6 Foods for Better Digestion (and Less Bloat)

Amanda Montell

So much of our daily health and emotional state hinges on how our body is reacting to the foods we put in it. A day of bad digestion and bloating can ruin your day. Over the past few years, fermented foods and the probiotics they contain have become a large part of the conversation about how to improve digestion. In fact, a Byrdie article from 2015 stated that fermented foods were “so hot right now.” 

As a refresher, fermented foods are products “that have been left to sit and steep until the sugars and carbs become bacteria-boosting agents,” says natural foods expert Annalea Krebs, CEO of Social Nature, a product sampling community that connects people to natural wellness products. "Consuming fermented whole foods, such as sauerkraut and kefir, goes way back to the diet of our ancestors, but they’ve seen a reemergence due to a plethora of research showing fermented foods provide a potent source of probiotics, which are key for immunity, digestion, disease protection and even emotional health."

But knowing that fermented foods help improve digestion is only half the story. The other half is understanding exactly how they function in the body and then learning how to incorporate these seemingly bizarre items (kefir?) into our everyday diets. Keep scrolling to learn how to use fermented foods to beat belly bloat.

protein powders and bars are relatively new to the landscape. However, expect to see more cropping up.” The benefit to these plant-based supplements is that they provide both probiotics and protein without aggravating lactose intolerances or whey sensitivities. “By the process of , protein powders and bars are easier to digest, requiring the body to do less work to absorb nutrients,” Krebs says. Just make sure to look for products that are low in sugar, gluten and fillers, like the one above.
Tempeh might not look so pretty when raw, but it is very a versatile food made from fermented soybeans. Tempeh can be transformed into a number of different dishes, including delicious stir-fry meals and a convincing vegan bacon. Despite the controversies surrounding soy, most nutritionists agree that when eaten in moderation, it can absolutely be a part of a healthy diet. 
Don’t get too excited: We’re not recommending that you down a bottle of rosé every night. But there is room for alcohol in the life of someone with great digestion. How? “In some cases, the fermentation process actually creates additional nutrients,” Lewis says. “In the case of alcoholic beverages, B vitamin synthesis is part of the fermentation process.” That means four ounces of provides a “microdose of essential B vitamins,” in addition to the benefits of probiotics.