Are you desperate to have a flat tummy for an upcoming event? Is your current low-carb diet and running not working for you? Try this effective anti-bloat diet! It’s also a good diet for running.
The ideal diet would give everyone a flat tummy while still allowing you to drink alcohol and chocolate. You can get rid of bloating and tummy pain with the help of this five-day diet which works on the theory that starch and carbohydrates make the stomachs balloon up. When these foods are banned from your diet, you’ll have a flatter stomach in just a few days.
The diet is not as prohibitive as one might imagine – you can still eat chocolate and ice cream and drink wine, coffee, tea and beer. Nutritionist Carol Sinclair created the diet when searching for a cause for her own bloating and stomach pain. She went from one doctor to another, yet her symptoms disappeared onlywhen she gave up eating starch.
Why women bloat
Not all women suffer from bloating. Carol suspects that the ones who do not bloat have very efficient digestive systems. Many women eat starch more than they should, making it difficult to completely digest. This leads to bloating. Carol explains that a range of bacteria (both good and bad) are found in the stomach and live on undigested starch. It is the bad bacteria that causes the starch to ferment, resulting in pain and bloating.
Starch is made up of sugars that come from plants. Starch causes digestive problems in many, but not all. Some people may need to cut out all starchy products, while others can get away with cutting out the main culprits such as wheat and grain products. It is highly recommended to cut out all starch while on the five-day diet. One can reintroduce those foods after the diet to learn about your starch intolerance levels.
The Starch Test
The starch found in the food will turn black when tested with iodine (you can buy this in a dropper from your local chemist). By dropping a small amount on a tiny piece of white bread, the water will turn from orange to black. This will be your target and you can try it with any type of food. Grain foods get the blackest color. Any food that runs to pale grey to black indicates that starch is present.
Foods you CAN eat
- Tofu, lamb, beef, poultry, pork
- Fish and smoked salmon, starch-free processed meats
- All raw and cooked fruits (except pineapples, bananas and mangoes)
- Celery, spinach, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, peppers, spring onions, fennel, asparagus, mushrooms, garlic, shallots and leeks, onions (not fried brown)
- Salt, herbs, German and French mustard, onion powder and dried garlic
- Chocolate, cocoa, honey, all jams, maple syrup and jellies (not thickened with starch)
- Egg custard, ice cream, mousse, crème caramel, crème brulee, fruit sauces, meringues, fudge, toffees, chocolates, biscuits and cakes made with ground almonds
- Eggs, olive oil, cream cheese, milk, yogurt (make sure it does not contain starch)
- Coffee, tea, beer, wine, spirits, cider, lager and natural orange juice
Foods you CAN’T eat
- Breads, rolls, croissants and buns
- Bran, bulgar wheat, oats, rye, modified starch, cracked wheat, pearl barley, whole-meal, wheat flour, rice and wheat germ.
- Breakfast cereals including muesli
- Crackers, cookies, cakes and biscuits
- Quiches, flans, pies, pastries, pizzas, foods with bread crumbs and battered foods
- Noodles, dumplings, pasta
- Pancakes, soufflés, doughnuts, puddings
- Sausages, gravies, meatballs, rissoles
- Most pates, chutneys, relishes, sandwiches
- Foods thickened or mixed with soya beans or soy flour, lentils, all beans, peas and textured vegetable protein
- Potatoes, sweet potatoes
- Bacon (fried or grilled) with a fried egg.
- Mix a small pack of ready-to-eat prawns (about 200g), 1 boiled egg, Hellmann’s Real Mayonnaise (optional; not low-fat) and 1 ripe avocado.
- Roast, grill, bake or steam any fish, poultry, beef, lamb or pork to your own recipe without adding flour or starch.
- Eat with salad or low-carb vegetables.
- Add rice or potatoes for your family.
- Shop-bought chocolate mousse.
- Melon wedges followed by smoked salmon and/or a selection of cold meats and cheeses.
- Bacon Star (serves 2). Lay 750g/1½lb bacon rashers in a large, shallow, ovenproof dish and place in oven at gas mark 6/200ºC (190ºC in a fan oven). Peel and grate 2 medium sweet apples, then grate 175g/6oz mild cheese. Remove partly cooked bacon, cover with a layer of apple and top with grated cheese. Return to oven and cook for 15-20 minutes, till cheese is melted. Ideal as a cold snack when travelling, too.
- Marinated Lamb Chops (serves 2-3). Put 6 lamb chops in bowl. Whisk together 4tbsp raspberry vinegar, 2tbsp redcurrant jelly, 1tbsp fresh rosemary leaves, 1tbsp olive oil, 2tbsp orange juice and pour over chops. Leave in fridge for several hours. Remove chops from marinade and cook in oven till tender. Alternatively, have an omelet with a smoked salmon and crème fraîche filling.
- Shop-bought portion of panna cotta (caramel or coffee flavour).
- Eggs (poached or boiled).
- Goats’ Cheese Salad
Ingredients: Mix 100g/ 3½oz goats’ cheese, salad (lettuce, herbs, olives, tomatoes, capers). Toss with vinaigrette made with lemon juice, olive oil, mustard and vinegar. Place cheese under grill till beginning to brown, then place on salad.
- Smoked Fish Puff (serves 1). Flake 175g/6oz smoked haddock, and mix with 2tsp tomato ketchup and 2 egg yolks. Whisk 2 egg whites till stiff and fold into fish mixture. Place in a small, buttered, ovenproof dish. Cook for 15-20 mins at gas mark 4/180ºC (170ºC in a fan oven).
- Serve with salad.
- Shop-bought portion of crème brûlée.
- Herta Frankfurters with grilled mushrooms.
- Salmon Salad (serves 1). Mix Little Gem lettuce, celery, 2 tomatoes, ½ red pepper, ½ yellow pepper, 1tbsp chopped parsley, medium tin pink salmon, vinaigrette (see Goats’ Cheese Salad).
- Chicken with Mustard and Roasted Veg (serves 2). Brown 6 chicken thighs/drumsticks with skin on in frying pan with olive oil. Drain excess. Roughly coat one side of chicken with Dijon mustard. Turn and coat other side. Pour in enough medium-sweet wine, to barely cover chicken. Cook on low heat, partially covered. During cooking, turn pieces and coat with more mustard. Cook uncovered at times to reduce sauce. Add more wine if it becomes too thick. When cooked, mix in a dash of runny honey.
- Hartley’s ready-made orange, raspberry or strawberry jelly.
- Melon followed by Greek yogurt with honey.
- Scrambled eggs (made using 2 eggs, butter, milk) topped with grated cheese and 1 sliced beefsteak tomato.
- Gammon Bake (serves 1). Spread 1tsp Dijon mustard over 1 large slice cooked gammon or ham. Peel and slice 1 small eating apple and lay on ham. Place 1-2 slices processed cheese on apple. Grill or cook at gas mark 6/200ºC (190ºC in a fan oven) till cheese is brown and bubbling.
- Wall’s Magnum Classic
Guide when eating out
Choose plain steak, lamb, chicken or fish that is plainly cooked without flour sauce, and have it dressed with low starch mayonnaise or vinaigrette. Non-starch allowed or ice cream dessert is allowed. You can drink wine, spirits, beer, tea, coffee and soft drinks except Schweppes Bitter Lemon. Chinese and Indian restaurants and takeaways are not recommended for your diet.
- Dates with cream cheese
- Salted or toasted almonds sprinkled with olive oil and salt
- Marzipan icing
- Plain milk chocolate bars with almonds and raisins
- Dried apricots and prunes
- Vanilla ice cream
- Cheese slices wrapped in lettuce
Three easy beat-the-bloat exercises
- Yoga wind-relieving pose
- Stretch the spine to aid digestion.
- Lie on your back.
- Inhale while pulling your right knee tightly to your chest.
- Keep your left leg straight on the floor.
- Press the shoulders and back of your neck onto the floor.
- Breathe for 10 seconds.
- Switch sides while holding your left knee onto your chest for 10 seconds.
- Complete the pose by hugging both knees to your chest and hold for 10 seconds.
- Stand with your feet together and place your left hand on your stomach.
- Lift your right hand to shoulder height, with your elbow and arm close to your body, palm facing in front of you.
- Breathe in through your nose.
- Breathe out slowly through your mouth, simultaneously pushing your right palm out in front of you.
- Time the outward motion with the outward breath. Breathe in through the nose and draw your right hand back to its starting position.
- Repeat three times, and increase over three weeks to six times.
- Finish by place your right hand on your stomach and your left hand on top.
- Breathe in and out three times.
Yoga upward boat pose
- Sit on the floor.
- Bend your knees and place your feet on the floor.
- Inhale, lean back and lift your heels off the floor, straightening your legs as much as possible.
- Extend your arms with palms facing down.
- Hold the pose for 30 seconds, keeping your back straight and ensuring your tummy muscles are working.