Easy Ways to Live Well: Steph McGovern discusses bloating
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Stomach bloating is a common occurrence which takes place after a rather indulgent meal, too much to drink or a food type which does not agree with you. Often the symptom of bloating will subside in its own time and is not a cause for concern. However, if the symptoms are unbearable or you are looking for a quick remedy to get rid of the unsightly bloat, there are a few proven methods.
One study, published in the journal Pain Research & Management, followed 25 teens with gastrointestinal distress and found that a one-hour instructional yoga session followed by four weeks of home practice with a video reduced their symptoms and pain.
The researchers noted that participants experienced this benefit with just 10 minutes of yoga daily over the course of the study.
The link between yoga and bloating relief may lie in the former’s ability to tackle stress.
Stress can interfere with the digestive process with yoga helping to create an aura of calmness and relaxation.
Seated forward bend pose
Sit on the floor with your legs stretched out in front of you.
Keeping your back straight, slowly lean forward and lower your torso towards your knees as far as you comfortably can.
Stay in this position for five to ten deep breaths.
Seated heart opener
Sit back on to the heels of your feet and lean back, placing your palms about eight inches behind you, with your fingertips pointing away from you.
Press your hands into the ground, lift your chest and arch your back.
Hold for five breaths, before returning to the start position.
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Cat and cow
Get on your hands and knees on the floor, keeping your back flat and ab muscles engaged.
Exhale drop your head and curve your spine up into the ‘cat pose’.
Inhale lift your head and arch your back into the ‘cow pose’.
Switch back and forth between the two poses.
Downward facing dog
Stand with your feet at hip-width apart.
Keeping your back straight, lean forward so your hands reach the ground.
Place your palms flat on the ground and hold for five to ten breaths.
Other methods to ease bloating
Ginger has also reportedly shown to help reduce signs of bloating, said the University College of Medicine in Taiwan.
The NHS advises easing any stress in your life to help ease any tummy troubles.
Anxiety and worry can “upset the delicate balance of digestion”, either contributing to constipation, diarrhoea, or bloating and pain.
“A solution is to avoid eating when you’re feeling very anxious, stressed or unhappy,” said the NHS.
In addition, there are simple guidelines to avoid tummy issues, such as:
- Taking the time to eat slowly
- Reducing the portions at meal times
- Don’t skip meals
- Avoid a big meal three hours before bedtime
- Drink plenty of water
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