We received an email the other day from one of our ‘babblers’ asking for advice on how to relieve gas and bloating after egg retrieval.
Naturally, we turned to our brilliant nutritionist for her words of wisdom. Melanie Brown swears by her anti bloating green juice and although not the most delicious of juices, it does the trick! Before we bring you Mel’s nutrition advice, it’s important to understand why we experience this bloating after egg retrieval.
The good news is that the bloating you’re experiencing in your stomach is a sign that your body is responding to vital hormones in the fertility drugs.
Discomfort usually occurs as multiple follicles develop, causing the ovaries to enlarge. The cramping and bloating usually lasts for 7-10 days, after which your ovaries should return to their normal size.
As always, listen to your body though.
If bloating and discomfort increases over the 7-10 days after your retrieval, or you experience pain and nausea, seek advice from your doctor as you may be developing OHSS. Make sure you read through our article on the signs of OHSS.
There are many things you can do to help with the bloating. To start with, you could try Mel’s juice!
Anti Bloating Green Juice
This is perfect for that horrible bloating feeling you get with PMS or after a heavy weekend, or during IVF after egg collection. The celery, parsley and cucumber are all slightly diuretic (water removing) and fennel is the perfect anti-bloating ingredient. Spinach, ginger, apple and lime are rich in nutrients and anti-inflammatory compounds.
You can either use a juicer (a cold press juicer is always better as cold pressing retains vital enzymes), or a Nutribullet, or even a blender, but the consistency with the latter can be a bit thick. This juice is best taken first thing in the morning when still fresh.
For one person
- A small or half a large fennel bulb
- 2 sticks of celery
- A small knob of ginger
- Half a small cucumber
- A green apple
- A handful of spinach
- Juice of half a lemon or lime.
Other things you can do
- Drink more water, (as crazy as this sounds) as increased fluid intake can help flush what you are retaining.
- Avoid salt. Salt causes your body to hold onto large amounts of water.
- Cut down on heavy starches such as bread, potatoes and pasta as they can cause water retention.
- Avoid artificial sweeteners, as they contain sugars and starches that can cause gassiness and bloating.
- Eat the right fiber. Soluble fiber will add to bloating. Soluble fiber is found in food such as apples, oranges, pears, beans, oats and lentils. Insoluble fiber is better for you as it does not dissolve in water; it adds bulk to waste matter to help it move through the gut. It is found in whole-grain foods, brown rice, barley, broccoli, cabbage, nuts and seeds.
- Avoid fizzy drinks.
- Activated charcoal. This supplement safely absorbs gas and reduces bloating.
- Fennel Tea is a mild diuretic and can help flush excess water and toxins out of the body. It is also incredibly soothing.