Thursday, 28 Oct 2021

Best supplements for bloating: The sweet tasting ‘medicine’ proven to reduce bloating

Bloating causes a person’s tummy to become stretched and to feel uncomfortable, and the cause is often food. Fizzy drinks can lead to excess gas in the stomach, and cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, sprouts and cauliflower, can be hard to digest. If you experience bloating on a regular basis you should see your GP. But if it occurs after eating these kinds of foods, then taking a supplement could offer you relief.

Studies have shown liquorice can help digestive issues, including bloating

Studies have shown liquorice can help digestive issues, including bloating.

A 2011 study, which can be found in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, looked at people with indigestion taking 75mg of liquorice root extract, twice a day for 30 days.

After two weeks, participants said their symptoms had significantly improved, including upper abdominal fullness, regurgitation and bloating.

Holland & Barrett explains what liquorice is: “You may think of liquorice first and foremost as a sweet, in ‘allsorts’ of shapes and sizes, but it’s also a herbal medicine that’s been used traditionally for thousands of years.

“In fact, some liquorice-flavour sweets (mainly those in America) don’t actually contain any extract from the liquorice plant at all.”

Liquorice originates from the root of a plant called glycyrrhiza glare.

The high street health store adds: “The root extract has a sweet flavour, and contains over 300 different active compounds.3 Studies show that liquorice may be effective for a number of conditions, including indigestion, hot flushes and low blood pressure.”

There are currently no guidelines for how much liquorice you should take, but the World Health Organisation and the European Commission Scientific Committee on Food recommend no more than 100mg a day of glycyrrhizic acid – a potentially toxic compound found in liquorice – a day for the average adult.

Another supplement which has proven effective for bloating is activated charcoal.

Activated charcoal supplements work by absorbing excess gas from within your gut to relieve flatulence and feelings of fullness,” a claim that was supported by the European Food Safety Authority in 2011.

Activated charcoal is made by heating charcoal to a high temperature.

This combines the charcoal with oxygen to open up the millions of tiny pores between the atoms the charcoal is made up of, increasing its absorption abilities.

It’s recommended you take the tablets after meals.

If you are taking other medication, then you should take activated charcoal tablets either two hours before or one hour afterwards.

If you have a medical condition involving your intestine, always consult your doctor first.

Some easy lifestyle and diet swaps can also help reduce gas and a bloated tummy. 

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