Most mornings you slip into the same routine: coffee, oatmeal, check email, brush teeth, dress and it’s off to work. But there’s a missing step that could be keeping you from having the flat stomach you really want. Sometimes belly bulge isn’t fat – it’s bloat. Taking certain minerals in the morning can have a positive effect on reducing the dreaded belly swell. Try one of these tomorrow.
“Sodium is a well-known body puffer because it increases water retention in the body,” says Dr. Lisa Davis, chief nutrition officer of Terra’s Kitchen. Avoid high-sodium foods like chips, soy sauce and canned soups, and add potassium. Dr. Davis says the mineral is responsible for maintaining proper fluid balance in the body. It actually counterbalances sodium levels! Try a supplement as well as high-potassium foods such as sweet potatoes, bananas, leafy greens and mushrooms.
Bloating is super common when you have PMS but Dr. Davis says taking magnesium could help bust bloat by decreasing water retention. A study of women with premenstrual swelling found that taking 200 mg of magnesium oxide daily for two cycles significantly reduced the PMS-related bloat. “Pumpkin, sunflower and sesame seeds are also a great way to add magnesium to your diet,” says Dr. Davis.
“Eating calcium-rich foods like yogurt, beans, almonds and dark leafy green vegetables or supplementing with calcium can also help with symptoms of bloat,” says Dr. Davis. Try a daily dose of 500 mg calcium carbonate. A study reported a decrease in abdominal bloating for women with PMS that took the supplement for 2 months.
"Manganese is a trace mineral that when working in tandem with calcium has been shown to significantly reduce PMS bloating,” says Dr. Davis, who suggests oats, brown rice, chickpeas and spinach as some of the best sources of manganese. “Spicing up your food with cloves, cinnamon or turmeric is another way to add manganese to your diet.”