What causes an upset stomach?
Stomach upset is the result of swelling and inflammation in the stomach lining. It can be caused by a wide variety of things such as too much food, illness, food poisoning, allergies and even stress. Along with diarrhoea, other symptoms you may develop include nausea, cramps and fever.
RemediesLuckily, if you develop a bad case of stomach upset, there are a few things that can help to relieve your discomfort.
BananasBananas are great for rehydrating after a bout of stomach trouble. They also contain pectin, which helps to create firmer bowel movements. If you feel nauseas and can’t seem to hold anything down, half a banana at a time may be just the thing to settle your stomach and soothe your digestive system.
Rice TeaRice water is another stomach settler and is very easy to make. It is bland and starchy which is just what you need at times like these.
1. Add 2 tablespoons of rice to a mug of water. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and cook until the rice is soft.
2. When the rice is cooked, strain the water out, adding slightly more water if you need to thin it down.
3. When the tea is cool enough, sip it slowly.
Ginger Root TeaGinger is fairly well known to be good at combatting motion sickness. It is also extremely useful in relieving other types of stomach upset too due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
1. Take a piece of fresh ginger root, about the size of your thumb nail and slice into pieces.
2. Add this to a mug of hot water and steep for 5 minutes.
3. Strain out the ginger and sip the tea slowly.
Chamomile TeaThis wonderful plant is used to treat many ailments. It is a mild sedative and muscle relaxant so it is perfect to help soothe an icky belly and it reduces inflammation in the mucus membranes which helps to reduce indigestion.
1. Dried chamomile flowers should be added to hot water and left to steep for 5 minutes or so. Covering the tea with a lid will help to keep more of the healing compounds in that can be lost through the steam.
2. Strain the flowers and enjoy the tea. Drink it slowly to prevent aggravating your stomach further.
PeppermintMenthol (found in peppermint) has useful anti-spasmodic properties that can be effective in soothing your stomach. It relaxes the muscles of your stomach, allowing food to pass through easier.
1. Tea can be made from either fresh or dried peppermint leaves.
2. Steep around 2 teaspoons of leaves in hot water for 5-10 minutes.
3. Strain the leaves and drink.
Warning: If you are suffering from heart-burn, peppermint can make it worse.
Hot Lemon WaterDrinking hot lemon water when your digestive system just isn’t right can work in two ways. Firstly, the hot water will help to flush out your system of any bad bacteria by stimulating your intestines. Secondly, the lemon will help to break down food so that your stomach doesn’t have to work as hard.
1. Squeeze the juice from a fresh lemon into a mug and add hot water.
2. If you like it sweeter you can also add some raw, organic honey.
Drinking hot lemon water on a daily basis can also prevent an upset stomach from occurring in the first place. It will also act as a detox for your liver and help with rehydration.
FennelBelonging to the carrot family, fennel is a liquorice flavoured plant that has been used in cooking and medicine throughout the ages. Anethole, a compound found in fennel oil, is what gives it its flavour and anti-indigestion properties. Fennel has also been shown to pathogens such as E-coli and salmonella.
1. For an upset stomach, take 1-12 drops of fennel oil each day until the symptoms pass.
2. Or, you can take a teaspoon of crushed fennel seeds instead.