Effective Natural Bloating And Constipation Hacks
Face it: Bloating and constipation hacks are necessary when discomfort strikes.
When your belly feels gassy and like a balloon, or you can’t go #2 (no matter how hard you try), you want relief, and you want it now!
Enter: natural bloating remedies and natural constipation remedies.
And while bloating and constipation often go hand-in-hand, there are also some distinct differences in the two conundrums.
What is Bloating?
Bloating is swelling or distension in the abdominal region, often characterized by a distended belly.
Bloating may be accompanied by burping (belching), gas (flatulence, farting), abdominal discomfort, and a feeling of fullness. It typically occurs directly after a meal or within 1-2 hours after. However, if you have food sensitivities, it’s not uncommon for it to extend or occur within 24-48 hours.
Bloating is most commonly caused by:
- Bacterial overgrowth or pathogenic bacteria in the gut
- Poor quality foods & food intolerances
- Low stomach acid
- Low water intake
- Poor food hygiene (such as eating too fast, eating spoiled food, eating on the go, not chewing your food thoroughly)
- High sugar, starch intake
- Low fat intake
What is Constipation?
Constipation is a condition in which there is difficulty in emptying the bowels, usually associated with hardened feces. One typically experiences a high level of constraint or restriction; and/or a pronounced lack of ease when going #2. Ideal elimination happens on a 24-hour cycle. Constipation is diagnosed in conventional medicine when a person has 3 or fewer bowel movements in a week.
Constipation is most commonly caused by:
- Stress & HPA-Axis Dysfunction
- Poor sleep and movement patterns
- Low water intake & dehydration
- Poor quality foods & food intolerances
- Low stomach acid
- Underlying gut conditions (SIBO, parasites, dysbiosis, fungal overgrowth)
- Low Vitamin D
- Low fiber intake (soluble fiber)
Regardless of what you are feeling, it is UNCOMFORTABLE and if bloating or constipation have got you down, look no further than these 20 bloating and constipation hacks and natural remedies that work FAST! In fact, many of them can work for BOTH conundrums!
Bloating & Constipation Hacks & Natural Remedies
1. Sleep 7-9 Hours
Chronic under sleeping leads to chronic constipation. Why? Your body goes hard to work when you sleep to detoxify and assist in the elimination process. If you’re not sleeping enough, then things get backed up.
2. Move…But Not Too Much
Exercise and movement gets things moving and grooving in your digestive tract—as long as you’re not overdoing it. Even as simple as walking, yoga (downward dogs) or rebounding on a mini trampoline (or simply jumping up and down) can provide relief from both bloating and constipation. Overtraining or under-recovering equally backfires and wreaks havoc on your elimination patterns, as your stress levels suppress stomach acid, and prevent the proper process of digestion.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar
Low stomach acid can trigger constipation AND bloating. Boost yours with 1-2 tbsp. of apple cider vinegar in 2-4 oz. of water with meals.
4. Drink Up
Half your bodyweight in ounces of clean, filtered water each day as a baseline to keep things flowing. Add in a little more (at least 1-2 glasses) for warmer weather and/or exercise.
5. Keep it Real (Food)
Real food (think: outside perimeter of the grocery store or a farmer’s market) does a body good. Build most meals with: A sustainable protein (wild-caught fish, grass-fed beef, pastured chicken), something green and healthy fat, add in 1-2 servings of starchy tubers and/or fresh fruits each day, and drink your water.
6. Probiotic Up
A soil-based organism supplement, coupled with 1-2 medicinal dose servings of fermented foods each day AND a prebiotic (supplement or food) are like brushing your teeth for overall gut health—essential to promote healthy gut bacteria. Find out more about probiotics here and here.
7. Temporary Low FODMAP Diet
Already eat real food? Up the ante by considering a Low FODMAP approach if bloating or constipation is a regular occurrence for you.“FODMAP” is an acronym for a collection of foods that contain certain short-chain carbohydrates and sugar alcohols that can activate gut-related symptoms due to their ability to breed and feed unhealthy gut bacteria. FODMAP stands for fermentable, oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols.
Basically, FODMAPS are sugars, starches and fibers that unhealthy gut bacteria thrive on. If you experience irritable bowel syndrome, bloating or constipation, consider eliminating high FODMAP foods from your diet. Common FODMAPS include:
- Artichoke (fructose)
- Asparagus (fructose)
- Broccoli (fructans)
- Cabbage (fructans)
- Cauliflower (polyol)
- Garlic (fructans)
- Jerusalem artichoke (fructans)
- Leeks (fructans)
- Okra (fructans)
- Onion (fructans)
- Shallots (fructans)
- Snow peas (fructans, polyols)
- Sugar snap peas (fructose)
- Raddichio (fructans)
- Tomato sauces and tomato paste (fructose, fructans)
- Apple (fructose and polyol)
- Apricot (polyol)
- Cherries (fructose and polyol)
- Mango (fructose)
- Nectarine (polyol)
- Peach (polyol)
- Pear (fructose and polyol)
- Persimmon (polyol)
- Plum (polyol)
- Watermelon (fructose and polyol)
- Legumes (lentils, beans, and peanuts)
- Soy (including edamame, tofu, tempeh, and soy milk)
- Vegetable oils and high pro-inflammatory omega-6 fats (canola, sunflower, safflower, grape seed, soybean, cottonseed and peanut oils)
- Prepared mayonnaise and salad dressings (canola oil)
- All commercial dairy products made from non- pastured, grain-fed cows, such as commercial yogurt and pasteurized milk
Nuts & Seeds
- Pistachios (fructans)
Herbs & Seasonings
- Sugar-, grain-, soy- or gluten-containing seasonings or condiments (ketchup, soy sauce, some tamari sauces, balsamic glaze, commercial mayonnaise and salad dressings)
- Chicory (fructans)
- Sugar alcohols (sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, etc.)
- Gums, carrageenan, soy lecithin
- MSG and colorings
- Agave syrup (fructose)
- Artificial sweeteners (Splenda, aspartame, etc.)
- High-fructose corn syrup (fructose)
- Honey (fructose) Refined sugars
- Fruit Juices
Now for a few more specific (immediate) bloating and constipation hacks.
Specific Bloating Hacks
1. Fire Cider
An age-old gut-boosting tradition, with apple cider vinegar, plus herbs and anti-inflammatory spices (like turmeric, ginger and garlic) to give your bloating an extra punch. I love True Tonic.
2. Ginger Tea
Herbs like Ginger are known as carminatives that help soothe the digestive tract and relieve gas. Ginger helps alleviate gas, bloating and cramps, Sip up (like Yogi) with a squeeze of fresh lemon to debloat. Small amounts of Ginger Kombucha or raw ginger (chewing on it) can also help.
3. Minced Garlic
Chop and mince cooked/steamed garlic and eat straight, or add to a spoonful of applesauce to help the medicine go down. Garlic has properties that stimulate the gastric system and help relieve gas and bloating. You can also find it in supplement form.
4. Oregano Oil
Oregano oil has natural antibacterial, anti fungal and anti-microbial properties. Try ADP OR dilute 1-2 drops of oregano essential oil in water or coconut oil and take under the tongue.
5. Hemp (CBD) Oil
A natural anti-inflammatory to sooth the inflammatory (bloating) response and ease digestion. Take a liposomal form like this one under the tongue.
6. Digestive Enzymes
Encourage complete digestion to prevent bloating caused by undigested food by taking 1-2 digestive enzymes with meals. Try Digest for every day use or Carbo-G (for starchier or gluten-contaminated meals).
An “anti-microbial” supplement, specifically designed with bloating and SIBO in mind by a holistic and conventional Gastroenterologist. Find it here.
Specific Constipation Hacks
1. Activated Charcoal
Helps flush out toxins that may be causing constipation. However, if you take activated charcoal, it’s crucial to plenty of water (approximately 12-16 cups of water per day). Activated charcoal can cause dehydration if adequate amounts of water aren’t consumed with it. Try this one.
3. IB Guard
Peppermint essential oil contains antispasmodic properties, which can relax the muscles in the digestive tract, making the bowels looser. Try IB Guard.
Prokinetics help fire special nerve receptors in your gut that help you go #2. In the case of chronic constipation, sometimes these receptors are not working like they should. (Hello backup!). Try:
5. Vitamin/Electrolyte Blend
Vitamin C, Magnesium, Vitamin K, Calcium all in one for power pact constipation relief, like this supplement.
Bloating and constipation be gone!