While most of us don’t want to think about it, all of us have to deal with bloating and gas every once in awhile. It’s embarrassing, but it’s natural. Certain behavioral habits can lead to excessive gas, as can the types of foods we choose to eat. If you tend to gulp your food or drink while you eat, you will swallow air. The same holds true for people who regularly chew gum. Not thoroughly chewing your food can lead you to swallow air. There are a lot of “ingredients” in intestinal gas, such as hydrogen, methane, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, and oxygen. There are several reasons why flatulence occurs. One of the most common is the fermentation of bacteria and other microbes in the colon. Fungi, yeasts, and bacteria break down food that moves through the small intestine. Bacteria, in particular, feed on undigested carbohydrates, leading to fermentation. This process results in the production of gas – and when it accumulates to a certain level, that leads to flatus.
Ginger can also help with a wide range of digestive issues, helping relieve the bloating that occurs due to an accumulation of excessive gas. Studies suggest that ginger not only helps reduce flatulence, but also pain in the abdomen.
You can also combine turmeric with ginger in order to find relief from bloating. Turmeric is high in a substance known as curcumin. Researchers looked at how curcumin can affect indigestion, and found that it relieved bloating.
Dill takes care of indigestion, stomach cramps, gas, and water retention.
Fennel is used to get rid of flatulence and is also effective against water retention.
Peppermint has a lovely refreshing flavor but is also known to be soothing. Peppermint soothes the digestive system and helps to relieve cramps and gas.
Chamomile is most often used to treat anxiety and insomnia, but it can also be used to soothe the digestive system and get rid of excess gas.
Parsley helps for bloating by relieving constipation and indigestion.
Lemon balm contains citral, citronellal, linalool, geraniol, and beta-caryophyllene, each of which has spasmolytic (anti-spasm) and carminative (anti-gas) properties.
Anise spice has a reputation for calming spasms in the stomach. The relaxation activity can help avoid bloat, too, as it keeps your stomach from tightening, cramping, and overall stressing out. Enjoy it as an herbal tea, add it to your soup and pasta dishes, chew some seeds after a meal, or try some anise seed water.
Pour 6-8 oz of boiled water over 1 TBSP of loose tea.
Steep for 3-5 minutes.
Add honey or sweetener, if desired.
Information on the traditional uses and properties of herbs are provided for educational use only, and is not intended as medical advice. Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Many traditional uses and properties of herbs have not been validated by the FDA. If you have any serious health concerns, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering.