The following post was written by the registered dietitians of C & J Nutrition, Stephanie Clarke and Willow Jarosh. We turned to them for their expert advice to answer a FitSugar reader's question.
I am dealing with some serious bloating issues and it isn't pretty — especially since it's Summer and I plan to hang out in a bikini as much as possible. Can you tell me what foods cause bloating that I should be avoiding? Also, are there any foods out there that alleviate bloating? Thanks!
— Puffy Tummy
When dealing with bloating you need to approach the problems from a couple of different angles to find the source of the problems and figure out what is causing the bloating. A common cause we see with our clients is eating too much, too fast. The remedy for this is to slow down and be more conscious both before and during eating. Don't let yourself get famished between meals — because then you'll want to eat a ton of the first thing you see, quickly. Have a snack in between meals so that you're hungry but still able to make wise portion decisions and slow down at meals. In other words, try eating smaller amounts more often.
If your bloating is PMS-related, skip sodas/carbonated water/etc., as the same bubbles that give carbonated drinks their fizz can enter our digestive tract and cause bloating. Also go easy on salty foods/snacks — too much salt causes our bodies to hold onto water, leading to that puffy feeling of fluid retention. Finally, don't skimp on protein and your meals and snacks. Protein can actually help pull excess water out of your body (especially handy during water-retention prone PMS time).