Ever been so uncomfortable after a meal that you feel like your stomach will explode? Ever felt so bloated that you need to change into looser pants? It's really not uncommon, but it's also not normal if it happens to you all the time.
Since food hardly comes in its natural form anymore, it's hard for your stomach to digest it. That means we react to certain foods, while others may not experience any symptoms. Nobody will have the exact same symptoms as others, so it's important to keep track of why you get bloated and when.
The digestive system really is so important. When your gut health is off, you feel off. Ever noticed brain fog, anxiety for no reason or even just stomach pains after eating certain foods? Instead of masking that with pills such as laxatives and digestive enzymes, it's time to figure out why your body is fighting against these foods.
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Bananas aren't considered a superfood, but they should be. They help your bowel system get back on track and it also restores electrolytes. A lot of people think fruit is bad for you because of the sugar, but bananas have so many benefits to them. They also help with acid reflux and upset stomachs.
Corn is one of the most processed vegetables you can eat. Corn, which is essentially the vegetable of the summer, is supposed to be super small. However, it's genetically modified and that's why it's super hard for your stomach to digest. It also contains cellulose, which is an enzyme that our bodies can't break down easily. A lot of people notice stomach pains, gas and/or bloating after eating corn and if that happens to you, it's best to stay away.
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Kimchi is a food that a lot of people haven't tried yet, but it's delicious. It consists of either cabbage, radish or onions and there is usually other ingredients to make it even more tasty. Cabbage is a fibre that isn't digested, so it helps get your bowel movements more regular. Kimchi can be spicy, which can also cause stomach problems for some people. However, for others, it can do the opposite and actually relax their stomach.
We all know that dairy is getting more and more criticism. A lot of people, like myself, are lactose intolerant and ignore the symptoms because they love cheese, etc. However, if your body doesn't produce enough lactase which is the sugar found in milk, then you're just doing your body a lot of hell for no reason. Staying away from dairy is your safest bet if you don't want to harm your gut any further.
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Best: Whole Grains
Whole grains are amazing for fibre, which is what we all need to go to the bathroom on a regular basis. Fibre can come in all sorts of foods, however whole grains such as brown rice, oats and whole-grain bread are probably the easiest way to get fibre into your diet. Of course, if you find yourself bloating or feeling uncomfortable after eating grains, you may be intolerant or sensitive to them. If you are gluten intolerant or have celiac disease, it's essential to stay away from whole grains.
Worst: Fried Foods
We all know that fried foods aren't the best for us. Foods like fried chicken, onion rings, etc., can cause the body a lot of harm. It usually overwhelms the stomach, and when the stomach is overwhelmed it can't process food as easily as it should which means your metabolism also slows down. If you experience acid reflux or heartburn after eating fried foods, it's safe to say you should stay away.
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Best: Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are a superfood for a reason. Not only do they contain omega-3 fatty acids which is essential for the brain, they also have antioxidants and minerals. Just two tablespoons of chia seeds contains 10 grams of fibre, which regulates your bowel function. A great way to incorporate chia seeds into your diet is putting them in your water, or even using them as an egg replacement.
Not a food, but it's a hidden ingredient in a lot of foods. Chocolate, coffee, soda and tea all contain caffeine which takes away the stomach acid from the lining of the stomach. If there is caffeine in something and you notice you get bloated, stomach pains or gas after, chances are you're sensitive to caffeine. Kicking coffee to the curb can be very hard, but it will be worth it to say bye to those uncomfortable stomach pains.
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Ginger is by far my favourite spice. Whenever I feel bloated, feel sick or my stomach just feels off, ginger is my go to. Ginger soothes the stomach against any pain, and can help relieve nausea, gas, motion sickness, etc. If you ever feel like your stomach is about to burst from being uncomfortably bloated, try ginger tea!
Again, not a food, however it's still very relevant. Drinking alcohol can do damage to your esophagus which causes acid reflux in a lot of people. Alcohol isn't just a danger to your mind, but it can impair a lot of enzymes in your stomach that will prevent important nutrients from absorbed. If you drink moderately, you probably won't notice much. However, beer can bloat you if you're intolerant to wheat which can be harmful to your gut as well.