What Are Some Ulcer Symptoms
Some people with ulcers dont experience any symptoms. But signs of an ulcer can include:
- Gnawing or burning pain in your middle or upper stomach between meals or at night.
- Pain that temporarily disappears if you eat something or take an antacid.
In severe cases, symptoms can include:
- Dark or black stool .
- Severe pain in your mid- to upper abdomen.
How Are Stomach Ulcers Diagnosed
Stomach ulcers are most commonly diagnosed by endoscopy using a flexible tube with a tiny camera that is passed into the mouth and down to the stomach. This procedure is done under general anaesthetic.
Your doctor may also order blood tests, stool tests or an x-ray. You are also likely to have tests to check for Helicobacter pylori infection. Usually this involves a breath test, or a test of the stomach lining during endoscopy.
What Is Peptic Ulcer Disease
Peptic ulcer disease is a condition in which painful sores or ulcers develop in the lining of the stomach or the first part of the small intestine . Normally, a thick layer of mucus protects the stomach lining from the effect of its digestive juices. But many things can reduce this protective layer, allowing stomach acid to damage the tissue.
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A Natural Approach To Helping Yourself Through Your Diet
Ulcers are sores that can happen in your digestive tract, including your lower throat , stomach and intestines. Ulcers are usually caused by the bacteria Helicobacter pylori that many of us have in our bodies already. The symptoms can be made worse by your stomach acid.
It is not entirely clear why ulcers start but stress and diet, especially a fatty diet, are big contributing factors. A higher intake of fat can greatly increase your chance of getting an ulcer in the first place and cause other gastrointestinal problems. High salt intake is also implicated.
STOMACH ULCER TREATMENT
You can treat ulcers. A doctor will recommend antibiotics to kill the bacteria, a medical herbalist will recommend herbal antibiotics such as goldenseal.
Carefully controlling your diet is crucial to successful treatment. This is to make sure that your stomach produces less acid when digesting your food. Eating large meals requires the stomach to produce large amounts of stomach acid. So it is best to eat small meals. Ideally, you should be having 5 to 6 small meals a day and not 2 or 3 large ones.
Your meals should be low in fat and sugar and high in fibre. A diet based on fruits, vegetables and whole grains is just that. The reason for avoiding fatty foods, is that they are harder for you to digest, so your body then produces more stomach acid and aggravates your condition. Foods that are low in fat can speed up your recovery.
CUTTING DOWN ON RED MEAT
FRUIT AND VEGETABLES
The Most Frequent Symptoms Are Bloating And Pain
Intense, burning pain and discomfort in your epigastric part are typical peptic ulcer symptoms.
You may also suffer nausea, fullness, belching, heartburn, bloating, and fatty food sensitivity.
Loss of hunger or fast changes in eating habits is less frequent symptoms.
Some people reported dealing with frequent vomiting, vomiting with red or black blood, and unexplained loss of weight.
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What About Supplements
If youre currently taking antibiotics for a stomach ulcer, you might want to add a probiotic. Probiotics can help counter the negative effects of antibiotics on healthy gut bacteria while also making them more effective. Your doctor can help you decide which probiotic works best in your treatment plan.
Other H. pylori-fighting supplements to ask your doctor about include:
- deglycyrrhizinated licorice
Food For Ulcer Relief
Though the American College of Gastroenterology indicates no need to follow a specific diet plan for a stomach ulcer, research shows that adding food for ulcer relief to your diet can help heal the ulcer faster. Foods that alleviate the pain of an ulcer include the following.
- Foods Rich in Polyphenols: A June 2015 review in World Journal of Gastroenterology examined the role of polyphenols in peptic ulcer management. The extensive review confirmed dietary polyphenols have both protective and therapeutic potential for peptic ulcers. According to a November 2010 study in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the richest dietary sources of polyphenols are cloves, dried peppermint, star anise, cocoa powder, celery seed, dark chocolate, flaxseed, blueberries, many types of seasonings, fruits and vegetables.
- Fermented Foods:Fermented foods such as yogurt, kimchi, sauerkraut, miso, kefir and kombucha are rich in probiotics. A July 2016 review published in Frontiers in Microbiology concluded that in vitro and in vivo experiments and in clinical trials suggest probiotics have anti-H.pylori effects.
- Foods High in Flavonoids: In a March 2009 review published in Molecules, flavonoids act as gastroprotective and help heal gastric ulcers. The compounds have therapeutic potential for treating ulcers caused by H.pylori. Dietary sources of flavonoids include chocolate, berries, wine, onions, cabbage and plums.
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Is There A Peptic Ulcer Diet Plan
No particular diet is helpful for people with peptic ulcers. At one time, a bland diet and avoidance of spicy or greasy foods was recommended. Milk and dairy food have been used in the past for ulcer symptoms, but have not been proven to be effective. We now know diet has little effect on ulcers. In some people, however, certain foods seem to aggravate stomach ulcer symptoms. Keep a food diary with your intake and the resulting symptoms and avoid eating any foods that aggravate symptoms.
Which Foods Can I Eat And Drink
Eat a variety of healthy foods from all the food groups. Eat fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat dairy foods. Whole grains include whole-wheat breads, cereals, pasta, and brown rice. Choose lean meats, poultry , fish, beans, eggs, and nuts. A healthy meal plan is low in unhealthy fats, salt, and added sugar. Healthy fats include olive oil and canola oil. Ask your dietitian for more information about a healthy meal plan.
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Having The Stomach For A Healthy And Happy Life
Being diagnosed with stomach ulcers is a kick in the guts. Literally. But this condition shouldnt stop you from living a full and healthy life. Here are some tips to help you keep your stomach happy while you are addressing your stomach ulcers.
So How Do They Work Exactly
Antioxidant-rich foods like cherries, blueberries, kale, and spinach boost your immune system to more effectively fight infections and even help ward off stomach cancer.
Whats more, mom was right about forcing you to eat broccoli. Research indicates that sulforaphane, a compound found in broccoli, shows anti-H. pylori functionality.
Probiotic foods can be a little more complicated to work into your diet, but they are worth the effort! Clinical studies indicate loading up on foods like miso, sauerkraut, and kimchi are like kryptonite for H. pylori bacteria.
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Eat Cabbage If You Have Ulcers
It is one of the best natural food to eat if you have ulcers.
Cabbage is rich in antioxidant that helps boost body immune system.
The antioxidant properties present in cabbage help fight off H. pylori the ulcer-causing bacteria infection.
Cabbage is also high in fiber and con promotes gut bacteria that help in digestion and prevent leaky gut.
Therefore eating cabbage can help you reduce stomach ulcers and prevent other chronic diseases such as stomach cancer.
Studies show that eating cabbage improves digestive system and it is also rich in mineral and vitamins that helps in boosting your immune system.
What Ulcer Treatments Are Available
If your ulcer is bleeding, your doctor may treat it during an endoscopy procedure by injecting medications into it. Your doctor could also use a clamp or cauterization to seal it off and stop the bleeding.
For most people, doctors treat ulcers with medications, including:
- Proton pump inhibitors : These drugs reduce acid, which allows the ulcer to heal. PPIs include Prilosec®, Prevacid®, Aciphex®, Protonix® and Nexium®.
- Histamine receptor blockers : These drugs also reduce acid production and include Tagamet®, Pepcid®, Zantac® and Axid®.
- Antibiotics: These medications kill bacteria. Doctors use them to treat H. pylori.
- Protective medications: Like a liquid bandage, these medications cover the ulcer in a protective layer to prevent further damage from digestive acids and enzymes. Doctors commonly recommend Carafate® or Pepto-Bismol®.
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Fruits Vegetables Whole Grains And Other Foods High In Fibre Can Prevent Ulcers
Add another star to fibres crown. Besides keeping you regular, fibre has a role in keeping ulcers at bay, especially those in the duodenum. A number of studies have found that people who eat high-fibre diets have a lower risk of developing ulcers. In the Physicians Health Study from Harvard, researchers looked at the diets of 47,806 men and found that those who ate 11 grams or more of fibre from vegetables had a 32 per cent lower risk of developing duodenal ulcers.
Scientists arent sure how fibre helps, but it may be thanks to the fact that it slows the emptying of the stomach and thus reduces the amount of time the stomach lining and duodenum are exposed to digestive acids. Soluble fibre, the kind found in oats, beans, barley, peas, and pears, also forms a slippery goo in the stomach that acts as a barrier between the stomach lining and corrosive stomach acids.
Recommended dose: General health guidelines suggest getting 25 to 35 grams of fibre a day.
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What Not To Eat With A Stomach Ulcer
Since stomach ulcer is a problem related to stomach, following a diet menu which can help heal stomach ulcer is advisable. However, there are certain diet restrictions for individual suffering from the stomach ulcer. These include
- High salt intake in food
- Higher Intake of fat in food should be avoided both for preventing the occurrence of stomach ulcers or any other gastrointestinal problems
- Avoiding large meals and replacing it with 5 to 6 small meals each day since the small meals would require the stomach to produce smaller quantities of stomach acids
Thus Ideally The Food items Which Should be Avoided by the Individuals Suffering from Stomach Ulcers Include
- Red Meat
- Caffeinated products such as chocolate, coffee and soft drinks
- High fat dairy products
- Spicy foods with seasonings of chili peppers, black pepper, mustard, and other strong spices
- Pre Prepared Meals
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Foods To Limit When You Have Acid Reflux And An Ulcer
Some people who have an ulcer also have acid reflux. In some people, certain foods can relax the lower part of the esophagus, known as the lower esophageal sphincter or LES. A relaxed LES makes it easier for acid to back up into the esophagus and cause heartburn, indigestion, and pain.
Foods that may make acid reflux worse include:
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Eat Blueberries If You Have Ulcers
This type of berry is rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. For that matter, it boosts your bodys immune system to fight against disease infections.
Actually, blueberries has advance health benefits including neutralizing your stomach acids and helps reduce heartburn.
Studies show that eating blueberries may help prevent the risk of developing stomach ulcers,heartburn and stomach cancer.
Plantain Can Help Prevent Ulcers
This large, green, banana-like fruit is starchy and sticky in texture. It helps to soothe inflamed and irritated mucous membranes and has some antibacterial properties to boot. Studies on rats with ulcers caused by daily aspirin use have shown that unripe green plantain can both prevent the formation of ulcers and help to heal them. Plantain works its magic best when its unripe.
Recommended dose: Until human studies determine the amount that might help, use the fruit as they do in Latin America, where green plantain is eaten boiled like a potato. Avoid fried plantain, as the fat can aggravate ulcers.
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Cabbage Can Help Prevent Ulcers
Scientists think that it may be the amino acid glutamine that gives cabbage its anti-ulcer punch. Glutamine helps to fortify the mucosal lining of the gut and to improve blood flow to the stomach, meaning it not only helps prevent ulcers but can also speed healing of existing sores.
Recommended dose: Eat two cups of raw cabbage daily. Add it to salads, coleslaw, and wraps. You can also drink raw cabbage juice, sold in health food stores. Drink a quart a day for three weeks ifyou can stand it!
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Dietary Fibre & Vitamin A
Research shows that a high fibre diet decreases the risk of developing ulcer disease. Although both insoluble and soluble fibres demonstrate this association, there is a stronger association between diets high in soluble fibre and a decreased risk for developing ulcers.
Foods that are high in soluble fibre include oats, psyllium husk, legumes, flax seeds, barley, nuts, and certain vegetables and fruits, such as oranges, apples, and carrots.
Findings from a prospective cohort study that included 47,806 men, showed that a diet rich in vitamin A from all sources might reduce the development of duodenal ulcer, as might diets high in fruits and vegetables, possibly due to their fibre content.2 A prospective cohort study follows, over time, a group of similar individuals who differ with respect to certain factors under study, to determine how these factors affect rates of a certain outcome however, more research is necessary to verify results because there are so many other factors involved with this type of study that could confound the data.
Animal studies demonstrate that vitamin A increases the production of mucus in the gastrointestinal tract. Impaired mucosal defense can allow ulcers to develop. Therefore, vitamin A may have a protective effect against the development of ulcer disease.3
Good sources of vitamin A include liver, carrots, broccoli, sweet potatoes, kale, spinach, and collard greens.
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Will Surgery Cure Your Stomach Ulcer
Most patients with peptic ulcers react well to medical treatment. Medical therapy may not work in some cases, or a person may be unable to take the medicines for different reasons.
For some people, surgery is a viable alternative to medical treatment. The following are some of the surgeries that commonly treat peptic ulcers:
When Should I See A Doctor If I Think I Have A Peptic Ulcer
- If you have burning pain in your upper stomach that is relieved by eating or taking antacids, call a health-care professional for an appointment. Don’t assume you have an ulcer. Certain other conditions can cause similar symptoms.
- If you vomit blood or have other signs of gastrointestinal bleeding, go to an emergency department right away. Peptic ulcers can cause massive bleeding, which requires blood transfusion or surgery.
- Severe abdominal pain suggests perforation or tearing of an ulcer. This is an emergency that may require surgery to fix a hole in your stomach.
- Vomiting and abdominal pain also can be a sign of an obstruction, another complication of peptic ulcers. This also may require emergency surgery.
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Eat Broccoli If You Have Ulcers
Another best natural food to eat if you have ulcers is broccoli. It contains sulforaphane, a compound that exhibits anti-H. Pylori activity.
Broccoli is also rich in soluble fiber that helps promote gut bacteria.
In fact, studies show that broccoli has advanced health benefits such as prevention of stomach cancer, promotes heart health, reduces hypertension, diabetes and boost the immune system.
It also help prevent cancer, diabetes, blood pressure, obesity, and helps in weight loss.
Are There Any Foods I Should Just Avoid
Yes. Some people with stomach ulcers also have acid reflux. Some foods cause the lower part of the esophagus, known as the lower esophageal sphincter , to become relaxed. When this happens, acids can sneak up into the esophagus and cause indigestion and heartburn.
Some foods known to do this include:
- spicy food
- acidic foods like citrus and tomatoes
Also, eating too much or eating within 23 hours of bedtime can worsen acid reflux symptoms. Netflix and chill with a pizza isnt sounding so fun anymore, is it?
Thankfully, theres lots you can do to relieve stomach ulcers and gastritis.
Here are some ways to start:
- Add those healthy foods from above. Broccoli and berries are your new besties.
- Take your vitamins and supplements, such as omega-3s and probiotics.
- Lower your stress level. Emotional stress is linked to increased inflammation flare-ups. Also, getting plenty of sleep helps to control stress.
- Quit smoking. Just dont do it. Ever. It can lead to stomach inflammation and everything else thats bad.
- Eat five or six smaller meals rather than three large ones. Smaller meals boost healing by reducing the amount of stomach acid in the stomach.
- Drink water and limit or avoid alcohol. Alcohol increases stomach inflammation.
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