Flat belly: how can food supplements help?
Aurélie Siffre, Doctor of Pharmacy, answers us.
Digestion and Flat Belly, some figures for the French
According to Synadiet (2021), improving digestion/transit is among the TOP 5 reasons for consuming food supplements.
The feeling of bloating is one of the recurring complaints for which patients seek advice from pharmacies .
According to the IPSOS survey of 8 February 2011, the French are bothered by their belly, with most of those questioned disliking “looking at their belly” (77%) or showing it (84%). As a result, 50% of French people would like to improve the belly’s appearance, 22% would like to feel better about it and 17% would even like to be proud of it. Many people ‘feel’ stress (81%), nerves (58%), love (28%) or pleasure (21%) through their belly.
So, for two out of three French people, feeling good about their stomach/belly is also feeling good about themselves .
Flat belly: what works?
One of the effective ways to avoid the accumulation of gas in the intestine is to limit the consumption of certain foods such as cabbage, pulses or wholemeal bread. However, sometimes dietary hygiene measures are not enough, and certain plants can be used to reduce this discomfort  .
Use recognised traditional plants
The plants mainly used are:
- Green anise
For example, as with green anise, star anise or tarragon, the major active ingredient in fennel is anethole. Its seeds are used, and the essential oil extracted from the seeds and flowering tops are used for their soothing properties on stomach aches, digestive disorders and infant colic  .
Combining specific digestive and slimming actions
In the ” flat belly ” formulations, we often find a combination of specific slimming active ingredients for the belly, such as chromium, as well as the plants for digestive purposes mentioned above.
The combination targets both digestion and transit, but also abdominal fat. The objective? A quick effect on intestinal comfort, then on waistline.
In fact, since 2012, the European health authorities (EFSA and the European Commission) have considered that food supplements containing at least 6 micrograms of chromium per 100g contribute to normal macronutrient metabolism and to the maintenance of normal blood glucose levels .
Just a word about chromium: it is a cofactor of insulin, which facilitates its transport and action. Excess abdominal fat makes the body less sensitive to insulin, and the vicious circle begins: blood sugar levels rise, and unused sugar is stored in the adipocytes.
Chromium is therefore an essential trace element in slimming formulations for the belly .
Flat belly: advice from the pharmacist
To prevent bloating, you should eat slowly and chew well, and limit, without banning, certain foods (onions, cabbage, sauerkraut, beans, lentils, radishes, leeks, stone fruits, etc.). Probiotics in punctual cures can help to enrich the intestinal flora and reduce these discomforts.
Finally, the herbs and minerals mentioned above are a complementary aid; ask your health professional for advice.
Laboratoire PYC offers a NEW FLAT BELLY FORMULA. It is vegan, clean label, based on chromium, fennel and a blood orange extract with proven effectiveness.
For all requests for food supplement development:
 IPSOS, Des français complexés par leur ventre
 Vidal, Ballonnement, flatulence et aérophagie
 Vidal, Comment réagir en cas de ballonnements?
 Vidal, Phytothérapie: fenouil
 Vidal, Phytothérapie: anis vert
 Vital, Complément alimentaire: chrome