Wellness

10 natural tips to ease the pain of stomach ulcers

Ulcers can develop in many parts of the body, including the stomach wall. Some natural home remedies can relieve pain and other symptoms associated with ulcers. Stomach ulcers are sores that develop in the lining of the stomach or duodenum, which is the first part of the small intestine. Stomach ulcers are also known as peptic ulcers, gastric ulcers or duodenal ulcers. Stomach ulcers develop when stomach acid irritates the stomach lining.

Causes of ulcers include

– an infection with the bacterium Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori)
– long-term use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen or aspirin.
– Some people believe that stress or spicy food can cause an ulcer. These foods do not cause ulcers, but they can make them worse by increasing the production of stomach acid.

If a person has an ulcer, they may feel a burning sensation in their stomach. This burning sensation is often:

– intense for a few minutes or several hours
– subsides after taking antacids or stopping food
– starts in the middle of the night or during meals
– occurs intermittently for several weeks.

Here are 10 tips to relieve the symptoms of an ulcer

1. Probiotics

Yogurts contain probiotics which help restore the balance of bacteria in the digestive tract. Probiotics are living organisms that help restore the balance of bacteria in the digestive tract. In addition to helping achieve optimal gut health, they can help treat ulcers. Probiotics cannot kill H. pylori bacteria. However, they can reduce the amount of bacteria present, speed up the healing process and improve some symptoms. When taken alongside other treatments, probiotics can help eradicate harmful bacteria.

Probiotics can be found in the following sources:

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– yogurts
– fermented foods
– probiotic supplements
Some foods contain probiotics. But consider taking supplements, as they contain higher concentrations of probiotics per serving.

2. Ginger

Many people believe that ginger has gastroprotective effects. Some people use it to treat stomach and digestive issues, such as constipation, bloating, and gastritis. Ginger can help treat gastric ulcers caused by H. pylori bacteria. Consuming ginger can also prevent ulcers caused by NSAIDs.

3. Colorful fruits

Many fruits contain compounds called flavonoids, which are polyphenols. Flavonoids contribute to the richness of the colors of certain fruits. Polyphenols can help fight stomach ulcers. They can also help a range of other digestive issues, including spasms and diarrhea. Flavonoids protect the stomach wall against the development of ulcers. They do this by increasing stomach mucus, which inhibits the growth of H. pylori. Flavonoids also have antioxidant properties.

Flavonoids are present in fruits such as:

– apples
– the blueberries
– the cherries
– lemons and oranges
– nuts

4. Plantains

Plantains are a type of banana. Unripe plantains can have a positive effect on gastric ulcers. Unripe plantains contain a flavonoid called leucocyanidin. Leucocyanidin increases the amount of mucus in the stomach. This fruit can also reduce acidity, which can help prevent and relieve symptoms of ulcers.

5. Manuka honey

Manuka honey has antimicrobial properties that can be helpful in treating ulcers. Honey is a popular natural sweetener. People who regularly consume honey can experience a range of health benefits. Manuka honey has antimicrobial effects against H. pylori. This honey could be useful for treating stomach ulcers.
Honey is also used to speed the healing of wounds, including skin ulcers, burns and wounds.

6. Turmeric

Turmeric is a popular yellow spice frequently used in India and other parts of South Asia. Like chili peppers, turmeric contains a compound called curcumin. Researchers are beginning to study curcumin in regards to its health benefits. A 2013 review concluded that curcumin has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities that may help prevent stomach ulcers. However, there are a limited number of human studies. More research needs to be done to examine the effectiveness of turmeric in treating ulcers. Nevertheless, the first results seem to be positive. Scientists hope that turmeric may help relieve symptoms of ulcers and treat wounds.

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7. Chamomile

Some people use chamomile flowers and chamomile teas to treat minor anxiety, intestinal spasms, and inflammation. But chamomile extracts may also have anti-ulcer properties. Some researchers believe they may inhibit stomach ulcers and reduce their healing time.

8. Garlic

Garlic is popular in many parts of the world for adding flavor to foods. Garlic has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, which makes it useful for fighting infections. Some studies actually support the effectiveness of garlic in treating ulcers. For example, a 2016 animal study showed that garlic may help prevent the development of ulcers and speed up the healing process. According to a 2015 review, garlic may also help prevent the growth of H. pylori.

A 2015 study suggests that consuming two garlic cloves with a meal, twice a day, may have antibacterial effects against H. pylori.

9. Licorice

Licorice is a popular spice native to the Mediterranean region and Asia. Licorice has been used in traditional medicines for hundreds of years. Some people believe that eating dried licorice root can help heal and prevent ulcers. However, research tends to focus on supplement use, not dried licorice root. So, people interested in using this spice for ulcers may want to try it in supplement form.

A 2013 study found that taking licorice supplements can help fight H. pylori infections. The study suggests that the supplement helps prevent the bacteria from growing.

10. Aloe vera

Aloe vera is a popular carrier oil found in many topical lotions, cosmetics, and foods. Some studies looking at how aloe vera affects stomach ulcers have shown favorable results. For example, a 2011 study in rats reported that aloe vera treated ulcers similar to a popular anti-ulcer drug.

But the researchers studied animals, not humans. Scientists therefore need to conduct further research to see the effects of aloe vera on humans.

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Medical treatments for ulcers

When an H. pylori infection is causing the ulcer, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics. Because H. pylori can be difficult to clear, the person should take all doses exactly as prescribed, even after symptoms resolve. Often, the doctor combines several drugs and therapies to treat an ulcer. Combination therapies help relieve pain, prevent further damage, and cure any infection.

Sources

Asha, MK, Debraj, D., Prashanth, D., Edwin, JR, Srikanth, HS, Muruganantham, N., … Agarwal, A. (2013, January 30). In vitro anti-Helicobacter pylori activity of a flavonoid rich extract of Glycyrrhiza glabra and its probable mechanisms of action [Abstract]. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 145(2), 581–586

Ayala, G., Escobedo-Hinojosa, WI, de la Cruz-Herrera, CF, & Romero, I. (2014, February 14). Exploring alternative treatments for Helicobacter pylori infection. World Journal of Gastroenterology, 20(6), 1450

El-Ashmawy, NE, Khedr, EG, El-Bahrawy, HA, & Selim, HM (2016, July–August). Gastroprotective effect of garlic in indomethacin induced gastric ulcer in rats [Abstract]. Nutrition, 32(7–8), 849–854

Han, Y.-M., Park, J.-M., Jeong, M., Yoo, J.-H., Kim, W.-H., Shin, S.-P., … Hahm, K. -B. (2015, June). Dietary, non-microbial intervention to prevent Helicobacter pylori-associated gastric diseases. Annals of Translational Medicine, 3(9)

Haniadka, R., Saldanha, E., Sunita, V., Palatty, PL, Fayad, R., & Baliga, MS (2013, June). A review of the gastroprotective effects of ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe). Food & Function, 4(6), 845–855

Header, E. A, Hashish, AE-M., ElSawy, NA, Al-Kushi, A. G, & El-Boshy, M., & Elsawy, NAM, (2016, January). Gastroprotective effects of dietary honey against acetylsalicylate induced experimental gastric ulcer in albino rat. Life Science Journal, 13(1), 42–47

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