Bloating is an unfortunate side effect of many life changes. Women most commonly experience bloating during their menstrual cycle, perimenopause, and menopause. Bloating can oftentimes result from diet, stress levels, and digestive issues as well. No matter the reason, a protruding midsection can cause embarrassment and self-consciousness. Read on to learn about the four home remedies that can help reduce bloating.
Change Your Diet
Diet is a major contributor to bloating. High-sodium foods can cause the body to retain water, leaving you bloated. Other foods - such as beans, broccoli, milk, and bread - can also be the culprit. Many people don't realize they have a lactose sensitivity. It may be helpful to reduce dairy products for a week to see how your body responds. If the bloating greatly decreases, you will know that your body has a harder time digesting those foods, and you may want to cut them out of your diet completely to relieve the symptoms.
Alter Your Food Intake Schedule
When you eat is almost as important as what you eat. For example, eating a big dinner an hour before bedtime is a big mistake. You aren't giving yourself enough time to properly digest the food before drifting off into a completely relaxed state, where your metabolism greatly slows down. Also, if you only eat three meals a day, this might be the reason you are bloated. Larger portions can be harder for the body to digest. Try consuming smaller meals, more often. Never allow yourself to feel hungry, as this may encourage you to overeat.
Exercise, Exercise, Exercise
Those who exercise regularly, even if it's just a 30 minute walk daily, tend to suffer less from bloating symptoms. Exercise gets the blood flowing throughout your body, including your digestive system. Not only does exercise help relieve water retention in your midsection, but it will also burn off those extra calories you may have indulged in that might also be contributing to the bloat. Yoga, walking, and swimming may also help.
Carminative herbs, such as chamomile, garlic, spearmint, and cinnamon, help to relieve bloating and discomfort because their properties aid in purging the body of gas. Foods that contain natural probiotics can also aid in digestion and reduce bloating. Probiotics put good bacteria into the stomach lining, lessening the buildup of gas and cramping. Try adding yogurt or miso soup into your diet.
Being conscious of your daily lifestyle can improve bloating symptoms. For some women, bloating during PMS and menopause is inevitable. However, don't sit on the sidelines and suffer. Get in the bloating-reduction game and fight hard with exercise, a healthy diet, and herbs. Click on the following link to read more about relieving menopause symptoms.
- Chevallier, A. (2000). Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine. London: Dorling Kindersley Adult.
- National Institutes of Health. (2015). Abdominal bloating. Retrieved January 15, 2015, from http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003123.htm
- Northrup, C. (2001). The Wisdom of Menopause. New York: Bantam Dell, pp. 230-231