Was there ever a time where you’ve grudgingly complained? –
“what’s the point with all the exercising?!” when the minute you try to slip into a tight skirt or your favourite pair of jeans, your stomach blows up like an inflated balloon.
I find that it has been a common point of disappointment with quite a few people I have helped over the years. And it can be quite de-motivating for those who put in all the hard work in the gym and still suffer from excessive bloating.
So, if you’re one of these people who suffer from this condition, maybe your diet (for the body) needs a little assistance.
Here are a few tips that may help:
1. Eat small, well-compositioned meals –
- Eat them more frequently – ideally, ‘split’ over 5 or 6 meals throughout each day.
2. Take your time –
- Try eating slowly or slower.
- Observe the speed at which you consume your food. Do you inhale it or do you take your time and try chewing it thoroughly before swallowing? Don’t rush the mush.
3. Reduce salt intake –
- The sodium in salt holds water in your body so watch your salt intake. For you women out there, ‘that time of the month’ may play a part in that bloated feeling.
- So, try reading the labels of the foods you eat so you can have a miss on the high sodium-content foods.
4. Say no to refined (very processed) foods –
- Choose complex carbohydrates (like sweet potato, brown rice, whole-grain pasta or breads).
- Highly refined products can leave you feeling quite bloated (especially white, wheat-based products).
5. An aversion to milk and milk products –
- Your bloating can be significantly influenced by lactose. From the lactose in milk and milk products.
- Try replacing all dairy items with rice milk or soy etc.
6. Limit your fizzy drink consumption –
- Limit it to non-calorie/zero sugar varieties.
7.5 Eat some yoghurt –
- Eating some yoghurt with active acidophilous culture could deflate you down to your normal size.
I hope these tips help you reduce your bloating or even reverse it.
Now, don’t stop going to the gym and exercising just because your bloating doesn’t seem to get any better no matter how hard you work-out. Keep up your training with consistency and persistence. Keep up your investment in your health and fitness.
Your health (physical and mental) is literally your wealth. It is only when it is taken away from you, that you realize the value of it so put aside some time towards this every single day.
And don’t be too worried about the bloated stomach. There are many cultures in the world that find a rounded belly more sexier and fulfilling than a flat stomach. The middle-East and Pacific Island countries love a well-rounded tummy.
Keep up your daily crunches and other tummy exercises but you don’t need to do a thousand sit-ups. No,these exercises don’t actually get rid of fat. They only tighten and strengthen the muscles (abdominal wall) on top of your stomach. Its the extent of body-fat you have that determines whether or not you can ‘see’ your abdominals. For example, you will begin to see your abs at or under 9% of body-fat, so excessive amounts of abdominal work will not reveal your abs until you work on losing fat.
On a more serious note, although being overfat is an important health risk, I believe where you carry your fat is even more important. Don’t be too concerned with how much you weigh! Be concerned with what your body-shape is: is it an ‘apple shape’ (with most of your weight around your tummy) or a ‘pear shape'(weight mostly around your hips and thighs)?
Now don’t confuse feeling ‘bloated’ to carrying excess visceral fat around the mid-section (typical area of deposit for middle-aged men). The greater the discrepancy between your waist and your hips (your waist:Hip ratio), the greater your health and life risk. These risks stem from insulin-related metabolic problems like high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, heart disease and diabetes. NOTE: as a guide, men should strive to have a waist-to-hip ratio less than or equal to 1 and women should aim for 0.8 or less.
Recognize that storing fat in the tummy area does not cause your health risk to rise – it is simply another symptom of the underlying metabolic disorder: insulin resistance. So, it is in your best interest to you and your life to do all that you can to manage the accumulation of fat in this area so that your risk is lowered to an acceptable level. The gym is a good place to start to complement a good diet and stretching program.
If all else fails, try practising holding it in. Yep, There are some products out there (some undies for you ladies) that may assist with tummy bulges. Men, you could probably try wearing a weight-training belt around your waist.
See how this goes.
All the best in your journey towards a tighter-tummy. I will leave you with one summary: manage your tummy, manage your life risks.
Until next time,