Reducing bloat in menopause is an issue that is we often talk about in hushed tones among the women in my circle of friends. I hope this article may help a few of them.
You’ve just purchased the MOST GORGEOUS pair of jeans, a beautiful new shirt and belt to wear out for the monthly lunch with the girls.
You wake up on the day to that all too familiar sensation of gurgling and pain in the stomach.
With a sigh, you revert to your uniform of stretchy leggings, long top and boots.
Sound familiar? Unfortunately, this scenario is all too common for a large number of women.
Most women will experience bloating. If you are lucky it isn’t frequent or severe but for some, it has a very negative impact on their lives.
When food doesn’t pass through the intestines easily, particles can become trapped and consequently cause bacteria which gives off gas.
Not very pleasant I know.
In menopause, bloat is generally caused by one of two things either water retention thanks to lowering estrogen levels or changes to the gastrointestinal tract.
Let's look at ways we can reduce the probability of bloat and get you into those gorgeous jeans girl!
1. Drink more water.
This is so important for many aspects of our health.
Water helps flush that food by making sure that no particles are left behind so it will also help to get those bowels moving.
Have a glass now. Go on I’ll wait until you come back.
2. Eat more natural fibre.
The morning is the best time to get a head start on those pesky intestines.
One of the best natural fibres is psyllium husk, the main ingredient in Metamucil. Keep some in the cupboard and sprinkle it on your cereal or smoothie.
While you're at it throw some raspberries on that muesli and add an extra kick or smash some avocado on that high fibre muffin.
3. Limit foods containing indigestible sugars.
We know these foods as FODMAP’s or fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols.
They include but are not limited to:
Sugar alcohols are also included in this list because large amounts of these sugar alternatives have been known to cause digestive issues. Avoid sugar-free chewing gum and xylitol, sorbitol and mannitol.
I can see that some of these foods might raise an eyebrow or two but we're not talking about cutting them out altogether. Just assess if any of these foods could be causing an issue.
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4. Avoid Carbonated Drinks
These contain carbon dioxide which can cause bloating in the stomach.
5. Eat Probiotic Foods Or Take A Supplement
Probiotics are good bacteria which will help kill off the bad bacteria in your gut. Fermented foods are high in probiotics. See my post "A List Of The Best Foods For A Healthy Gut" for a more in-depth list of fermented and other foods which benefit your gut.
I know first hand what it is like to suffer from bloating and the pain that trapped gas can cause. For me, it has been a combination of ALL of these tips which have provided the best solution.
There are still days the stretchy pants come out but they are far rarer.
Do you have some sure-fire tips that work for helping with reducing bloat? Add them in the comments.