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How Can We Decrease Bloating?

By February 5, 2009 - 2:06pm
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Come on ladies, you know we all have our "fat" days.

But, how can we eliminate or decrease bloating?

According to my male roommates, men don't have "fat" days (lucky them), but we do occasionally and it would be nice to fix or prevent (wishful thinking) this lovely occupational hazard.

What works for you?

Add a Comment8 Comments

Thanks for the clarification on the magnesium/calcium. Good information. And I'll doublecheck the brand information.

February 6, 2009 - 12:44pm

Are you referring to the "bloating" that occurs during PMS? There are many causes linked to bloating, but among women, PMS is what triggers this symptom. Men do suffer from bloating the same way women do if the cause has an intestinal flora relationship. In those cases changes in diet or elimination of gluten and casein for example, or treatment with probiotics and digestive enzymes may improve symptoms.

Tina, it is interesting what you said about Magnesium. I keep forgetting how great this mineral is. Magnesium helps with symptoms of PMS, bloating being one of them, because it is a co-factor required for the metabolism of estrogen. Magnesium also relieves cramping.

In addition to being a natural muscle relaxant magnesium offers other wonderful benefits for many health conditions including slowing down aging and reduction of diabetes incidence. I recommend taking a 2:1 ratio of calcium to magnesium, it is not that magnesium alters calcium, but the 2:1 ratio works more synergistically. Calcium and magnesium are like two sides of a coin. Calcium excites nerves and causes muscles to contract while magnesium relaxes both. Consulting a professional will be a good start. Although Magnesium overload causes loose stools right away, there is not risk of overdose.

I love this book: The Magnesium Factor by Mildred S. Seelig, MD, MPH. I highly recommend it if you want to learn more about magnesium supplementation.

Now, back to the bloating question, magnesium taken with vitamin B6 about 50mg daily, has shown in many studies to help PMS. Both work synergistically.

February 5, 2009 - 10:05pm

I like magnesium for "those" days and take 300 mg daily. One thing to keep in mind though is that magnesium can alter calcium metabolism and can also lead to dehydration. But in terms of feeling less fat, it works for me.

To find out more about magnesium, check out this link from the Office of Dietary Supplements. It's also a good idea to check with your doctor to make sure the supplement won't interfere with any medication.

February 5, 2009 - 4:14pm
(reply to Tina Tran)

what brand of magnesium do you take?

February 5, 2009 - 5:03pm
(reply to Kristin Davis)

Hi Kristin, It's called Ultra and is a store-brand of a well-known health food chain. If you have any more questions, give me a yell. Thanks.

February 10, 2009 - 9:57am

Some natural diuretics are: dandelion, ginger and juniper.

Primrose oil, chasteberry and gingko leaf extract also are commonly recommended for PMS symptoms, but there is little evidence for their effectiveness.

Please be sure to tell your health care providers and pharmacist of any herbs and alternative/complementary medicines you are taking, even if "just" over-the-counter (OTC). There are side effects and drug interactions that you should be aware of. Remember the philosphy when using "natural" remedies: "If it is strong enough to help you, it is also potent enough to cause harm".

There are some great alternative and complementary practices, that have been used for hundreds of years, and, unfortunately, our western medical practices do not necessarily feel comfortable recommending them. It is good to do some research before trying anything new, even if it is labeled as "natural".

February 5, 2009 - 2:48pm

I drink hot water and Lemon juice EVERY morning. Lemon juice is a natural diuretic which can decrease bloating. Other healthy natural diuretics are green tea, carrots and tomatoes. Coffee is too, though not as good for you! These will really help with the bloating because diuretics make your body release the water it's holding on to.
Foods high in salt and sugar will make you retain more water so avoid those if possbile.

I also try and drink plenty of water and take a shot of "goodbelly" every day, which has acidophilus to keep my digestive tract happy so that I won't be bloated from both my period and my digestive tract.

The contraceptive pill can also ease symptoms of premenstruation, including bloating.

February 5, 2009 - 2:24pm
(reply to rlyons)

I've not heard of "goodbelly" -- what is it?

February 5, 2009 - 5:02pm
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