10 Foods That Flatten Your Belly And Beat Holiday Bloat

Rucuss staffNovember 29, 2015

It’s no secret that if you don’t watch what you eat over the Holidays, you’ll gain weight.

All of the second and third helpings, cake and cookies will definitely stretch your waist line. Think trapped air, water retention, and bloating. But never fear Prevention.com has compiled a list of 10 foods and drinks that will flatten your belly fast.

Check out the list of foods and drinks below.

1. Peppermint

To preempt holiday party bloat, sip on some peppermint tea or pop a peppermint oil pill like Heather’s Tummy Tamers Peppermint Oil Capsules about an hour before going out, suggests Tamara Duker Freuman, RD, a New York–based nutritionist who specializes in digestive disorders. (Discover how balancing your gut flora can help you lose weight and solve chronic health issues with The Good Gut Diet.) “Peppermint is an anti-spasmodic. It calms down the entire digestive tract and allows gas to pass,” she says. Sipping tea postparty can also banish belchy gas.

2. Instant oatmeal

Holiday travel can throw off your eating and sleeping, and wreck your regularity. This can lead to constipation, bloating, and abdominal pain. “Pack a couple of packets of plain instant oatmeal instead of grabbing a pastry in the morning,” suggests Freuman. “Oatmeal is a terrific source of soluble fiber to keep bowels regular.”

3. Parsley

Water retention can make you feel like you’ve suddenly morphed into Old Saint Nick after Christmas Eve cookie consumption. When that happens, don’t pass over the parsley garnish. The herb is a natural diuretic that helps flush excess fluid out of the body, as well as provides bone-building vitamin K and immune-boosting vitamin C. (Try one of these 21 healing herbs that can help you this holiday season.) Chop it up into salads or add it to your green smoothie for a belly-bloat fix.

4. Fennel

An age-old remedy for gas and bloating, there’s a reason Indian restaurants keep a bowl of colorful, coated fennel seeds by the door. Not only is the licorice-tasting spice a digestive stimulant that can speed up food transit time, fennel can also boost bile production in the gut to help break down foods. Keep some seeds in a baggy in your purse to pop postmeal, or sip fennel tea.

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5. Banana

Holiday breads, casseroles, and stuffing can send your sodium levels soaring, causing water retention and bloating. That’s where bananas come in. The potassium in bananas helps rid your body of belly-bloating sodium and excess water. So the morning after a salt binge, eat a banana with peanut butter at breakfast, or add one to your smoothie.

6. Yogurt

When the bacterial balance in your gut is off, it can cause gas and bloating. Probiotics to the rescue! These beneficial bacteria found in yogurt can rebalance the gut and improve digestive health. “Look for a brand with live and active cultures, and avoid flavored varieties filled with sugar and sugar substitutes,” says Freuman, who loves Green Valley Organics, which happens to be lactose free as well.

7. Water

Seems counterintuitive to drink more H20 when you’re retaining water, but hydrating can actually help you excrete excess water. (Make your water delicious with one of these sassy water recipes.) “When there’s not enough fluid in the body, sodium causes retention so that you hold on to the fluid you have,” warns Freuman. Just skip the straw, which can cause you to swallow extra air.

8. Ginger

If you start to puff out at a holiday bash and don’t have access to fresh ginger, chew on a strip of crystalized ginger, suggests Freuman. Ginger is an anti-spasmodic that aids digestion and relaxes the digestive tract muscles. Ginger tea works too: Simply steep thin slices of fresh ginger root in hot water.

9. Breakfast

The morning after a holiday binge can feel like a food hangover. Skipping breakfast may seem like a smart idea, but eating can actually get things moving. “Eating breakfast wakes up your digestive tract and promotes peristalsis—muscle contractions that move food along your digestive tract,” says Freuman. “And because most people poop in the morning when cortisol levels are higher, that’s your best chance to get it out of your body.” Freuman suggests an omelet with easy-to-digest spinach and tomato paired with whole grain toast.

10. Coconut water

Holiday football-watching binges can lead to high-sodium benders. Blame all those nachos and pretzels. Potassium-rich coconut water can help counteract all that salt to accelerate the de-bloating process, says Freuman. Plus, the fact that it’s a beverage works a double whammy on water retention.

Photos via MSN.com

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