Bloating is caused by two things: 1) excess water retention, which is often caused by too much sodium in your diet; and 2) gas produced when your intestinal bacteria breaks down certain fibers in high-fiber foods. The good news is that most of the best foods to beat the bloat will combat both types of bloating, helping to restore your body to normal. Here are the foods to try:
Not only is fennel a natural diuretic (which helps to eliminate water), but it can decrease intestinal gas. It contains special compounds (called estragole, fenchone, and anethole) that will relax the muscles in your intestines, decrease inflammation, and cause any gas trapped in your intestinal tract to dissipate. This is most effective for gas-related bloating, but the diuretic properties will help to eliminate water retention-caused bloating as well.
Lemon juice contains acid very similar to your stomach’s gastric acid, which means that the juice can help to encourage better digestion. It can also relieve indigestion and help to decrease bloating. Having a warm cup of hot lemon water every morning will give your digestive system the jump-start it needs to run well all day long and can combat overnight bloating.
Yoghurt contains a lot of protein, minerals, and vitamins, but in the case of bloating, it’s the probiotics that you want most. Probiotics are essentially live bacteria cultures that live in certain fermented foods, with yoghurt being the most common. The probiotics in the yoghurt will help to calm any inflammation or excessive gas production in your digestive tract and decrease bloating visibly.
Avocadoes contain a lot of potassium, which means they’ll help to balance out your body’s sodium levels and avoid excess water retention. They’re a great alternative to bananas if you’re on a low-carb diet, and you’ll find they’re also rich in dietary fiber that will help to balance out your gut bacteria.
Papayas contain papain, an enzyme that will help to decrease inflammation in your body and aids in the breakdown of the food you eat. It’s also rich in Vitamin A, another anti-inflammatory nutrient that can help to decrease bloating. Papaya will help to soothe your digestive tract and reduce any stomach upset, as well as prevent the high gas production caused by the breakdown of fiber in your intestines. Definitely a good food to try if you’re worried about bloating!
Bananas contain a lot of potassium, the mineral responsible for eliminating excess water from your body. If your bloating is caused by water retention, it’s very likely due to high sodium intake. Potassium will help to balance out your body’s sodium content and thereby encourage the elimination of water.
Ginger is one of the best foods to beat the bloat thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties. Ginger contain zingibain, a digestive enzyme that can help your body break down protein and relaxes your intestinal tract. Not only will it combat inflammation, but it can help food to pass through your digestive tract more easily. This will, in turn, reduce bloating and help to decrease gas production as food is broken down in your digestive system
Cucumbers have a very high water content, which means they’ll help to keep you hydrated. Hydration is the key to preventing water retention—your body retains more water when it starts to feel dehydrated. Plus, the silicon and sulfur in the cucumbers will act as a diuretic and flush excess fluid from your body. They’re also rich in fiber but won’t cause the negative gas-producing effects of cruciferous veggies.