Seniors who are struggling with bloat should know that it’s very common for people to have issues with bloating as they get older. Changes in gut health, changes in diet, changes in exercise habits, and other factors can cause increased bloating. Certain medications, muscle loss, and hormonal changes from menopause can also cause bloating. Bloating is uncomfortable and can be painful. But there are some things seniors can do to prevent or get rid of bloat like:
Make Diet Changes
Seniors can make simple changes to their diet to prevent or reduce bloating. They should focus on eating smaller, more frequent meals rather than large, heavy ones. Avoiding gas-producing foods like beans, broccoli, cabbage, onions, and carbonated beverages can help. Additionally, seniors should be mindful of artificial sweeteners like sorbitol and mannitol, which can cause bloating in some individuals.
Drink More Water
Drinking plenty of water throughout the day is essential to prevent constipation, which can contribute to bloating. Seniors should aim for at least eight glasses of water daily, but it’s important to increase this amount if the weather is hot or if they are physically active. Seniors that take diuretic medications can often develop bloat because of the water they lose due to the medication. That makes it even more important for seniors to drink water throughout the day.
Drink Herbal Teas
Herbal teas like peppermint and ginger tea are known for their digestive benefits. They can help soothe the stomach and alleviate bloating. Seniors can enjoy a cup of these teas after meals or whenever they experience discomfort.
Chewing fennel seeds after a meal is a traditional remedy for bloating. The natural compounds in fennel seeds can help relax the gastrointestinal muscles and reduce gas.
Apply a Warm Compress
Applying a warm compress or a heating pad set on low to the abdominal area can help relax the muscles, ease discomfort, and promote better digestion. Seniors can use a hot water bottle or a warm, damp towel for this purpose.
Light physical activity, such as a short walk, can aid digestion and relieve bloating. It helps to stimulate the gastrointestinal tract and prevent gas buildup. Walking, yoga, Tai Chi, and other gentle exercise can help seniors with many physical problems including bloating.
Probiotic supplements or foods like yogurt with live cultures can help balance the gut bacteria, improving digestion and reducing bloating in some cases.
Get Tested for Allergies
Seniors should be aware of potential food allergies or intolerances, such as lactose or gluten. Avoiding trigger foods can significantly reduce bloating.
Slow Down While Eating
Eating too quickly can lead to swallowing air, which can contribute to bloating. Seniors should take their time, chew their food thoroughly, and avoid rushing through meals. Eating meals with a home care provider can make meals more pleasant and get seniors to eat slower.
Avoid Tight Clothing
Wearing tight clothing, especially around the waist, can compress the abdominal area and exacerbate bloating. Loose-fitting, comfortable attire is a better choice.
Limit Salt Intake
Excessive salt can lead to water retention and bloating. Seniors should aim to reduce their salt intake, especially if they have hypertension or other heart-related conditions. Home care can help seniors make meals that have no or little salt that still tastes good.
Aloe Vera Juice
Aloe vera juice can have a soothing effect on the digestive tract. Drinking a small amount before meals may help prevent bloating.
Some herbs like chamomile and caraway seeds are known for their ability to reduce gas and bloating. Seniors can consider incorporating them into their diet, either in cooking or as teas.
Over-the-Counter Digestive Aids
For mild, occasional bloating, over-the-counter digestive aids containing simethicone can help break up gas bubbles in the stomach, providing relief.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care services in Bellaire, TX, contact the caring staff at Personal Caregiving Services at 832-564-0338. Providing Care in Houston, Bellaire, West University Place, Katy, and Sugar Land and the surrounding areas.
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