The Bloat Cure (★★★☆☆)

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Robynne Chutkan  *  Avery  *  April 19, 2016  *  224 Pages

This book isn’t what I thought it was going to be. The intro claims your belly will be “flat as a pancake” by the time you finish the book, so I guess I was expecting more of a step-by-step program or elimination process. But this is really 100 short chapters listing ALL possible causes of bloating–from sugar to menopause to cancer (LOTS of different kinds of cancer) to diverticulosis to soda. Honestly, you can get the same result by plugging “bloating” into the Web MD symptom checker online.

My takeaway from Bloat Cure is that I should limit (and possibly eliminate altogether) dairy, gluten, sugar, soy, alcohol, and meat–a tall order, but it’s advice most everyone has heard before. Chutkan also encourages people to eat more veggies, as she believes lack of fiber (from real food sources–not processed) is a major cause of bloat. Her 1-2-3 Rule helps you achieve this and is easy to remember: eat one vegetable for breakfast, two for lunch, and three for dinner. Chutkan, for example, has a green smoothie in the morning; carrots and cucumbers with hummus in the afternoon; and asparagus, lettuce, and tomatoes for dinner. I’m going to try to do the same.

There is also some good info on the devastating effects of antibiotics to your gut. I had no idea that taking a probiotic helped so LITTLE to replenish good gut bacteria. That was (depressing) news to me.

Ultimately, I learned a few things from this book, but I was hoping for more. Like I said, you can get pretty much the same result by searching for “causes of bloating” online. Unfortunately, Bloat Cure just doesn’t add much to the conversation.

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