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HindustanTimes Sat,30 Aug 2014

Four quick ways to shed belly bloat

Relaxnews, AFP   August 14, 2012
First Published: 13:46 IST(14/8/2012) | Last Updated: 18:21 IST(15/8/2012)

If you need to trim belly bloat in just a few days, here is your four-step healthy plan to making it happen, fast.

On Monday, fitness blog FitSugar and Prevention magazine shared a few quick tips to reduce water retention, relieve gas, and eliminate heavy solids to have you feeling better and lighter.

What to avoid: Salt, salt-based seasonings, and highly processed foods.
Swap it out: Flavor your meals with salt-free seasoning blends or fresh or dry herbs.
The rationale: When you consume a lot of salt, you'll temporarily retain more fluid, contributing to a sluggish feeling, a puffy appearance, and extra water weight.

What to avoid: Alcohol, coffee, tea, hot cocoa, and acidic fruit juices
How to swap: Plain tap water
The rationale: Coffee and acidic drinks can irritate your gastrointestinal tract, causing swelling.

What to avoid: Black pepper, nutmeg, cloves, chili powder, hot sauces, onions, garlic, mustard, barbecue sauce, horseradish, ketchup, tomato sauce, and vinegar
Swap it out: Give dishes a flavor boost with fresh or dried herbs like dill, basil, mint, sage, tarragon, and rosemary.
The rationale: Spicy foods can stimulate the release of stomach acid, which can cause irritation.

What to avoid: Chewing gum
Swap it out: If you want something crunchy, reach for some nuts, like roasted or raw unsalted sunflower seeds. If you want a minty taste, brush your teeth instead.
The rationale: By chewing gum, you are also swallowing air, which gets trapped in your gastrointestinal tract and causes pressure and bloating.

What do avoid: Legumes, cauliflower, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, onions, peppers, and citrus fruits
Swap it out: Cook up green beans, mushrooms, and squash.
The rationale: It boils down to the fact that certain foods simply create more gas in your gastrointestinal tract.

What to avoid: High-carb foods such as bagels, pasta, pretzels, and cereals
Swap it out: Use one slice of whole grain bread for your sandwich at lunch and add extra protein, such as turkey slices. Swap your afternoon pretzels for nuts or seeds. At dinner, stick to brown rice if you need a starch.
The rationale: "Your muscles store a type of carbohydrate called glycogen," writes Prevention. "Every gram of glycogen is stored with about three grams of water." Unless you're running a marathon or triathlon soon, you won't likely need to be stockpiling carbs. Cut your carbs, and you'll temporarily train your body to access this stored fuel and burn it off, while also draining off excess stored fluids, according to Prevention.


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