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There’s nothing worse than that feeling of having a heavy brick in your stomach. I remember my bloating was so bad I’d look like I was pregnant! Bloating is caused by an unhealthy balance of gut bacteria in your stomach from poor diet, constipation, stress, medication, environmental pollutants and more. In the digestive tract, there are trillions of healthy and unhealthy bacteria that compete, and when “bad bacteria” outweigh the good, an imbalance can lead to a bloated stomach and excessive gas.
Tips to reduce bloating include reducing stress, eating lots of water-rich fruits and vegetables and avoiding hard to digest foods like grains, dairy, gluten and animal protein, and getting enough exercise. This smoothie recipe I’ve created is a perfect example of a meal to help improve digestion and reduce bloating so you can achieve a flat tummy! They key ingredient is papaya.
The fruit contains papain, an enzyme that helps digest proteins. This is important for bloating because many people struggle with the digestion of protein which causes fermentation, gas and bloating. Papayas are high in nutrients like carotenes, Vitamin C, flavonoids pantothenic acid, magnesium, and fibre. They also possess the following health benefits:
- Anti viral
- Improves skin disorders
- Improves digestion
- Protects against macular degeneration.
Did you know the seeds of the papaya are edible and contain a unique alkaloid called carpaine that is effective at killing parasites and worms. They also assist in liver detoxification. The seeds have an unpleasant strong bitter taste, but fortunately you only need a small amount (1⁄2 tsp) every so often to reap the benefits. So chew on a few whilst making this smoothie.