Beat Belly Bloat Before You Hit the Beach
Actress and mother of three Melissa Joan Hart lost 40 pounds on Nutrisystem. --Photo credit: Nutrisystem.
(NewsUSA) - Sponsored News - Whether you're heading on a spring break vacation or gearing up for a summer of sunshine, getting back into a swimsuit after a long winter is becoming a reality. What’s more frustrating is that stubborn belly bloat that leaves you feeling uncomfortable. The good news is there are simple tips to help you combat bloating and leave you feeling better than ever.
Eat slowly. You've heard this advice for a bunch of different reasons -- such as to help you feel fuller faster or be more mindful of your meal. But as it turns out, taking your time at the table can help with bloating as well. When you scarf down a meal or drink something quickly, you're likely to swallow too much air. You might get the hiccups, or the gas may build up in your stomach and intestines and lead to bloating. Take your time and chew well while eating.
Cut back on sodium. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommends that the general healthy adult population limit sodium intake to 2,300 milligrams a day. However, reports indicate that the average American eats about 3,300 mg of sodium a day -- which means chances are good that you are consuming more sodium than you should. And, given that excess salt intake can be to blame for water retention, your salt habit could be causing midsection puffiness. Try cutting back on your salt intake or consider a program like Nutrisystem, which falls within the USDA’s sodium recommendation and can be customized to contain even less sodium.
Ease in more fiber. Fiber helps keep things moving through the intestines, which aids digestion and helps prevent constipation. But many high-fiber foods -- like beans, brussels sprouts and broccoli -- are also pretty potent gas producers. Upping your fiber intake too quickly can cause bloating, so start slowly and work your way to your daily fiber goal over the course of a few weeks.
Get moving. Ideally you want to work in some exercise on most days, but even taking a short walk after eating can help. The most important thing to remember is to just get moving. Melissa Joan Hart, who lost 40 pounds on Nutrisystem, gives this advice about getting in a good workout: “I’m very much driven by working out with peers or working out with my husband, Mark. If I’ve signed up for a class or I promised someone I’d be there, it just helps motivate me.”
Pump up the probiotics. Put simply, probiotics are good bacteria in your body that help you fully digest your food. What’s more, probiotics can help reduce the belly bloat you feel when you don’t have enough of the right kind of bacteria in your gut. Pile on the probiotics by chowing down on fermented dairy foods like yogurt, kefir products and aged cheeses, or opt for non-dairy foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, tempeh and soy beverages.