A stomach problem can make or break your day. Next to a toothache, a stomach ache is one of the most debilitating pains a person can experience. Many common stomach problems like indigestion, bloating, heartburn, diarrhea and cramps can be ways our bodies are telling us something is not okay within our system or eating habits.

On one end of the spectrum, it could be that you are menstruating, having a case of food poisoning or reacting to an unknown food allergy. In worst case scenarios, one has to be careful of ulcers or even cancer. There are many ways to soothe the common stomach problems you may be facing. The best remedies for chronic stomach illnesses are often found in nature. You can get creative in your approach to soothe the common stomach problems you have been experiencing.

1. Start a food journal.

We can’t all eat like we’re 18 anymore, and our body won’t like it if we try. Start a journal or make quick notes throughout your day when stomach discomfort arises. Make note of what you ate and when you noticed the onset of symptoms. Tracking your diet and recognizing your body’s reaction to certain things you are eating is one of the first ways you can start finding ways to soothe the common stomach problems you have been having.  If you are able to see a physician, you may want to bring your food journal along with you so they can get a glimpse into your eating habits. You may learn you are exhibiting gluten or lactose sensitivities, gallbladder disease or perhaps even gastroenteritis or Acid Reflux.

2. Give up cigarettes, drinking or late night snacks.

This may be a lot easier said than done. These are hard habits to break, but doctors continue to insist that these factors affect your body more than you could ever realize. Cigarettes, regular drinking and late night snacking can age you, make you feel tired and crave more salt or sugars, and in turn, leave you stressed and in pain. Cigarette smoking can lead to colorectal polyps or bowel cancer. Peptic ulcers are also common among cigarette smokers. Cigarettes, drinking and lots of snacking can mess with your gut health. There are noticeable differences once you give up these habits. Even coffee can create considerable damage to your stomach lining and will only increase your discomfort.

3. Drink ginger tea.

Ginger plain is an ancient remedy that can effectively calm and soothe your upset stomach. These days, you can find many ginger teas that also do the trick. However, it’s best to drink ginger tea earlier in the day and not right before bed as it can prevent you from getting a good nights rest. If you are in pain, and want to sleep, you may opt for a mint or fennel-based tea. The brand Yogi Tea has a great selection of teas according to your physical needs. If you cannot find them at your local grocer or supermarket, you can order online from them directly or on Amazon.com. Ginger is also a great option for a cold or nausea.

4. Incorporate zinc-carnosine, licorice extract, and cranberry into your diet. 

This “dynamic trio” are great at preventing gastric inflammation. Zinc-Carnosine was used in combating gastric illnesses among Japanese people and was found to be very effective. Introducing licorice root and cranberry juice are also powerful ways to soothe your stomach problem. Many may say that milk is a good way to soothe a stomach problem, but it can have adverse effects, as milk can be hard for the stomach to process when in a beleaguered state and some people are lactose intolerant, which will only worsen their condition.

5. Try yoga or acupuncture.

These yoga poses or these can be a comforting activity even during discomfort, as they allow you to stretch your body and make a soothing space in your inflamed regions. The Corpse Pose is very kind to your body, allowing you time to breathe and settle into your body without pressure or any other physical demands. As you check in with yourself, you can move into another pose that will help alleviate your pain.

I once heard a yoga instructor say that many of their clients tell her that attending yoga is the only time they are “allowed to play or rest or just breathe.” During the frantic movements and activities of life, it’s easy to abandon yourself and forget that even as an adult, you need a safe place to process everything and get in touch with your precious temple, also known as your body.

Acupuncture is another method in reducing the stress some parts of your body are receiving when you are experiencing a stomach problem. If you are too frightened of needles, you may consider visiting with the acupuncturist first and discussing the procedure in person, or looking into acupressure as a starter.

6. Eat plain rice.

Rice is one of the most commonly consumed foods all over the world. It has been relied on for many a century and transcends culture. It can be filling and will absorb acids and gases, and it can help you have more solid and consistent stools. It’s a great option if you are suffering from diarrhea or another stomach problem. Eating it plain will avoid any unnecessary inflammation, but if you cannot bear to do so, a vegetable or chicken broth or even yogurt, as the Turkish do, can be very helpful. Another interesting recipe for alleviating an upset stomach, is to make a rice tea. Boil a half a cup of rice in six cups of water for about 15 minutes. Then strain the rice, and pour the remaining water in a mug and add a bit of honey or sugar and drink.

7. Nibble on Caraway seeds.  

Caraway seeds have a long history of superstitious powers. Those were never proven, but their positive effects on the stomach have been. They can be used when you experience heartburn, bloating, gas, loss of appetite and other pains of the stomach and intestines flare up. Caraway seeds can even kill bacteria, a leading cause of much of the stomach problems we experience today, and get your bowels back into working order. You can nibble on the seeds or find an extract oil to include in a soothing drink or other meal. Those with diabetes, however, are told to be careful of their intake of caraway seeds. Remember that your best option is always to see a physician you trust that can provide you a more nuanced approach to your wellness needs.

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