There are few things I hate more than belly bloat! No matter how well I think I’m doing on plan, catching a glimpse of a puffy pouch in the mirror always makes me second guess my progress. The truth is, the cause of most belly bloat is easy to diagnose and prevent. For me it can be something as simple as eating too many vegetables, salt or increasing my protein intake too much too quickly.
To help get you on your way to a fabulously flat tummy, here are just a few of my favorite ways to beat the bloat.
Hydration is key – I know that increasing your water intake to decrease bloat sounds strange, but it really does work! Increasing your water intake helps to flush out excess salt in your body. It also ensures that you don’t dehydrate, which causes your body to retain water. Aim for a minimum of eight glasses a day. If you can get closer to a gallon a day – even better.
Do a gut check – If you didn’t know it, there are good and bad bacteria in your body. The bad can increase your chances of getting sick or lead to constipation. The good balance everything out and keep your body healthy and regular. To make sure I’m giving my body a helping hand in keeping me healthy, I always incorporate probiotics. I find a probiotic supplement to be easiest, but you can always get your fill of these fabulous fighters by eating yogurt too. Whichever way you choose, keeping your gut in check and on schedule, so to speak, will keep you from getting that bloated, food-baby feeling.
Eat little and often – Every time I indulge in an excessively large meal, I almost instantly regret it. Even if what you’re eating is a healthy choice, eating too much of it can cause your belly to bloat. It takes about 20 minutes for our bodies to digest our food, and that’s when we’re shoveling it down in small quantities. Eating too much in a short time causes the food to just linger there, keeping you feeling stuffed and looking bloated. Instead, I recommend eating 5-6 small meals a day spaced out about every 3-4 hours. This way you’re not giving your body – or your belly – more than it can handle.
Walk it out – Any time I feel that unflattering bloat coming on, I immediately hit the pavement. While a hardcore HIIT workout can sometimes make belly bloat temporarily worse, a moderately paced walk can slim it down. Walking not only helps food digest faster it also eases constipation. When I am really bloated I aim for at least one short walk to make sure the inside of my body is moving as well as the outside is.
L-glutamine is your friend – This has truly been a game changer for me. When everything else failed, L-glutamine worked like magic. If you think L-glutamine is just for repairing muscles, think again! Much like probiotics, L-glutamine helps heal your gut, rebalance your internal bacteria and improve your intestinal function. I recommend initially working up to 30g grams a day, 10g the first day, 20g the second day, 30g grams the third day, before breakfast, lunch and dinner on an empty stomach. Sit at 30g for 4 days, then taper down to 5-10 grams a day. L-glutamine is a serious game changer and has so many advantages if you are performing the workouts in Sloane’s Squad.
Fight back with digestive enzymes – Maybe dairy is not your friend, gluten kills your gut or beans always bring on the bloat. No matter what your digestive issue is, there is almost always a digestive enzyme to battle it. Lactase enzymes are life savors for the lactose intolerant, and alpha-galactosidase can rid your body of gas and bloat when you overdue it on the veggies. Pick your poison and take it about 10-15 before your meal. It’s your absolute best bet for walking away from the table with a flatter tummy.
So don’t disguise your bloated belly this summer, eliminate it. By incorporating these tips and tricks into your daily eating routine, you’ll be looking and feeling amazing in no time! Want more tips to keep you looking and feeling your best? Click here.