Banish The Bloat - Chloe Dennison

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Banish The BloatI'M CHLOE an experienced Naturopath who is going to help you
get your gut health back on track.
So that you too can experience a flatter stomach without the dreaded bloat!
Hello and welcome, 
If your digestive system leaves you bloated, uncomfortable and in pain by the end of the day, then I’m here to tell you that something has gone a little wrong and it’s time to get to the bottom of it!
As women, bloating, wind and digestive issues are usually the last conversation we like to discuss with our friends at a dinner party.
It can be embarrassing especially if colleagues and friends are questioning if your bloated tummy is an early pregnancy bump. (Yes, this happens a lot more regularly than you would expect..)
Believe it or not, bloated tummy’s and digestive concerns are one of the most common ailments I see in clinical practice by women, so you aren't alone! 
If you’ve been trying to figure out what on earth is causing that bloating, through endless hours on the internet and you have no clue where to start, then you’ve landed in the right place. Ongoing bloating doesn't just happen for no reason, finding the cause of your bloating through functional medicine testing is going to give you the evidence that you need so you can treat it fast and effectively without the guesswork.
I’m here to be your friendly and trustworthy gut-guru, leading you to a healthy, happy, calm and flat tummy.
Reading this book is the first step towards a healthier digestive system which will make you feel confident no matter what you’re eating or wearing (hello sexy dresses and goodbye baggy pants!).
Ready to get started? Let’s go!
A bloated, distended stomach can be caused from four primary reasons. These four reasons include:
1. Low Stomach Acid Production 2. Small or Large Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth 3. Parasite Infection 4. Food Sensitivities & Leaky Gut Syndrome
I will discuss these four sneaky causes to long term bloating so that you can aim to get to the bottom of your bloating for good!
I will then layout a tummy flattening diet plan that you can start today, which will help you to effectively reduce your bloated stomach no matter what the cause is. 
Do you eat on the way to work because you have no time to sit down and enjoy your breakfast? Or maybe you get so caught up with ticking things off your to do list, you don’t end up breaking for lunch and instead sit in front of your computer whilst you work and lunch at the same time (multi-tasking pro!).
The problem with this picture is that you are greatly impeding healthy digestion by confusing your body on what it should be focusing on, and that is definitely not digesting!
When you are in a state of ‘busyness’ your body is in a state of stress. When you are stressed, your body switches on something called the sympathetic nervous system which drives circulation to your brain, arms and legs (away from your digestive system).
This results in a slowing down of digestive processes, reducing stomach acid production and pancreatic enzyme production which are essential for breaking down the food that you are eating.
Prolonged stress and other factors such as helicobacter pylori infection, zinc and vitamin B6 deficiency as well as inflammation can significantly reduce your ability to break down food and absorb all of that nourishing food your body is yearning for.
This can leave you with inadequate stomach acid production which is what kick starts your digestion to begin with.
Without adequate stomach acid, your small intestine will end up with undigested protein molecules which will putrefy and ferment causing a very bloated and unhappy tummy!
Not only that, but if the pH of your stomach is too high (more alkaline than acidic) it will also impair carbohydrate digestion. This is because you require high acidity to kickstart pancreatic enzyme release in the small intestine to break down carbohydrates.
This can create an even bigger problem called small intestinal bacterial overgrowth which I will discuss on the next page.
How Did I End Up With Low Stomach Acid?
Constipation Bloating within 1-3 hours after eating Burping and belching during or after eating A feeling of food sitting in your stomach (slow digestion) Eating red meat causes nausea Wind that smells like rotten eggs (this is due to protein putrefaction)  Rosacea Dry, brittle peeling nails (reduced ability absorb minerals) Undigested food in your bowel motion
Common Symptoms of Low Stomach Acid
To improve your digestion and increase healthy stomach acid production, follow these steps.
1. Sit in a calm, peaceful environment for lunch (away from your computer desk) for 15 - 30 minutes. This will allow your body to switch to the parasympathetic nervous system which engages resting and digesting.
2. Chew your food properly and thoroughly (avoid big gulps and swallowing your food too prematurely). Aim to chew each mouthful 5-10 times for softer foods and up to 30 times for meat and vegetables before swallowing.
3. *Take a hydrochloric acid supplement (HCL) with pepsin to kickstart your stomach’s own production of acid, 10 minutes before your main meals. Often long term use of HCL isn’t required, and usually a short course anywhere from 1-3 months is enough to initiate healthy stomach acid production.
4. Take herbal bitters in water 20 minutes prior to eating such as gentian, Angelica root, wormwood, Chen pi, dandelion root, globe artichoke, barberry and golden seal.
5. Address any digestive infections or nutrient deficiencies.
*Note: Hydrochloric acid supplements should not be taken when there has been a history of peptic ulcers, gastritis, or reflux. 
How To Kickstart Stomach Acid Production Naturally
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) occurs when there are higher numbers of bacteria from the colon found in the small intestine, such as streptococcus. Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth has been shown to affect 11% of the population globally.
High numbers of bacteria should not be present in the small intestine which can lead to a number of uncomfortable symptoms, not just bloating. 
Alternating constipation or diarrhoea or Irritable Bowel Syndrome Upper digestive bloating Abdominal pain Food intolerances particularly to fructose, lactose, casein and gluten Frequent bowel motions (over three times per day)
Common Symptoms of SIBO
Research led by Dr Pimentel in Los Angeles has shown that food poisoning and gastroenteritis are the two main triggers to small intestinal bacterial or fungal overgrowth.
Whether that’s from a trip to Bali or India which left you sick for 24 hours or a week, or a viral gastro bug that was passed through your office at work, it can leave your digestive system in a much unhealthier state.
This is because food poisoning exposes you to a pathogenic bacteria, which creates absolute havoc on the way through. It initiates significant amounts of inflammation and damage to the delicate lining of your small intestine whilst throwing your immune system into disarray.
This immune dysregulation can initiate autoantibodies which alters the natural sweeping mechanism that clears the small intestine of bacteria and food molecules (also known as the migrating motor complex).
Liken it to a dirty plate that sits in your sink for a few days without a wash, it will eventually grow mould.
The same happens in your small intestine. Without the automated cleansing mechanism that has now been paralysed, your small intestine will begin to collect or ‘grow’ bacteria or yeast that certainly shouldn’t be there.
This bacterial or yeast overgrowth is having a little party in your small intestine, feeding on the food that is coming in.
This leads to fermentation and production of gas which creates that uncomfortable bloated stomach by the end of the day. 
How Did I End Up With SIBO?
How Do I Know If I Have Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth?
Bacteria in the small intestine will produce two types of gases as a result of the fermentation of food in your small intestine, these are
hydrogen or methane gases.

I Need Help Interpreting My Test If you are wondering which test would be most suitable for you and you'd like a referral, then please get in touch where I can:
 1. Discuss the most suitable test for you based on your symptoms  2. Interpret your test results  3. Provide you with a tailored effective treatment plan to address your small intestinal bacterial overgrowth so that you can have a flat tummy in no time.
To make a 1:1 face to face Naturopathic appointment, please click here.
A Comprehensive Digestive Stool Analysis may also be recommended to determine if there is overgrowth of bacteria or yeast. The majority of bacteria or yeast is present in the large intestine which can migrate
up to the small intestine leading to SIBO.
A comprehensive stool analysis can determine whether it's bacterial, yeast (e.g. candida) or both. This is important because each of these
infections will require different herbal treatment to effectively reduce your bloating and get rid of it for good!
How to Determine if it's Yeast or Bacteria Overgrowth
Parasites not only cause inflammation and significant digestive symptoms, but they also leach a number of essential minerals from you.
Along with bloating and a sore, uncomfortable stomach, one of the biggest symptoms when it comes to parasite infections is fatigue.
This is because these two parasites absolutely love iron and iron is an essential requirement for healthy energy levels, especially in women.
If you are struggling to get through your work day without wanting to take a nap, even after a good 7.5-9 hours sleep per night, then a parasite infection could be a cause to your bloated stomach and fatigue.
Nausea Loose bowel motions
How Did I End Up With A Parasite? Parasite infections are often passed through faecal oral route (disturbing I know!).
Sharing toilet facilities at work, in public or with children that are infected (and who may not be washing their hands properly) can result in cross contamination.
It could mean simply touching a tap after you’ve washed your hands or opening the toilet door, followed by eating with your hands and hey presto! You have yourself a friend that you could do without.
Another big one can be untreated tank water. If you are drinking straight from a rain tank at home/work, or overseas, it could have been contaminated with faeces from squirrels or a rodent. Highly unsanitary I know. 
How Do I Know If I Have A Parasite?
To accurately diagnosis a parasite infection, a quick stool analysis is involved. Stool tests aren’t always the funnest of experiences (don’t worry it can be our little secret) but it is the most accurate way to get a diagnosis.
When it comes to parasite stool tests, they can vary in accuracy. The appropriate stool test is a Faecal Mulitplex PCR, which simply means it tests for the DNA fragments of the parasite, involving a much higher sensitivity for detection.
If you would like a referral for a Faecal Multiplex PCR test, please arrange a 1:1 Naturopathic appointment here.
Painful stomach with excessive gas Skin rashes such as hives
Do you ever notice that when you eat a particular food, you notice a worsening of your bloating? Perhaps you also get a sharp stabbing pain, or urgency to run to the toilet?
If so, you may be reacting to something you are eating in your diet on a day to day basis without realising it (watch out, it might be the one food that you LOVE…).
How Did I End Up With A Food Sensitivity?
A food sensitivity involves an immune reaction to a food protein that causes inflammation in the digestive system. This comes about from something called ‘leaky gut syndrome’.
There are many things that can cause the protective wall of your digestive system to break down and initiate a food reaction. 
Regular antibiotic use Regular alcohol consumption (one too many wines during the work week..) Small intestinal bacterial or fungal growth Parasite infection Pain medication particularly NSAIDs (non steroidal anti- inflammatories) like aspirin Prolonged stress
This may include:
Imagine the lining of your digestive system is like the walls of your house. It’s goal is to safeguard you from the cold, insects and unwanted visitors. The exact same thing happens in your gut.
The walls of your digestive system safeguards the rest of your body from toxins, bacteria and undigested food molecules from entering the blood stream.
Now if you broke a window, or a wall fell down in your house it would allow all sorts of insects, and unwanted visitors to enter. The same happens when the wall of your digestive system breaks down and becomes ‘leaky’ allowing unwanted visitors to cross over such as food proteins.
When this happens, your immune system essentially rounds up the army to attack this unwanted visitor launching an immune reaction. This creates inflammation which can further damage the digestive system, and also initiate number of symptoms associated with inflammation.
It will also tag that food protein (e.g. gluten or casein from dairy) as a foreign invader, launching a similar immune reaction every time you ingest it. 
Stomach cramping and bloating Diarrhoea Skin rashes such as eczema, hives, Seborrheic Dermatitis and Keratosis Pilaris Asthma Sinusitis and post nasal drip Recurrent infections 
Common Food Sensitivities
Eggs Dairy (casein) from cow’s milk Gluten found in pasta, bread, baked goods Nuts (most common are peanuts and almonds)
How Do I Know If I Have A Food Sensitivity?
Sometimes food sensitivities can be hard to pin point especially if your symptoms feel like they are there all the time.
A food elimination diet involves removing common food sensitivities from the diet for approximately 6 - 8 weeks.
If it’s a food sensitivity, often symptoms will significantly reduce within this time frame. You can then challenge each food for 1-3 days and see if any one of your symptoms come back.
If that sounds far too difficult to implement in your busy schedule, then a food sensitivity test can be taken.
This involves taking a small blood sample from a finger prick, and testing an IgG immune response to 96 different foods.
This test is different to an IgE allergy test that is done through an Allergist or your Doctor which is only testing for an
immediate reaction which occurs often in anaphylaxis e.g. peanut allergy.
The test will map out any possible food sensitivities that you have and rate it from mild, moderate to severe. 
Food Sensitivity Testing
dietary tips!
I have had immense success with this diet to quickly and effectively reduce bloating and a distended stomach.
Whether you have low stomach acid, small intestinal overgrowth, a parasite infection, or a food sensitivity, you can
benefit from these dietary changes that aims to:
Today you can start to reduce your bloating by simply changing to
a low starch, low sugar diet.
1. Reduce the food that feeds bacteria and
fungal overgrowths in the small intestine
and/or large intestine.
If these dietary guidelines are going to help your bloating, you should see a change with in 3-4
These dietary guidelines aim to reduce overgrowth of bacteria, yeast and reduce the food available to any possible parasite infection.
This diet also aims to remove common food sensitivities which could be driving inflammation and irritation in your digestive system leading to bloating.
Though this diet will provide symptomatic relief and make you feel better, it is still important to get to the root cause of your bloating by addressing the possible triggers as mentioned above. This will ensure you don’t have to stay on such a restricted diet for long periods of time.
processed chicken)
- Organic meats:  beef, pork, veal, lamb, chicken, turkey (maximum of once per week for all red meats) - Cold-water deep-sea fish (eg. Salmon, Halibut, Canned Light Tuna (eat Albacore only once per week), Cod, Sardines and Anchovies. - Legumes: Black, Adzuki, Mung, Chickpeas, Lentils, & Barlotti beans, eat 1-2 times per week (these beans are easier on digestion and contain less starch). - Tofu and tempeh can be consumed 3-4 times a week. - Eggs (organic &pasteurised)
Dairy Products
Milk, cream, ice- cream, chocolate, cheese and other dairy products and dairy solids. (Dairy contains lactose which is a natural sugar as well as casein which can be a common food sensitivity)
- Milk: Unsweetened Almond Milk, Coconut Milk (avoid soy
milk as it can be a common food sensitivity and cause
bloating) - Dips: Hummus and other
dairy-free dips
Sugar, sweets, sugar added to foods
Stevia, 80% Dark Chocolate, Xylitol (small amounts only, can cause bloating)
Avoid white potato/corn
- Pumpkin, artichokes, beetroot, cabbage, green peppers, tomatoes, parsnips, squash, cabbage, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, string beans, asparagus, onions, egg plant, okra, kohlrabi, endive, lettuce, cucumbers, sweet potato (1/2 cup only) celery, spinach, broccoli (1/2 cup only), zucchini, onions, salad greens, kale and bok choy. - Eat 7-8 serves of vegetables per day (1 serve = ½ cup). -Vegetables should be eaten raw, steamed or gently stir- fried. Do not boil or microwave.
Grains: Bread and
 Wheat, Rye, barley, Corn, White Rice, Buckwheat, Millet, Soy flour, potato flour, tapioca, arrowroot or gluten-free flour -Bread -Pasta - Cereals & Crackers
- Quinoa (a grain that is high in protein) – use in salads, at dinner, or quinoa flakes as a
breakfast cereal/porridge - Chickpea Flour (Besan flour)
- Brown rice - Wild rice - Amaranth
- Millet
Alcohol, Caffeine (Coffee, Tea), Milk, Cola, soft drinks, juices
Herbal teas, Green tea, filtered water, freshly prepared veggie juices, turmeric latte, dandelion root coffee substitute
salad dressings and spreads.
- Cold pressed extra-virgin olive oil, infused oils (garlic or chilli) - Ghee - Flaxseed oil - Sesame Oil - Nut Butters (Melrose ABC     Spread, Almond butter)  available in the health food section of the supermarket or in health food stores) - Tahini (sesame seed paste) - Fresh Avocado
Fruit Avoid grapes, banana, melons (rockmelon, watermelon, honey dew), pineapple, mango, dried fruit (contains sulphur preservative).
2 servings of fruit per day - Berries (all varieties) – 1/2 cup - Citrus fruit (orange, grapefruit, mandarin) - 1 piece - Kiwi – 1 piece Passion fruit – 1 piece - Rhubarb – 1 stalk - Avocado – 1⁄4 - Cherries – 3 - Lychee – 5 - Pomegranate – 1⁄2 small or 1⁄4 cup of seeds - Stone fruit (nectarine, plum, peach) - 1 piece
Food Group Foods to Avoid Foods to Enjoy
smell “rancid”.
- Fresh unsalted and unroasted nuts such as almonds, walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts, pine nuts and Brazil nuts (can soak and activate for improved digestion) - Seeds such as sesame, sunflower, flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds. - Eat a small handful of nuts (variety) per day (approximately 15 nuts)
Yeasts Foods containing yeast, commercially prepared condiments, peanuts, canned foods, Vegemite, Promite, Bread, Beer, Wine/Champag ne, Spirits.
Yeast-free foods: all fresh vegetables, nuts and seeds (described above), yeast free and gluten free breads, beverages listed above, nut spreads, avocado etc.
Food Group Foods to Avoid Foods to Enjoy
Getting on top of your bloating is essential for your overall digestive health and well being.
Not only will you feel so much better at the end of the day without
the dreaded bloat, but you will feel more energised and comfortable at work so that you can focus on what matters most!
To review here are my top tips for getting on top of that bloated tummy:
1. Eat your meals in a relaxed environment away from your computer desk.
2. Chew your food adequately to initiate digestion.
3. Take a HCL supplement or herbal bitters to increase stomach acid production and support healthy digestion.
4. Treat any digestive pathogens such as small bacterial or fungal overgrowth as well as parasitic infections.
5. Identify food sensitivities through an elimination diet or food sensitivity test.
6. Heal leaky gut.
7. Go on a low starch diet to reduce fermentation in the digestive system.
Top Tips
Yours in health,