If you’re like me, you suffer from frequent upset stomachs. Because I get them as often as once a week, I try to use a homemade remedy and not medications or drugs to calm my tummy. Listed in this article are some of the do-it-yourself methods I use and recommend to calm your upset stomach.
Peppermint candy canes instead of Pepto Bismol
Peppermint oil has long been known to be a natural treatment for stomach problems. According to the Mayo Clinic’s website, peppermint has “shown some benefit for nonulcer stomach pain.” And the University of Maryland Medical Center website says peppermint has a calming effect on the stomach muscles, causing them to relax and ease your aches. If you have left over peppermint candy canes from the holidays, keep them in your cabinets, your purse/briefcase, and even in your car as a portable treatment for an upset stomach. If you have no candy canes, any peppermint hard candy will do. Unlike Pepto Bismol, candy canes have no aftertaste!
Flat ginger ale instead of Immonium
I don’t know about you, but Immonium makes me a bit nauseous. But ginger ale doesn’t. Ginger ale is just one of the many food products that uses ginger root. This native Asian spice is now commonly recommended by health care professionals to relieve an upset stomach and improve digestion. In fact, the Mayo Clinic website reports “good scientific evidence” that shows ginger is effective against treating nausea and vomiting during pregnancy.
About 15 years ago, I was diagnosed with a terrible stomach flu and I couldn’t hold anything down. My doctor recommended I try to drink some flat ginger ale. Truly some of the best advice I ever got. To make it flat, just poor about 6 ounces into a glass and stir with a spoon to try and remove as much of the effervescence as possible to avoid belching.
Saltine crackers instead of Rolaids
Our stomachs are very acidic. This acidity is necessary to aid in the chemical digestion of the food we eat. However, sometimes we overdo it on acidic foods, like citrus fruits, causing the acid to ‘burn’ the lining of our stomachs. To counteract this, eat something bland like saltine crackers. Although there are many other bland foods that can combat an upset stomach, crackers are cheap and portable and can be tucked away in your office desk or nightstand. About 4-5 crackers works for me and you don’t feel like you are eating a piece of chalk!
Mayo Clinic Website Drugs and Supplements- Ginger February 2010 and Nonulcer Stomach Pain-Alternative Medicine November 2009
The University of Maryland Medical Center Website Complimentary Medicine- Ginger November 2008 and Complimentary Medicine-Peppermint March 2009
Schiffert Health Center at Virginia Tech, Upset Stomach and Diarrhea (patient teaching) March 2010
Tate, Philip Seeley’s Principles of Anatomy and Physiology, Chapter 21 Digestive System, 2009, McGraw-Hill, New York, New York