A Recipe to Reduce Your Bloat
Do you go from zero to 6-months pregnant after meals? This is so common, but it doesn’t have to be this way! Jen, a registered dietitian nutritionist, is on a personal mission to de-bloat bellie’s and help her clients have the best 💩 ever so they can feel amazing both in and out of their clothes. She believes that diet and lifestyle choices along with education on how to use CBD to help your gut health is the key to your success!
“I have seen many wonderful improvements in my clients symptoms by combining CBD with diet and lifestyle to target gut health.”
What is causing your bloat?
“The term bloat is basically a catchall word and could mean many different things! It could mean you are retaining fluids, or gas, air or food is trapped inside somewhere along your GI tract, or a combination of both. Bloat is basically your guts reaction to anything off balance, so many things could cause bloating. Constipation, or being unable to have a bowel movement, and food sensitivities are by far the most common reasons your body gets bloated. Bloating is usually a sign of what we call “maldigestion” meaning your body is having a hard time digesting your food. But the cause can be from dehydration, stress, food sensitivities, infection, or hormonal health. To permanently beat the bloat we need to find out the root cause.”
Jen’s 5 ways to reduce your bloat
Here are some general tips to try.
- Gentle movement — If you are feeling bloated, heavy, or your tummy just doesn’t feel great, then this is the perfect time to go for a walk or get in some gentle movement. Sitting around or a general lack of movement can slow down your digestion, but strenuous exercise could make it worse! Exercise helps move food through the digestive tract, which can help when you are constipated. Exercise can also help lower stress, which can be a huge but oftentimes overlooked cause for digestive issues. Getting in your steps every day and intentionally moving your body in a way you enjoy is a great way to proactively keep bloat at bay.
- Drink more water with minerals — Your body uses digestive juices that have enzymes to break down food in order to be absorbed and used by the body. It requires energy, water and minerals to make these enzymes. If you do not drink enough water, your body cannot make enough digestive juices and this affects your body’s ability to even digest food in the first place. And, if the water you are drinking isn’t loaded with electrolytes (like potassium, sodium, magnesium) then that further hinders your body’s ability to digest! This often leads to constipation, gas, and lack of energy. Remember that word “maldigestion”? Yup, being chronically dehydrated and lacking electrolytes is a sure way to feel bloated.
- Assess your fiber — Having too much OR too little fiber can affect your gut. Plant-based diets are traditionally high in fiber, and the more fiber you have in your diet, the harder it is to digest! If your body isn’t used to eating these high fiber foods it can result in chronic bloating, even though you think you are “eating healthy”. And if you are eating high fiber and not drinking enough water, then it can make it worse! If this sounds like you, go ahead and track for a few days how much fiber your body is eating on average. Then try eating lower fiber foods for a week or two and then slowly increase your fiber intake to a goal of at least 25g per day. Now, if you look at your meals and it looks like you aren’t getting ANY fiber, then its time to add it up! But do it slowly, because when you increase fiber too rapidly it can make you more constipated which will make your bloat worse!
- Try a low FODMAP diet or assess food sensitivities — In certain cases, those with chronic stubborn bloating and other digestive issues may get a diagnosis of IBS or irritable bowel syndrome. This isn’t necessarily a diagnosis, but rather a term for collection of digestive symptoms. A low FODMAP diet is a diet that is low in certain types of carbohydrates that ferment in the gut and can cause digestive symptoms like bloating, gas, diarrhea or stomach aches. Trialing a low FODMAP diet is a great way to find temporary relief, however a low FODMAP diet is not a long term solution, so if you find that it works for you, definitely reach out to a health professional to help you find long-term relief. Most people have food sensitivities, but not all sensitivities are the same. If you feel a certain way every time you eat a specific food, try removing it from your diet and see how you respond. Some of the most common sensitivities I see are dairy, gluten, soy, grains, and eggs.
- Try CBD — Studies show that CBD may affect gut motility, or how fast/slow food moves through the digestive tract, and may also decrease inflammation. Because bloating can be caused by food moving too slowly through the digestive tract, CBD may help by stimulating your digestive tract to move food along properly. The best way to take it would be orally (capsule or tincture in food). See my recipe below for a yummy recipe for a CBD mocktail!
Cucumber Coconut Ginger Fauxjito
This recipe is a low FODMAP, super hydrating beverage that is PERFECT for hot weather and laying around in your swimsuit! This drink is loaded with electrolytes to make it super hydrating, and ginger and mint which are both great for gut health. Feel free to top off with some sparkling water, however I like to serve it over ice with a lime wedge! Cheers!
Blend together all ingredients except ice. Once fully blended, pour over ice and garnish with lime and mint!