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In this day and age of tummy tucks and stomach slimmers sold on late night infomercials it is obviously important to many people to have a slimmer, trimmer waistline and fight stomach distension. Now, while surgery and various equipment may or may not work, and the military still uses stomach crunches as part of their training, for most poeple some of the simpler ideas for fighting abdominal distension have gone by the wayside.

1.Many people experience something that happens to stretch their stomach. It’s called distension. When the stomach is filled it presses on the muscles of the abdominal wall and stretches them as well. Imagine a balloon; as you fill it with water or air it stretches to accommodate the materials inside. Now, imagine a balloon inside a balloon. Fill the inside one and the outside one will also stretch out. Ah, but there is a solution- eat smaller meals more often-many people eat more than is required at any one meal for the body to efficiently process. A regular portion of meat or vegetables is about the size of your tightly clenched fist. One portion should be meat (or other source of protein source if you are vegetarian) and one should be simple carbohydrates like squash, spinach or green beans or complex carbs like potoatos, bread or pasta. The idea is to eat more of them throughout the day to give the body ample time to process each meal while providing more energy because the blood sugar levels don’t rise and fall so dramatically-also this does not stretch out the stomach wall.

2. Drinking water also helps. It makes you feel less hungry when you drink a glass of water just before you eat. Fluid gives more easily, too, allowing abdominal muscles to stay taut. Water is an important part of our physical make up and studies show that people don’t drink enough of it. Women should be drinking an estimated 3-4 quarts and men an estimated 4-6 quarts.

3. Knock off the carbonated beverages. Especially beer to get rid of that beer belly. Actuually carbonated beverages are pumped full of fizz and the gas will come out one way or another. In the meantime, it, too, is stretching out the abdominal wall. Take a balloon again and put it over a beer or soda bottle and shake it gently. It will fill up and as it does, stretches the balloon, much like what happens inside your stomach.

4. Posture in the workplace and at home. Did you mom or grandma ever warn you to sit up straight? Most of us should have someone telling us now. Sitting at a desk all day or behind the wheel of a car is where most people slouch, making the abdominal muscles relax and get lazy.

5. Bad posture happens at home too, when we hit the couch after dinner and turn on the remote after a hard day. Now for something different. After dinner, try a casual walk. It's not always easy but try something and see how you feel. Walking aids digestion and will help you sleep better. Just a few blocks is enough for about 15 minutes then build up more time as comfortable. Remind yourself with post it notes placed on your phone, fridge or cubicle to sit and stand up straight. Your body will thank you and you will present a better image.

These tips are not meant to replace an exercise program, but these easy tips help you on your way to ease stomach distension.