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Gastritis

 

Gastritis is the term used to describe inflammation of the stomach lining.

 

Symptoms

Attacks of acute gastritis usually last one to two days and involve abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Many patients with chronic (or long-term) gastritis have no pain but may experience appetite loss or nausea.

 

Causes

Gastritis is commonly caused by irritants coming into contact with the stomach lining. These can include alcohol, coffee, medication such as aspirin, and tobacco smoke.

The infective organism Helicobacter pylori can also be responsible for gastritis. The presence of this bacteria in the stomach lining is a risk factor for the development of gastric ulcer disease.

 

Natural Therapies

  • A bitter herbal tonic containing herbs such as Gentian and Dandelion will help to balance your stomach's production of digestive acids and improve your overall digestion
  • Chamomile tea may soothe irritation and inflammation
  • Probiotic supplements containing Acidophilus and Bifidus will help to restore balance to digestive flora after episodes of diarrhea or vomiting
  • Slippery Elm can help soothe the inflamed membranes of the stomach lining and give temporary relief to the symptoms of gastritis

 

Lifestyle Factors

Remove foods from your diet which irritate your stomach. The most common culprits are alcohol, caffeine, soft drinks, citrus and hot spices. Eat more non-citrus fruits, cooked vegetables and soothing foods such as oatmeal.

Take the time to chew your meals properly in order to give your stomach time to prepare for the food's arrival by producing digestive juices.

Stop smoking, and avoid smoky environments.

 

Remedy

Be sure to chew your food thoroughly and eat slowly in order to keep your stomach functioning healthily. Eating on the run and when under stress can lead to an imbalance of the various digestive juices and enzymes required for proper food breakdown and absorption.

 

Important Notes

Consult your health care professional if:

  • You are vomiting blood
  • Your stools look like they contain blood or coffee grounds
  • You have severe stomach pain
  • You have excessive thirst, a dry mouth, or decreased urination
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