An upset, queasy stomach can quickly ruin your day. Once that slight indigestion progresses to more advanced stages including cramping, nausea, or diarrhoea it may seem nearly impossible to survive the day outside of the restroom. While you may not feel like adding to your stomach contents, there are select foods can help soothe your stomach.
But first please note, if your stomach upset is due to overindulgence or eating foods that you are intolerant to, eating more will not help – the exception being food or drink that relieves gas or bloating. The only cure for eating an entire pizza is time to digest, or not overeating in the first place. The same goes for eating a bowl of ice cream if you know that you are lactose intolerant.
However, if you have progressed to the advanced stages and are suffering from vomiting and diarrhoea you do need to eat small (very small at first) amounts of food and drink to provide calories to restore energy and liquids in order to avoid dehydration. Here are a few foods that may help:
Did your Grandmother offer you a glass of ginger-ale when your “tummy” hurt? She was on the right track, but unless her ginger-ale contained real ginger, it was the carbonation that helped you burp and belch until the gas and bloating were relieved. But, in our scenario, you need real ginger or hard candy or teas that contain real ginger. Ginger possesses anti-nausea properties and helps to improve overall digestive health.
// Herbal Teas
In addition to providing liquids, herbal teas like peppermint and chamomile provide stomach soothing and even healing properties. Add a small amount of powdered ginger or grated ginger root to increase the tea’s effectiveness.
Papaya contains papain, a naturally occurring digestive enzyme that helps break down and digest foods that may be irritating your stomach. Papaya, fresh or frozen helps to soothe the stomach by promoting a healthy acidic environment. Tablets are available if the fruit is not.
Bananas provide energy and are easy on the stomach. Bananas also contain simple fiber if need for constipation, but also contain pectin which helps to naturally firm and form stools – considerably helpful if you are suffering with diarrhoea.
Apples and simple natural apple sauce will provide energy and are also rich in pectin which will help with digestion and stool formation. If your stomach is upset, try baked apple or the apple sauce as both are easier to swallow and digest. Also add…
Cinnamon has been used for centuries to combat morning sickness and diarrhoea, it is also helpful in relieving gas. Add cinnamon to your apple sauce and your teas.
Once you are feeling better and ready to tackle “real” food, rice may be your best choice. Rice is filling, easy to digest and will help your diarrhoea by absorbing fluids and adding needed bulk to your stool. Start with simple, plain white rice and advance to rice made with chicken broth or simple rice pudding with a small amount cinnamon.
Most people know this one, one or two basic plain crackers can help you ease back into solid foods. Your first choice of crackers should be low in sodium and free of unhealthy fats or unnatural colors or flavors.
When suffering from an upset stomach or fighting your way back from the ravages of nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea, remember to keep it simple as the majority of these soothing foods are natural, single ingredient foods.
What are your go-to’s when you have an upset stomach?