The Foolproof Way to Avoid Holiday Bloat, According to a Doctor


Athena Calderone of EyeSwoon

With the endless stream of dinner parties, boozy holiday events, and hearty home-cooked meals, bloating could be considered an inevitable side effect of the holiday season. While we're all about indulging, especially around this time of year, the physical discomfort that comes with eating, drinking, and celebrating to excess can be almost unbearable. In search of a cure, Well+Good reached out to Robynne Chutkan, MD, author of The Bloat Cure, for some healthy, all-natural ways to prevent and relieve bloating over the holidays.

Her golden rule of thumb for holiday partygoers? Don't go hungry. "A lot of people eat light during the day, 'saving their calories' for the party, but then they end up filling their stomach up faster than the brain can process the stomach being full," explains Chutkan. "An apple before you head to the party is always a good idea." She also recommends skipping the meat, cheese, and beer while at the party; instead, opt for veggies and dip, fruit, and a glass of wine.

As for managing big meals like Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, she recommends eating breakfast beforehand but skipping lunch. "You want to come hungry, but you don't want to be ravenous to the point where you're eating to get your blood sugar up and not actually enjoying your food," she explains. During dinner, be sure to chew your food slowly and extend the meal for up to two hours, rather than rushing through it. This will give your body the time it needs to process feelings of fullness, leading to less consumption overall.

How do you balance fun and fitness during the holiday season? Share your personal tips below!