the rise of the food baby
Wed Jul 20 2016
Last week, I bumped into an old friend I hadn’t seen in a while. She looked great—healthy and toned, with vibrant, glowing skin. My eyes settled on her protruding stomach, and I gasped. “Congratulations! How far along are you?” I asked, to which she replied, “About 45 minutes. We’re calling it Burrito, regardless of whether it’s a boy or girl.” As my foot introduced itself to my mouth, I kicked myself for not knowing a food baby when I saw one, especially after I’d conceived my very own just two days prior thanks to a late night rendezvous with a hard block of aged sharp cheddar.
The ‘food belly’ or ‘food baby’ is becoming an epidemic, and it’s not just affecting us little people—even Jennifer Aniston has fallen victim. This month, after InTouch printed photos of her voluminous bloat alongside the headline “Jen’s FINALLY Pregnant”, her rep had to refute the claims by stating, “What you see is her having just enjoyed a delicious big lunch.”
Everyone reading her rep’s statement felt empathy, because we’ve all been there. Food Belly does not discriminate. Just last week the popular fitness blogger Tiffany Brien posted a side-by-side comparison photo of her belly 12 hours apart, and captioned it, ‘No I'm not 6 months pregnant. It's just my food baby...’ The Facebook post went viral, with thousands of her followers (and complete strangers) lamenting with her on the bummer of the bloat. She wrote, “I have learnt a lot through my own research into my own problems once I noticed my body playing up when I did certain things, and ate certain foods. It was really frustrating because I couldn’t work out what was triggering it.” So, we decided to do some research of our own and identify some of the leading offenders of food belly impregnators, and some proactive ways you can ensure your stomach stays tight and toned.
Cruciferous vegetables. As their name suggests, they will crucify your digestive system. Just kidding! Cruciferous vegetables contain a sugar called raffinose that cannot be digested until your gut bacteria ferments it, a process which produces gas. Main offenders include Cauliflower, Broccoli, Cabbage and Brussels sprouts.
Dairy. Sure, there are numerous health benefits to dairy, like calcium, and some live cultures found in yoghurt can actually be great for the gut. But, some people’s digestive systems just can’t handle lactose. It is reported that upward of 10% of the American population are lactose intolerant. Lactose is made up of the two simple sugars: glucose and galactose, but if your body cannot break down this sugar bond, dairy will pass through to your large intestines undigested. And that can leave you looking like you’re in your third trimester.
Lentils and beans. Lentils and beans contain indigestible sugars called oligosaccharides, as well as saponins that protect them against insects. However, saponins also prevent protein digestion resulting in stagnation and gas of the bowels.
Salt. The problem with salt is simple—it causes your body to retain water, predominately around your abdomen area. Less salt = less swell.
So, what steps can you take to fight the war against inflation? Foods that are anti-bloat include bananas, asparagus, cucumber, ginger, spinach, and peppermint tea, to name but a few. Still, there could be other reasons for your bloating that have nothing to do with your cooking. For instance, stop eating your food like it’s your last meal on Earth! Chew slowly so your food can be broken down and easily digested, and try not to swallow so much air when you’re inhaling your food.
Exercise is also hugely important in the fight against the food belly. And you know what happens when you exercise? You get thirsty, and then you want to drink water. But unless you have Penta on hand, don’t do it! Countless customers have told us that Penta does not bloat them the way high TDS water does, and we know why. It’s because of Penta’s extremely low (almost non existent at less than 1 mg/L) Total Dissolved Solids level. Other beverages with high TDS levels (minerals, electrolytes, etc.) sit in the gut until processed by the body, which causes bloating and nausea in some people, especially when in excess concentration after chugging an entire bottle after a work out.
So, there it is, in a nutshell. Watch out for gassy foods and salt, eat slowly, exercise, and drink pure Penta water. Because no one wants to feel bloated, and Burrito isn’t a cute name for a kid, regardless of whether it’s a boy or a girl.