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21 home and natural remedies for upset stomach and indigestion
Upset stomach, or indigestion, is usually no cause for concern. It is often possible to treat the symptoms using home remedies. In this article, we look at 21 of the most popular natural remedies for treating an upset stomach, including how they work and how to use them. We also explain when to see a doctor.
Home and natural remedies for upset stomach
Medically reviewed by Debra Rose Wilson, Ph.D., MSN, R.N., IBCLC, AHN-BC, CHT — Written by Jennifer Huizen on January 11, 2020
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Everyone experiences an upset stomach and indigestion, or dyspepsia, from time to time after eating or drinking. The condition is usually no cause for concern, and it is often possible to treat the symptoms using home remedies.
Common symptoms of an upset stomach and indigestion include:
heartburn, or acid reflux
nausea bloating gas
belching, sometimes bringing up bitter or foul-tasting fluid or food
bad-smelling or sour breath
hiccupping or coughing
This article looks at 21 of the most popular home remedies for an upset stomach and indigestion. We also explain when to see a doctor.
Twenty-one home remedies
Some of the most popular home remedies for an upset stomach and indigestion include:
1. Drinking water
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Dehydration can increase the likelihood of an upset stomach.
The body needs water to digest and absorb nutrients from foods and beverages efficiently. Being dehydrated makes digestion more difficult and less effective, which increases the likelihood of an upset stomach.
In general, the Health and Medicine Division (HMD) recommend that:
women should have around 2.7 liters (l), or 91 ounces (oz), of water a day
men should have about 3.7 l, or 125 oz, of water a day
Around 20 percent of this will come from food, with the rest coming from beverages. For most people, a good figure to aim for is approximately 8 or more cups of water a day. Younger children require slightly less water than adults.
For those with digestive issues, it is imperative to stay hydrated. Vomiting and diarrhea can lead to dehydration very quickly so people with these symptoms should keep drinking water.
2. Avoiding lying down
When the body is horizontal, the acid in the stomach is more likely to travel backward and move upward, which can cause heartburn.
People with an upset stomach should avoid lying down or going to bed for at least a few hours until it passes. Someone who needs to lie down should prop up their head, neck, and upper chest with pillows, ideally at a 30-degree angle.
Ginger is a common natural remedy for an upset stomach and indigestion.
Ginger contains chemicals called gingerols and shogaols that can help speed up stomach contractions. This may move foods that are causing indigestion through the stomach more quickly.
The chemicals in ginger may also help to reduce nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
People with an upset stomach could try adding ginger to their food or drinking it as a tea. Some all-natural ginger ales may also contain enough ginger to settle an upset stomach.
Ginger tea is widely available to buy in supermarkets and online.
In addition to sweetening the breath, the menthol in mint may help with the following:
preventing vomiting and diarrhea
reducing muscle spasms in the intestines
relieving pain Researchers Trusted Source Trusted Source
have found that mint is a traditional treatment for indigestion, gas, and diarrhea in Iran, Pakistan, and India.
Raw and cooked mint leaves are both suitable for consumption. Traditionally, people often boil mint leaves with cardamom to make a tea. It is also possible to powder or juice mint leaves and mix them with other teas, beverages, or foods. Mint leaves are widely available in health stores and online.
Sucking on mint candies might be another way to help reduce the pain and discomfort of heartburn.
5. Taking a warm bath or using a heating bag
Heat may relax tense muscles and ease indigestion, so taking a warm bath may help to ease the symptoms of an upset stomach. It could also be beneficial to apply a heated bag or pad to the stomach for 20 minutes or until it goes cool.
Heating bags are available to purcahse online.
6. BRAT diet
Doctors may recommend the BRAT diet to people with diarrhea.
BRAT stands for Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, and Toast. These foods are all starchy, so they can help bind foods together to make stools firmer. This may decrease the number of stools a person passes and help ease their diarrhea.
As these foods are bland, they do not contain substances that irritate the stomach, throat, or intestines. Therefore, this diet can soothe the tissue irritation resulting from the acids in vomit.
Many of the foods in the BRAT diet are also high in nutrients such as potassium and magnesium and can replace those lost through diarrhea and vomiting.
7. Avoiding smoking and drinking alcohol
Smoking can irritate the throat, increasing the likelihood of an upset stomach. If the person has vomited, smoking can further irritate the tender tissue already sore from stomach acids.
As a toxin, alcohol is difficult to digest and can cause damage to the liver and stomach lining.
How Do You Get Rid of a Stomach Ache in 5 Minutes?
Stomachache or abdominal pain can occur due to several different causes and the intensity may vary. It may not always be possible to get rid of a stomach ache in five minutes, but there are several over the counter (OTC) treatments and natural remedies to get rid of a stomach ache fairly quickly.
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It may not always be possible to get rid of a stomach ache in five minutes.Over the counter medical treatment
For gas-related pain, OTC medication like Mylanta, Gas-X (which contains the ingredient simethicone) can help get rid of gas and bloating.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can cause stomach ache and burning sensation (heartburn), an antacid or acid reducer like Pepcid AC or Zantac 75 can help.
For constipation, a mild OTC stool softener or laxative can help relieve constipation in most cases.
Abdominal cramps can occur due to diarrhea. Medicines like Pepto-Bismol, which contains loperamide or bismuth subsalicylate, can help reduce diarrhea and cramps.
Pain relievers, such as Paracetamol, Ibuprofen, can help reduce the abdominal pain and the pain of cramps caused due to several conditions. It may be combined with anti-cramping medications.Lifestyle and home remediesAnti-inflammatory foods:
Eating foods that have anti-inflammatory properties can reduce abdominal pain. These foods include blueberries, squash, cherries, capsicum, tomatoes, cold-water fish that are high in omega-3 fatty acids, beans, green leafy vegetables, and almonds. These foods also improve overall body health. It's advised to incorporate these foods in the diet throughout the year, instead of just during the periods. Sugary food, fried and fatty foods, white bread or pasta, alcohol, caffeine, and tobacco can increase cramps.Herbs to reduce cramps:
Chamomile tea, peppermint, fennel, cinnamon, ginger, turmeric root, and dill are some herbs that have anti-inflammatory effects and can reduce cramps. Sipping two cups of tea containing these herbs per day can help reduce abdominal pain. A small piece of ginger and/or turmeric root may be added to hot water or herbal teas, making it an effective cramp-relieving drink.Heat therapy:
Applying a heating pad, hot water bottle, hot towel, or heat wrap over the abdomen and back helps relax the muscles in the abdomen and relieve abdominal cramps and pain. The temperature should ideally be 104° Fahrenheit. Taking a hot bath with bubbles and essential oils or hot showers can also help.Eating practices:
Chewing food slowly, not talking while eating, making sure the food is well cooked, not lying down immediately after eating, and reducing excess coffee and tea intake.Exercise:
Gentle exercise like yoga, stretching, and tai chi can help reduce stress and relax the abdominal muscles. Physical activity can help relieve gas, bloating, and constipation.
What are the causes of stomachache?
Abdominal pain may be acute or chronic, continuous or intermittent, or mild or severe and can have many causes, such as:
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
Gas or flatulence Food allergies Peptic ulcer
Gastritis (infection of the stomach)
Abdominal muscle strain or pull
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Pelvic inflammatory disease
Cancer of the stomach, pancreas, liver, bile duct, gallbladder, or immune cells
Pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas)
Cholecystitis (inflammation of the gallbladder)
Decreased blood supply to intestines caused by a blocked blood vessel
Super Tips to Boost Digestive Health: Bloating, Constipation, and More
How to soothe a child’s stomach ache
If your kid complains of tummy pain, you may be able to help them with some home remedies.
Stomach aches are common in children. Whether it’s from indigestion, constipation, or even a viral infection, most stomach aches in kids are not serious and symptoms will usually resolve on their own.You can try soothing your child’s stomach ache with one of these home remedies:
Make your child lie face down and let them rest until their stomach pain resolves.
Apply a warm compress or heating pad on their stomach.
If the stomach ache is caused by spicy food, try giving them vanilla ice cream.
If the stomach ache is caused by constipation, try giving them yogurt.
Give them sips of warm water to drink.
Avoid carbonated, caffeinated, fatty, or sweetened liquids, such as sodas, tea, coffee, milk, and sports drinks.
If your child asks for a soft drink, choose one without caffeine. Shake the fizz out before serving.
Initially, put your child on a liquid diet. Offer them clear fluids, such as water, fruit juices mixed with water, ginger ale, or a simple broth.
5 Effective Home Remedies To Get Rid Of Stomach Ache Instantly!
Stomach ache is amongst the most common problems affecting people of all age groups due to varied reasons. Some common triggers for a stomach ache are, flatulence, bloating, food poisoning, the presence of specific diseases, excessive alcohol consumption and certain medications.
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Good advice, in small doses. 5 Effective Home Remedies To Get Rid Of Stomach Ache Instantly!
1mg TeamJune 29, 2017 Home Remedies
Stomach ache is amongst the most common problems affecting people of all age groups due to varied reasons. Some common triggers for a stomach ache are, flatulence, bloating, food poisoning, the presence of specific diseases, excessive alcohol consumption and certain medications. Thankfully, we some of the common natural remedies to relieve stomach ache are:1 . Ginger
Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties that help to reduce inflammation and pain. A mild stimulant, it also helps to promote blood circulation and aids the digestion process.
-To a glass of boiling water, add sliced ginger. Strain and let it cool a little. Sip it slowly. Drink this two-three times in a day to ward off the pain.
Up to 30% Off on Stomach care products2 . Mint (Pudina)
Mint is loaded with antioxidants and phytonutrients that help in the synthesis of digestive enzymes. They have a relaxing effect on the smooth muscles of the stomach, reduce acidity and flatulence.
-To a cup of water, add a few fresh leaves of mint or dried form of mint (1-2 teaspoons). Let it steep for 5-10 minutes. Sip the mixture slowly when it is still warm.3 . Fennel (Saunf)
Fennel seeds have been recognized as a powerful herb with carminative (helps in expelling gas) properties. The seeds are enriched with a rich volatile oil that aids the digestion process and also effectively reduces pain and uneasiness.
-To a cup of hot water, add a teaspoon of crushed fennel seeds. Let it steep for 8-10 minutes. Allow it to cool and strain it. You may choose to add honey to make it palatable. In case you like its taste, you can also chew them, as they serve as a brilliant mouth freshener as well.
Up to 25% Off on Pain Relief products4 . Asafetida (Hing)
Asafetida is an old age remedy for stomach ache. The spice contracts the muscles of the stomach and helps to relieve stomach ache effectively.
-To a glass of warm water, add a pinch of asafetida. Mix it well. Drink the mixture 2-3 times in a day. To make it palatable you can choose to add a pinch of rock salt to it.5 . Lemon
Lemon water not only helps to hydrate you but also provides the stomach with enough acids to digest the food aggressively, thereby reducing stomach ache and cramps.
-To a cup of water, add lemon juice. It is best to drink it in warm water, that too gradually (sip by sip).
**Consult India’s best doctors here***
So, try to avoid frequent stomach aches and indigestion by eating healthy and drinking lots of fluids throughout the day. Avoid the excessive intake of processed foods. Instead, replace it with fresh fruits and vegetables. Eat Healthy, Stay Happy!
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