Stomach bloating: Expert recommends to increase dietary fibre slowly to avoid upset bowel

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Dietary fibre can be defined as “the parts of food that cannot be digested or absorbed in our gut”. Examples include oats, nuts, and seeds. If you’d like to reduce your chances of stomach bloating, read on.

Ludlam-Raine explained that “fibre is extremely important, as it helps to keep our digestive system and bowel in good working order”.

It does this by promoting healthy gut bacteria, as well as contributing to a healthy immune system.

Moreover, fibre helps to keep cholesterol levels in check, which in turn improves the health of the heart muscle.

If that wasn’t enough, fibre also helps to keep you regular (preventing constipation).

For a food item to be considered “high fibre”, the nutritional label will need to state it contains at least 6g of fibre per 100g.

An alternative reading may appear on a label as 3g fibre per 100kcal – and this is still considered high fibre.

“Many of us don’t eat enough fibre,” said Ludlam-Raine. “the majority of UK adults don’t reach the target of 30g of fibre per day.”

READ MORE: Stomach bloating – the activity to ease the discomfort of a bloated tummy

As the winter months come throttling towards us, it’s the ideal time to cook chillis, stews and curries.

When making these delicious meal, Ludlam-Raine recommends “adding more vegetables, beans and/or lentils”.

When it comes to snacks, she adds that “fruit with yoghurt” or “popcorn” are great options.

Being a registered and well-respected dietician, Ludlam-Raine has designed a meal plan that consists of 30g of fibre.

Evening Meal (6g fibre)
Fajitas made with 1 x wholemeal tortilla wrap with chicken, a pepper & 1/2 onion

“Eating an adequate amount of fibre as a part of a healthy balanced diet, in addition to exercising regularly and getting enough sleep, can help to improve gut health,” said Ludlam-Raine.

“Don’t rush into upping your fibre intake all at once though as this can cause stomach pains and bloating,” she warned.

“Try building your fibre intake over a period of time instead,” she added.

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