|
1
Take a Look at Your Diet

Cutting back on the fats can minimize your gas.

©iStockphoto/Maksim Shmeljov

Avoiding unpleasant gas attacks just takes a little planning and some careful choices. Making educated decisions about what foods you eat, when and how you eat them and what you do after can make a huge difference in reducing stomach upset.

Here are a few suggestions to get started:

Track your diet. If you've been experiencing temporary stomach upset fairly often, try keeping a food diary for a few weeks to see if you can identify any links. Different foods bother different people. If you can identify the foods that you seem to be sensitive to, you can limit or avoid them -- along with the trouble they cause you.

Pass on pepper. Red and black pepper are frequently identified as gastrointestinal irritants, so try skipping these to see if your stomach feels better. As far as spices, limit these only if you're bothered by them. Some people can eat spicy foods without ever experiencing unpleasant side effects, and if you're one of them, depriving your taste buds isn't necessary.

Opt for less fat. If your stomach has been acting up, reach for foods that are easy to digest, such as whole grains and lean protein. Avoid foods that are fried or high in fat, which can cause or aggravate stomach upset.

Increase fiber gradually. A high-fiber diet is good for your health, but don't go too high too fast. A gradual change of diet, with a slow but continual addition of fiber, will help your system adjust gradually.

Choose veggies carefully. You may love broccoli, but if you're having a problem with gas, cut back. Too much of certain vegetables, namely broccoli, cauliflower and brussels sprouts, can aggravate stomach woes. Cabbage can also cause trouble.

Limit problematic fruits. Some people experience stomach discomfort from eating apples and melon. Pay attention to whether your stomach upset follows eating either of these.

Eat moderately. Take time to enjoy your meal and allow your food to digest properly. Stuffing your stomach can irritate it. But don't skip meals -- it allows acid to build up in your stomach and can leave you with an aching tummy.

Cook gasless beans. If you throw out the water in which you've soaked the beans overnight, then cook them in fresh water, you'll significantly decrease their gas-causing potential. Rinsing canned beans also helps reduce gas.

|