I’m a nutritionist – here’s how to get a flatter stomach in time for your summer holidays

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THE sun is shining, so for most people that means summer dresses and shorts.

If you suffer from bloating though, you might feel uncomfortable as your stomach rounds and you feel a sense of fullness.

Bloating can be uncomfortable and will leave you with a round protruding stomach

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Bloating can be uncomfortable and will leave you with a round protruding stomach

For some people it might even mean grabbing a cushion when sitting down to hide the bloat.

But one nutritionist has revealed the foods you should eat – and the ones you should avoid if you want to beat it and have a flat stomach this summer.

Nutrition expert Dr Gabrielle Fondaro said that bloating is a common stomach complaint and most people will feel a sense of fullness, pressure, or gassiness in the stomach.

She said: “Distension, a visible expansion of the abdomen, often occurs with bloating.”

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When it comes to your stomach rounding, what you eat can have a big impact.

Dr Fondaro said eating low FODMAP foods can beat your bloating.

She explained that FODMAPs (fermentable oligo-saccharides, di-saccharides, mono-saccharides and polyols) are certain types of carbohydrates – the sugars, starches, and fibre in foods.

“FODMAPs can ferment inside your gut, and draw water into your digestive tract causing bloating.

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“Not everyone is sensitive to FODMAPs, but if you experience constant bloating, it may be a good idea to limit the amount you eat.”

She said the 13 foods that can improve bloating are:

  1. Bananas 
  2. Bell peppers
  3. Blueberries
  4. Carrots
  5. Cucumbers
  6. Grapes
  7. Oats
  8. Potatoes
  9. Quinoa
  10. Rice
  11. Tomatoes
  12. Almond milk
  13. Spinach

Dr Fondaro explained why these foods can help.

“The main principle of the low FODMAP diet is to replace sugars that are high in FODMAPs (poorly digested sugars) with sugars that are low in FODMAPs (easily breakdown in the stomach).

“In this way, the fermentation of sugars in the colon is reduced which reduces digestive stress and bloat.

“The low FODMAP diet can help people identify which foods, if any, might be causing gastrointestinal issues.

“A person can then tweak their diet accordingly and hopefully reduce bloat by eliminating the food culprit.”

While these are the foods that could help ease your bloating, Dr Fondaro said there are some snacks that could make it worse.

If you are prone to the discomfort the condition brings, then you should avoid the 15 foods:

  1. Honey
  2. Milk or other dairy containing lactose
  3. Garlic
  4. Onions
  5. Cauliflower
  6. Mushrooms
  7. Artichokes
  8. Avocados
  9. Apricots and other pitted fruits
  10. Apples
  11. Wheat
  12. Cashews
  13. Pistachios
  14. Beans
  15. Dried fruits

The food guru, who is working with Barbend said the pace in which you eat could also be having an impact.

“Speed-eating and swallowing air whilst gulping down food can lead to bloating, especially if a very large meal is eaten.

“Swallowed air is usually expelled in burps before it reaches your intestines where it could cause bloating, but if you notice that you’re belching a lot after your meals and feeling bloated and gassy a few hours later, you might feel better if you slow down your eating behaviours.

“A great way to reduce bloating is to eat smaller meals, eat slowly, and drink plenty of water instead of carbonated drinks,” she added.

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