Dealing with feeling bloated and gassy is not quite a fun time, and only feels worse when you’re NOT in the comfort of your own home. Nothing is more annoying than having to squeeze your butt cheeks to hold in your wind at a dinner date or social gathering. Feeling gassy is such a common complaint these days, that it’s time to do something about it – with spices! Did you know that there are spices that combat gas?
If you love eating mashed cauliflower for lunch but don’t want to have to deal with the rumbling in your tummy all evening, or you want to enjoy beans without bracing yourself for whats to come, there are specific spices and herbs you can include into your recipes such as fenugreek, fennel, mint and white pepper that will help fend off gas. Hooray!
And I don’t know about you but once you become pregnant, bloating and gas becomes a whole new situation. So for the sake of your partner or really anyone in your vicinity, eat the d@mn spices.
8 spices and herbs that combat gas
This Ayurvedic herb is apart of the legume family and helps prevent gut disorders and helps with digestion. It has been widely used to help prevent constipation and even has antibacterial properties and “cleanses” the body by creating internal heat. Fenugreek tastes somewhat like celery and has a nutty flavor that is a tad bit sweet. It’s used a lot in curry dishes and when used in small amounts (since it can taste bitter if you add too much of it) you can add it to your vegetable dishes like roasted cauliflower – to fight off the gas effects from it’s cruciferous powers.
Mint like spearmint and peppermint are great to incorporate into recipes or to enjoy after a meal in the form of tea as it helps minimize bloating and gas. I like to add fresh mint to veggie skillet dishes and to curried chickpea dishes.
Caraway seeds contain protein, dietary fiber, and have micro as well as macro nutrients that help prevent gas in our gut. Even better? It contains specific volatile oils that can help eliminate gas if it’s already brewing. The fiber content and nutrients found in caraway seeds help prevent bad bacteria from growing in the gut and can help alleviate additional tummy troubles like constipation, PMS cramps and any sort of discomfort.
I LOVE garlic, and I don’t care if it gives me garlic breath – my hubby just has to deal with it! Not only do I love using garlic during cold and flu season to boost my immunity, it also helps your digestive system. BUT – it can also wreak havoc on your digestive system if you’re sensitive to it or need to follow a FODMAPS diet. This is one root that I’d say experiment with and see how you react to it before you go gung-ho.
Ginger is such a wonderful root. It helps with nausea (morning sickness specifically), digestion, and of course gas. When consumed, ginger helps rev up how your digestion works by helping produce bile and the juices in our gut that help move along digestion. How does this work? It’s all thanks to gingerol, the phenolic compound found in ginger. When your digestion is being guided by this volatile oil, it thus helps prevent gas since there aren’t any digestive troubles happening. It also contains properties that relax your intestines, allowing trapped gas to flow freely. I love adding ginger to my stir fry if I’ll be adding lots of broccoli to it (gas inducing veggie), or I’ll have ginger chews after I consume a meal that I know will get things going.
This spice can help relax your stomach and reduce spasms that cause cramping and discomfort. It’s commonly used in Mediterranean dishes and resembles fennel. Just like a majority of these other spices, anise contains specific essential oils that help rev up digestive juices that help move along gas causing backups.
In some restaurants, whole fennel seeds are available post meal as when they are chewed, the active properties are released into your digestive system to help move things along and prevent flatulence and bloating.
Black and white pepper
I pretty much use black pepper in everything, and LOVE the flavor of white pepper. Both of these peppers help us produce hydrochloric acid which is the juice needed to digest proteins and food. When you aren’t producing enough hydrochloric acid and your food settles in your stomach for extended periods of time, the fermentation process can begin – which is a HUGE culprit for gas! So when it comes to pepper, black pepper helps produce this important acid for your gut, and white pepper helps calm our gut as it contains anti-spasmodic properties which means it helps our gut relax and digest.
In addition to these herbs and spices, I also take a daily probiotic and enzyme to support gut health and improve my digestion. I love my post-meal enzymes, especially when I consume meat or poultry that takes more effort to digest. I also usually take my probiotic in the evening as I personally feel like it works best in my body overnight, thus helping me have healthy elimination the next day (TMI but this is what it takes to spread the word about good gut health practices!!).