Tips on Beating Bloating

I recently mentioned beating bloating as one of my Beauty Resolutions in this post. I promised to talk a little bit more about how I am addressing this and here I am doing just that. Now I have to put it out there that although I am a Pharmacist, I am coming at this issue from a beauty and lifestyle change perspective. You do still need to consult with your doctor, pharmacist and other health care practitioners for advice as everyone is different. I am just sharing what has worked (and is still working for me) based on my experiences. I am more than delighted to hear any suggestions you may have around this issue. Bloating is a condition that affects many people but it appears to be more common with women. It is associated with food intolerances, constipation, overeating, PMS, intestinal gas, etc. There are various symptoms but the most common are the feeling of fullness and tightness around the stomach. Sometimes, you may feel like your tummy is twice as large as its normal size but it may not be so. For me, it does not actually look that way at all but it definitely feels that way to me.

I never used to experience bloating until the end of last year and I was a little concerned about it. I started reading articles and applying some of my previous knowledge to get the right solution to it for good. For the most part, I did not want to be on medication just for bloating as that’s not my preference. Anyway, I have made some lifestyle changes that I wanted to share which have been working for me. The thing with bloating is that you do have to make consistent lifestyle changes to see good results (just like everything else in this world). You also need to identify what you think may be the cause of your bloating as that would make it easier to select lifestyle changes. I identified that my bloating was caused by some types of food, the time I was eating these meals and some GI issues. I really don’t want to get technical so let me just jump right into it…

Being mindful of the meals I eat 
First off, the above pictures have nothing to do with bloating and these meals were sooooo delicious (I am very obsessed with Thai Food). I don't really have any pictures of the actual meals that cause me to feel bloated so I  decided to use these anyway.  The biggest culprit is bread and many processed foods. If I have a bagel or croissant, I would feel bloated almost immediately (and no I am not Gluten Intolerant or Celiac). Same goes for pizza and to be honest it is a difficult call because sometimes I just want these delicious comfort foods/meals. Everyday, I am faced with making the best choices to put my health and wellbeing first and avoid these meals. Sometimes, I succeed and I feel all the better for it. Some other times, I still slip back into my old ways because why not? I am a human being prone to mistakes. However, I try to make good choices for the most part and I am improving with time. I have also been mindful of the time I eat. Generally, most processed foods make me feel bloated and when I eat them at night, it makes it worse. I won't say I have completely excluded processed foods from my diet because let's face it, they are delicious. If I have to have them, it would be before 2pm and definitely not at night as that would exacerbate my bloating. It's sad because I feel Pizza tastes so much better in the evening but I have really had to restrict Pizza nights to a blue moon now.  I also noticed that some vegetables like broccoli and cabbage could cause bloating because they give off gas when they are being broken down in the body. I just eat them in moderation (not like I am a fan of broccoli per say so it's not difficult, hehe).  Lastly, reducing salt intake makes a massive difference because excessive salt causes water retention. I find that most processed foods/meals contain a high level of salt (sodium) which may cause bloating. Sometimes, it's just the little changes and compromises that you make that help make a difference.  Overall, I have seen a massive improvement just by making healthier choices with my meals and meal times) and I feel all the better for it (and less bloated, of course).

Juicing/Cold Pressed Juices
I have to admit that I only recently started juicing and I am totally addicted. I have always scoffed/rolled my eyes at juice cleansing and anything similar. Well, I am taking my words back because I am now a total convert. I have a post planned on my juicing experience (not a juice cleanse but just regular juicing) which I would be sharing on here next week. Basically, my colleague at work (actually my manager but we call everyone colleague) loves juicing and of course, I rolled my eyes at him for sticking to it. I secretly admired his gorgeous glass bottles which housed the juices and then one day, he gave my other colleague and me some of his green juice to taste. We were absolutely shocked at how delicious and wholesome it tasted.  Let’s say the rest is history and I have been juicing consistently for 3 weeks.  Anyway, he told me his beautiful glass bottles and some of the juices were from Rawpress who specialise in the most delicious cold pressed juices. I was on the website as fast I could and here I am loving all my juices to the point of writing about them. The lovely co-founder Jack was kind enough to gift me some juices and I also purchased a few. Juicing has made such a huge improvement to my bloating episodes. I have one juice (usually green) every morning and I can’t even describe how happy I feel. I always look forward to it and it has brought a whole lot of benefits to my skin, nails, etc. I am not a salad dodger but I don’t think I could consume the amount of veg I am currently consuming if I were not juicing. Before now, I would feel quite bloated in the morning after breakfast but now, I am just ready to take on the world. It’s incredible and everyone in my team (at work) have caught on the juicing bug. I think using the right ingredients in the juice such as celery, cucumber, lemon, etc is very important as they are all known for fighting the bloat. It is also the easiest way to up your vegetable and fruit intake if you struggle with that.

Of course, exercise had to be included. I have a love-hate relationship with exercise. I love to exercise but I feel lazy getting prepared to go to the gym. The worst thing is my Gym is only 2 minutes from my house (like seriously, you could not be any lazier even if you tried).  If I could just open my eyes and be in the gym, I would be highly delighted. However, when I am in the gym, I have the best time ever and I always want to go back. These days I get my motivation from remembering the amazing time I had the previous day and I get my butt in the gym.  I got to Virgin Active Gym and I enjoy it although it is slightly expensive. However, the cost of the gym versus the improvement in my health and wellbeing makes it worth every penny. Sometimes, I feel bloated after lunch at work if I have had a dodgy lunch and it sometimes remains the same until I get home in the evening. I know it seems silly to write this but each time I go to the gym and do some cardio, my tummy feels considerably less bloated. My flatmate and I have experienced the same feeling and I am sure there are some scientific evidence behind this but I have not bothered checking. I just do some running on the treadmill or the Curv Machine (my favourite gym machine) which I absolutely love. Other times, I would cycle or use the Cross Trainer and they just help me break some sweat. In addition to Cardio, I try to add in some strength training particularly Russian Twists (so difficult for me but so good), Ab crunches and Planks. They don’t take too long but they are effective. Exercise releases feel good hormones in the body and relieves stress. We all know that stress can cause bloating as a result of Cortisol (I call it the feel bad hormone) which has also been associated with belly fat and bloating. Long and short of it, exercise is good for you and me and provides many benefits including dealing with bloating. It does not have to be anything fancy but anything that makes you break a sweat is amazing. I aim for an hour for each gym session 3-5 times a week but 30 minutes is definitely better than nothing.

Increase Water Intake
I have never really had issues drinking water as that's one of my favourite drinks. I can't go anywhere without my bottle of water. I find that sometimes drinking water nay make you feel even more bloated than before. However, it is very essential for the body especially when you feel bloated. If you feel bloated after drinking water, you could make some small changes. I find that fridge cold water may not be the best in these situations so you can switch to room temperature water. I also find that having some hot-warm water infused with lemon is really helpful but I am sure you already know that. I know many people find water boring so you could always make it a little bit more exciting. You could make some infused water (herbs, fruits, etc) and it just makes it a whole lot easier.  Drinking water in small amounts frequently can help relieve bloating as opposed to downing a large amount in one go. Our bodies are made up of mainly water so it is very essential. I usually aim for 2 litres of water everyday but I exceed it each time. I have a Brita Water Bottle (500ml) and I fill it up up to 5 times a day and it has really helped me.

Introduce Probiotics to your regime
I already talked about introducing Probiotics as one of my beauty resolutions in my previous post here. The one I tried was from OptiBac Probiotics and it's called the OptiBac Probiotics 'One Week Flat'* and I enjoyed using it. I had this little pack with me waiting for the best time to use it and I tried it at the peak of my bloating. Inside, you get 7 sachets and it is recommended for use on consecutive days for optimum results. I started on a Monday (as you do) and I had the first sachet dissolved in a glass of water with breakfast. It does not taste of anything and just felt like drinking a regular glass of water. I was not expecting any magic results at all but I surprisingly escaped the morning bloat. I felt much lighter than I usually feel after breakfast but I was still sceptical thinking it may be a placebo effect. I was wrong as my positive experience was consistent with each use and even after I had finished the course. I am really impressed with my results and I really recommend trying it out if many other steps have failed. I am sure everyone is aware that the body has some good bacteria which helps with the normal function of the body. When there is an imbalance in these good bacteria levels, things are not usually the same. Majority of these good bacteria are found in the gastro intestinal sections of our bodies and they aid in digestion. Basically, these OptiBac Probiotics 'One Week Flat'  are made up of these good bacteria that help balance the levels of good bacteria and help minimise bloating. I did not rely solely on OptiBac Probiotics 'One Week Flat' for my results but rather I incorporated it alongside my other lifestyle changes for maximum results. Also, it is recommended to check with your Doctor before starting anything new especially if you are taking other medications. It is suitable for vegetarians, gluten free, yeast free, flavourless, no artificial colours and safe for pregnancy. You can purchase OptiBac  Probiotics 'One Week Flat' from their website here ,check out their stockist here or Superdrug and the OptiBac Probiotics 'One Week Flat' retails for £8.99.  

Overall Thoughts
That's pretty much all the tips that have helped me with my bloating. I have got really good results and I feel 100% better than I used to be as a result of these lifestyle changes. Everyone is different so experiences may also be different. I am more than happy to hear what your thoughts are on bloating (if you have experienced it) and what your favourite tips are. See you in my next post...xx
*PR Sample, read my full disclaimer here.


  1. Great writing as usual, in the juicing writeup, please include substitutes(if any) for your nigerian followers. Thank you 'Liv!

    1. Yahhhh Lam Lam, I am so happy to see you here!!! *breakdance mode*. Thanks a lot and yes, I would be sharing some of my recipes but to be honest I got them all from Rawpress. All you need to add is any green veg you like and some coconut water but I would share them with you anyway..thanks for stopping by...xx

  2. I'm so happy I found your blog! I like as it incorporates both elements from Nigeria and the UK, which I find useful, as I just got back and Im struggling to find my feet! Thanks.

    1. Awwww I am so pleased to hear that you enjoy your blog. I can imagine that it would be a huge learning curve adjusting back to Naija but you would be fine. I would always try and incorporate as much Naija stuff as I can...xx


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