include a probiotic supplement and probiotic foods such as sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, kefir and fermented foods every day. You can also eat pre-biotic foods that will help nourish your probiotic live bacteria. Pre-biotic foods include garlic, leeks, onions and asparagus.
- Eat dark leafy green vegetables such as romaine lettuce, spinach, swiss chard, and kale. This nutrient-dense group of foods promotes healthy blood flow and great skin. You can also include one green smoothie or or juice a day — preferably without fruit, and definitely without extra sweeteners.
- Considerably reduce sugar and processed foods. Unhealthy gut bacteria, such as candida, thrive on sugar and junk foods. Sugary foods and drinks also create inflammation in your body, making it weak and unhealthy.
- Include healthy fats and Omega-3 fatty acids in your diet every day. These foods promote healthy blood vessels. You can find them in abundance in dark leafy greens, broccoli, raw walnuts, flaxseeds, wild salmon, free range organic eggs, and sardines.