Beat Bloat In 3 Simple Steps

August 28, 2015
Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS

Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS

Award-winning nutritionist and New York Times bestselling author.

Uncover The Hidden Causes Of A Persistent Pooch

Belly bloat. You’re doing everything right but you still can’t zip up your skinny jeans.

If you can relate to the following, I may have some ridiculously easy solutions for YOU.

But first, tell me. Do you feel full after just a few bites of food? Have difficulty swallowing or feel like there’s always a lump in your throat? Do you experience chronic nasal congestion, sometimes with post-nasal drip? And what about a chronic, dry cough and hoarseness?

If  any of these sound like you, then you may be a victim of the hiatal hernia syndrome. This means that your tummy is always “up” and perhaps the diaphragm muscle is torn or weakened so that the stomach moves upward through the diaphragm resulting in this problematic condition.

Hiatus actually refers to a hole in the diaphragm–your body’s breathing muscle. Normally, the esophagus passes through this muscle to become your stomach.

When the stomach is raised, it results in multi-faceted symptoms like bloating, belching, gas, hiccups, nausea and intermittent diarrhea or even constipation. A dry, tickling cough and allergies can be additional problems that are linked to this great “masquerader.”

In nearly 90% of people with hiatal hernias, GERD is a secondary symptom. Most people don’t realize that GERD is highly symptomatic of a hiatal hernia and NOT necessarily a separate condition in and of itself. GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) results when the body’s stomach acid refluxes or flows back into the esophagus creating what is commonly referred to as heartburn.

So first and foremost, if you have a hiatal hernia (or resulting GERD), you may need physical therapy or chiropractic manipulations. You can also try this self-help technique:

Drink two glasses of water on an empty stomach which will provide an anchor in the tummy.  Then jump up and down 10 times on your heals to induce a jarring affect which will stretch the tummy back down into its rightful place. 

Once you have dealt with a hiatal hernia, then you can begin to address other root causes of bloating and belly “pooch.”

Stop The Cycle

Step One: Eliminate Carb Culprits

A key reason for gas build-up in the tummy is inadequate digestion of certain classes of carbohydrates and sugars that are malabsorbed in a growing number of people. The gas is caused from fermentation in the digestive tract. The carbohydrates just stagnate in the gut where they are consumed by bacteria which then creates a ton of gas, and you bloat up like a balloon!

Probably the most common one that will give you the most relief quickly is lactose. It’s the main sugar found in dairy products whether they are organic or not. As we get older, many of us lack the enzyme lactase which helps to break down the lactose.

Removing lactose from your life for at least six weeks may be all it takes to deflate your pooch. I even suggest using ghee or clarified butter instead of regular butter if you’re especially lactose sensitive.

The next group to consider are the carbohydrates that fall under the FODMAPs classification. FODMAPS stands for fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polysaccharides.  Here are the most common examples of FODMAPS-containing foods that you may want to curtail or eliminate:

Wheat, rye barley, apples, peaches, watermelon, artichokes, onion, garlic, chickpeas, beans (kidney, fava, navy, pinto), honey, corn syrup, agave nectar, tomatoes, table sugar, molasses, beer, pears, blackberries, cauliflower, sorbitol, mannitol, and xylitol

Step Two: Introduce Enzymes into Your Diet

One of the most important enzymes to assist in carbohydrate digestion is the enzyme amylase. Contrary to popular belief, the best amylase-containing enzymes I have found are NOT vegetable based. Vegetable enzymes are grown on fungi and they can often interact with systemic yeast and mold conditions exacerbating an already bloated tummy.  Instead, I recommend good old fashioned pancreatic enzymes. Taking these enzymes with meals will help to neutralize the detrimental effects of FODMAPS ingestion. Taking them between meals gives you the bonus of helping prevent cancer, cardiovascular, and cellulite issues. They also help reduce inflammatory responses and clean up all the gunk in the arteries, cysts, scars and fibrous tissue that you don’t need.

I recommend 1 to 3 caplets of Inf-Zyme Forte with meals and at least 2 to 4 between meals to help eliminate bloat and heal inflammation.

Step Three: Kick Candida to the Curb!

After your digestion is back on track, it’s time to conquer bloat-promoting Candida–that “fungus among us” that can overgrow due to excess fruit intake, juice and sugar over the summer.

Now that you’re going to be curtailing or eliminating many of these food culprits, clean up the rest of your gut by incorporating a simple Candida cleanse as your grand finale.

There are many wonderful natural supplements on the market these days that I’ve used in the past very successfully. These include oil of oregano, the product SF722, increasing probiotics and even the mineral molybdenum.

But, my personal favorite, and the most effective for my clients, has been a homeopathic called Y-C Cleanse that regardless of the instructions, I suggest taking first thing in the morning and just before bed. It helps to deflate a puffed-out tummy and is also terrific for fungal related sinusitis, skin conditions, and UTIs. I personally use this when I’m going to celebrating with a glass of organic wine at dinner.

It’s time to make your tummy happy! Many of the solutions to heal your gut are located in the digestive tract itself. Once you heal this, you can say goodbye to embarassing gas and stubborn bloat for life.

Do you relate to any of these symptoms?  Share your story in the comments below!

Remember you can save 10% off any of the products recommended in this blog with coupon code ALGFAN! SHOP NOW>>

Related Articles and Podcasts

Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS, is an award-winning New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty books including The Fat Flush Plan series and her latest book, Radical Metabolism. She’s been rewriting the rules of nutrition for more than 40 years and is internationally recognized as a pioneer in the field of diet, detox and women’s health issues. 

For a FREE daily dose of tips and strategies for maintaining healthy weight, conquering insomnia, and much more…check out my Radical Health Tips.

I’d like to meet and greet you on my Facebook groups, so won’t you check us out at the Radical Metabolism RevolutionFat Flush Nation, or my Inner Circle!


  1. Donna

    This article is a game changer for me. Will
    definitely try this.
    But how do you jump up + down on your heals???

  2. bettina

    Dear Donna:

    It sounds like you jump and land as squarely on your feet with
    more pressure on your heels. It works!!

  3. Judy

    How often do you jump up and down…before meals? and how many times?

    • Ann Louise Gittleman

      Hi Judy, first thing in the morning on an empty stomach is preferable for 5-10 minutes.

  4. Jeri Jaquith

    This is good information, but if you’ve had your hiatal hernia for a while, it may attach itself in the chest cavity and then you may need surgery. Jumping will obviously not be enough to bring your stomach back down where it should be in that case.

  5. Cheryl

    Thank you for this article! I’ve just completed a 9 week Fat Flush diet (12 lbs weight loss!), I’ve been off wheat over two years and I continue to get a stuffed feeling after only a few bites of food, also a lot of belching. Since I read this article I’ve seen my chiropractor for hiatal hernia adjustments, I’ve resumed digestive & pancreatic enzymes and I made an MD appointment to rule out anything more serious (since I’ve had this for many years). I have never considered a hernia before – so thanks again for the article! One question, should pea protein be avoided if one has candida and/or SIBO (this probably caused my hiatal hernia -(lyme treatment))? I’ll also try the Y-C homeopathic for candida.

  6. joy

    There is a breathe in and out component to the above jumping that Ann Louise has added, I can’t remember if you breathe out when your heals hit the ground? Could someone help me please.

    • Team ALG

      Yes Joy, you would breathe out when your heels hit the ground.

  7. Lacee

    Thank you for sharing this information. I have 3 questions…Does this help cure the hiatal hernia or will the tear always be in the diaphragm no matter what is done? In my situation, I have felt an impact on my breathing in that I don’t feel like I get fluid clear breaths. I have been tested and do not have anything serious wrong. From clients you have helped, does your approach improve their breathing? Is there also a way to consult or work with you on this issue?

  8. Becky

    Hi Ann, as a longtime bloatee, I’m confused about how on the one hand, it’s sometimes recommended to eat a low-FODMAP diet and take enzymes, and other times to increase fermented foods and resistant starch? Aren’t those two things diametrically opposed?

    Thanks for any enlightenment you can offer.

  9. Kseniya


    I’ve just started the Fat Flush Program and wanted to ask…since I bloat from many fruits, can I omit them while on the 2 week fat flush?? Thank you!

  10. Kathleen

    Great article!! I definitely have these symptoms and need to work on this right away. I really needed this information and thank you very much.

  11. Barbara

    I’ve had my hiatal hernia almost 36 yrs (since the birth of my son, which is where it came from. All that straining and no help holding me up in those stirrups while I was pushing! By the next night I couldn’t even lift my arms to hold my own baby!!! Gotta love that!!).

    I have every one of the issues listed in this article, chronic sinusitis, bronchitis, allergies, Gerd big time, lactose intolerance, IBS –in both directions, depending on what I eat and omgoodness the bloat!! My incurable toe nail fungus too?! (As my previous massage / nutrition therapist kept telling me. And I’m very susceptible to bladder infections. I’m 56 so I’ve learned to take many precautions or preventatives but it truly sucks to live like this)

    Add in, about a yr ago, my Chiro told me that I also have a hernia at my belly button area. (Which is why I think I’m having even more issues–it’s pushing the hiatal hernia up even higher???!)

    My newest symptom is, I am constantly aspirating my food / drink, and saliva even. Plus those horrendously deep painful hiccups with just one bite of food.

    And when it becomes irritated (that horrible cramp like pain that hits in my Solar plexus is much higher, up under the rib cage. Much more difficult to stretch out and get it to relax)

    Now more recently, (this past week) I felt a tearing or ripping, when I was stretching to reach into a cupboard, in my solar plexus region. Since then, Just lifting my arms above my head to hang something on a door hook and such causes me great pain.

    We did some researching online and I pray I haven’t ripped the hernia. All I know is almost anything I eat is causing major stomach upset in that area.
    (I stopped the Gerd Rx meds for the more natural kind, but the ones I liked best closed their website. So I’ve been winging it with just enzymes since Dec vs enzymes plus the Tibetan herbs for acidity I was taking, Its been a Real struggle to say the least. And now THIS!!!!!!)

    I think from the research we found I’m looking at a hernia repair surgery now. But I’ll definitely still want to incorporate the things in this article.

    Any input on the need for the surgery?? I’m thinking they should fix both while they’re in there?!?! I’m not a fan for surgeries. I’ve yet to have any kind of invasive surgeries. I’d hoped to keep it that way but this has become so unbearable I’d be willing to. Especially if it’s going to help so many of my other (related /connected to) issues. And from what I read and my dr said they’re doing it laparoscopically now. Thank goodness for that. But no mesh for me please. Seen too many legal commercials fOr mesh related lawsuits. No thanks. Nothing foreign in my body tyvm!!!

    Thanks for letting me vent. I look forward to any and all input!!!

    Take care all

  12. Team ALG

    Barbara, so sorry you are struggling with this issue. It sounds like a medical situation, especially if there is a rip in the hernia. Best to you.


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