What Causes A Stomach Ulcer
It is commonly said that spicy food and stress cause stomach ulcers but that is not the case at all. Stress and spicy foods can aggravate a stomach ulcer but most of the time stomach ulcers are caused by an infection caused by the bacterium Helicobacter pylori, also known as H.Pylori.
Other times ulcers are brought on by the long-term use of aspirin or anti-inflammatories such as ibuprofen and Aleve. Always use these over the counter drugs sparingly and consult your physician for alternate pain management solutions.
How Is An Ulcer Diagnosed
Your doctor will ask you about your symptoms. They may do an endoscopy. This procedure involves inserting a thin, flexible tube attached to a camera down your throat and into your stomach. Your doctor will test your blood, breath or stool for H. pylori. They also can test a sample of your stomach lining. Your doctor also will ask you if you regularly take aspirin or anti-inflammatory medicines.
When To See A Doctor
If youre having ulcer symptomssuch as stomach pain, a gnawing feeling between meals or at night, a burning sensation beneath the breastbone, or black, tarlike stoolsask your doctor to test for the presence of the Helicobacter pylori bacterium. The infection can be detected with blood or breath tests. If you test positive, your doctor will probably put you on antibiotics for 1 to 2 weeks. In about 97% of cases, the ulcer never comes back. Its common for people with ulcers to have sewer breath long before they have other symptoms. If your breath has an unusually foul odor, it could be because youre infected with the H. pylori bacterium. Call your doctor.
Read Also: Ulcerative Colitis Lower Back Pain
How Are Stomach Ulcers Treated
Ulcers can heal if they are given a rest from the factors that created them. Healthcare providers treat uncomplicated ulcers with a combination of medicines to reduce stomach acid, coat and protect the ulcer during healing and kill any bacterial infection that may be involved. Medicines may include:
- Antibiotics. If H. pylori was found in your digestive tract, your healthcare provider will prescribe some combination of antibiotics to kill the bacteria, based on your medical history and condition. Commonly prescribed antibiotics include tetracycline, metronidazole, clarithromycin and amoxicillin.
- Proton pump inhibitors . These drugs help reduce stomach acid and protect your stomach lining. PPIs include esomeprazole,dexlansoprazole,lansoprazole, omeprazole,pantoprazole and rabeprazole.
- Histamine receptor blockers . These reduce stomach acid by blocking the chemical that tells your body to produce it . H2 blockers include famotidine, cimetidine and nizatidine.
- Antacids. These common over-the-counter medicines help to neutralize stomach acid. They may bring some symptom relief, but they arent enough to heal your ulcer. They also might interfere with some antibiotics.
- Cytoprotective agents. These medicines help to coat and protect your stomach lining. They include sucralfate and misoprostol.
- Bismuth Subsalicylate. This over-the-counter medicine, commonly found as Pepto-Bismol, can help coat and protect your ulcer from stomach acid.
Characteristics Of Nutritional Therapy
The objective of peptic ulcer dietotherapy is to prevent hyper secretion of pepticchloride in order to reduce the sore and pain in the gastric and duodenal mucosa. Inaddition, nutritional therapy aims to promote healing, based on a complex sequence ofevents going from the initial trauma to the repair of the damaged tissue.Investigation of nutritional deficiencies is essential in the preparation of anappropriate recovery diet. In the early 20th century, Sippy proposed adiet based on milk and milk cream, combined with antacids, for treatment ofgastrointestinal ulcer, based on the principle that milk would provide gastricalkalinization and relieve pain. Today milk is not recommended due to the bufferingeffect and the significant gastric acid secretion effect of milk29.
According to Marrota and Floch,calories distribution for patients with peptic ulcer should be normal, with valuesranging from 50-60% of carbohydrates, 10-15% of proteins, and 25-30% of lipids, withtotal energy value sufficient to maintain or recover the nutritional status.
Recommended Reading: How To Prevent A Pressure Ulcer
How Can I Prevent A Stomach Ulcer From Occurring Or Returning
- Reduce NSAID use, if possible. Consider whether acetaminophen might substitute. If you take NSAIDs for medical reasons, talk to your doctor about reducing your dosage or switching your medication. Your doctor may also prescribe another medicine to take with NSAIDs to protect your stomach lining.
- Reduce other irritants that may contribute to too much stomach acid or erode your stomach lining, including smoking and alcohol use.
- Take an H. pylori breath test to find out if you have an overgrowth of the bacteria.
Home Remedies For Peptic Ulcers
Fenugreek leaves contain compounds that can heal the ulcer. Boil 1 cup of fenugreek leaves and add a pinch of salt to it. Drink this twice a day.
Drinking raw cabbage juice is very effective for treating stomach ulcer. Consume fresh cabbage juice daily before your bedtime. This will help strengthen the stomach lining and heal the ulcer.
Bananas contain an antibacterial substance that help slow down the growth of ulcer in the stomach. Hence eat a banana every day after your breakfast.
Honey has natural healing properties that work wonders for treating stomach ulcer. Take a tablespoon of honey daily before your breakfast or have it any time of the day with food like wheat bread. This will help reduce stomach inflammation and keep away other stomach diseases.
A clove of garlic is highly recommended for stomach ulcer. Eat 2- 3 cloves of garlic a day during your daily meals to ease the inflammation in the stomach.
Powder the bark of the slippery elm and add to a cup of warm water, mix well and drink the mixture three times a day. The bark of slippery elm has been used to soothe the mucus membranes that line the stomach and the duodenum.
Coconut oil has been used widely as a natural ingredient for treating various disturbances in the stomach. It has an anti-bacterial property that kills bacteria that cause ulcers.
You May Like: Why Do I Have Ulcerative Colitis
How Bad Are Soft Drinks
According to a January 2015 review in the journal BioMed Research International, soft drinks may include ingredients you might not want to consume even if you dont have an ulcer, such as caffeine sugar or other sweeteners artificial coloring preservatives and flavorings like phosphoric acid.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns that sugar-sweetened beverages in general are a major cause of the overabundance of sugar in the American diet. These drinks have been linked to tooth decay, obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, liver disease, gout and arthritis.
A safe drink to reduce stomach acid symptoms is one you can make at home, Rubman says. Add ½ teaspoon of baking soda to 4 or 5 ounces of water and sip slowly. Baking soda is sodium bicarbonate, which strengthens the mucosal barrier in the stomach.
Bottom line: Avoid soft drinks if you have an ulcer.
Read Also: How Do They Check For Ulcers
Foods To Eat With A Peptic Ulcer
A bland diet is generally your best bet when dealing with a peptic ulcer. These foods are low in acidity, saturated fats, and spiciness.
Another rule of thumb is to choose foods that are high in dietary fiber, both soluble and insoluble. Studies have shown that fiber-rich diets reduce the risk of peptic ulcers by lowering stomach acids. Foods that are rich in vitamin A have similar effects.
Foods that are probiotic can speed healing by blocking H. pylori from attaching to the lining of the stomach. Probiotic-rich foods include pickled vegetables as well as certain fermented dairy products like yogurt and kefir.
Foods rich in flavonoids are also believed to inhibit the growth of H. pylori in the gut. These plant-based nutrients are found in berries and many other fruits and vegetables.
Among the foods you can eat if you have a peptic ulcer are:
- Bean and legumes, which are fiber-rich
- Eggs, which are rich in vitamin A
- Fish, including fatty fish that are rich in omega-3 polyunsaturated fats
- Fiber-rich fruits, like apples, bananas, strawberries, and raspberries
- Flavonoid-rich foods, like cranberries, kale, broccoli, celery, and all berries
- Leafy green vegetables, which are rich in vitamin A
- Orange and yellow vegetables, like sweet potatoes and summer squash that are also rich in vitamin A
- Pickled foods, like kimchi, sauerkraut, and dill pickles
- Lean meats and poultry
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 .
Read Also: Nasal Cannula Pressure Ulcer Prevention
The Peptic Ulcer Diet
There is a specialised diet, or rather, eating guidelines, that will significantly increase your ulcers rate of healing. When this diet is followed, it will limit the foods that will irritate the ulcer as certain foods can aggravate the symptoms and result in bloating, heartburn, stomach pain and indigestion.
It is vital that you stick to this eating plan as anything that aggravates your ulcer will only make your symptoms worse and your healing process longer. You may also be putting yourself at risk of other complications developing such as the peptic ulcer bleeding should you not adhere to these recommendations.
Please note that this eating plan is not a means of treatment, but rather a way to promote the healing of your ulcer. You will need to still have your ulcer diagnosed and treated by your doctor and stick to the treatment therapy accordingly in order to ensure that you undergo a full recovery.
The following can also be used for those who suffer from gastritis.
Read Also: What Is Good For Ulcers
Why Are The Best Foods For An Ulcer Important To Know
While there are some foods that can help with an ulcer, this post will also cover the foods to avoid if you have an ulcer. What you do eat is just as important as what you dont eat. Food sensitivities and/or allergies can be harmful to the digestive tract and trigger an ulcer causing painful acid reflux. Its for this reason that a lot of people who have ulcers have success with the certain elimination diets. If you are having ongoing digestive issues, I always recommend writing a food journal as well as starting an elimination diet to help you rule out any sensitive foods. This list is also a great place to start.
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.
Also Check: Foam Dressings For Pressure Ulcer Prevention
If Food Isnt The Culprit How Did We Get Here
Say hello to Helicobacter pylori , the bacteria best known for causing stomach ulcers and gastritis .
Gastritis occurs when the stomach lining weakens, allowing stomach acid to seep in and create a burning sensation, typically felt in the middle part of your stomach and chest.
Whats more, salty and fatty foods can actually alter the cells in your stomach, increasing the likeliness of an H. pylori infection. Adios potato chips!
No taco shaming!
While a specific diet wont cause stomach ulcers, research shows that certain foods may help your body fight off that ulcer-causing H. pylori.
The best preventative defense against H. pylori includes *wait for it* fruits, veggies, and probiotics. Shocking, we know. They help protect your gut, fight bacteria, strengthen your immune system, and more.
Add these to your shopping list:
Read Also: How To Cure Peptic Ulcer Disease
What Foods And Beverages Should Be Avoided Or Limited
It is best to avoid any spicy, acidic or high-fat foods. It is suggested that you learn to identify what foods have the worst impact on your peptic ulcer symptoms, everyone is affected by food differently. The foods to avoid pertain to the ones that result in the over-production of stomach acid which can interfere with the healing of the ulcer and irritate the lining of the digestive tract.
The following foods may aggravate the symptoms of an ulcer:
- Chocolate milk and full-fat milk
- Hot chocolate
- Dairy foods that have been made from cream or full-fat milk
- Strongly flavoured or spicy cheeses that contain black pepper or jalapenos
- High-fat meats that are highly seasoned such as ham, cold cuts, bacon and sausage
- Peppers and chillies
- Sugar highly refined sugars found in foods create a harsh environment in the stomach as they are difficult to digest
- Tomatoes – any tomato products such as tomato paste, tomato sauce or tomato juice
- Highly processed carbs such as white bread, cakes, cookies and doughnuts.
- Fried foods such as French fries, potato chips, onion rings.
- Red meat This contains a high amount of protein and takes a longer time to digest, therefore resulting in more stomach acid. Red meat also contains more fat than white meat, this also requires more stomach acid for digestion.
- Chewing gum This causes a build-up of stomach acid as the body detects the saliva in the mouth and chewing as actual food and prepares itself to digest it.
You May Like: Foods That Heal Ulcers And Gastritis
What Causes Ulcers
Doctors used to think that certain foods could give you ulcers. But now we know other things cause them, like taking pain-relieving drugs for a long time or infection with bacteria called H. pylori.Although food doesnât cause or treat ulcers, some can make your pain worse, while others may help you heal faster.
Why Change My Diet
There are so many benefits to changing your diet if you suffer from stomach ulcers that it would be foolish not to. When you follow a diet that primates healthy stomach and gut health you will:
- Obtain the protein and nutrients that your body needs to repair itself.
- Help you to remove all foods that are aggravating the small intestine and stomach lining.
- It can help to minimize or control the symptoms of related conditions like bacterial infections, Crohns disease, or celiac. These can aggravate ulcer symptoms.
- Help to fill in any contributing nutritional deficiencies.
Certain foods help to repair the gastrointestinal lining that erodes form long term use of anti-inflammatory drugs or bacterial infection.
Also Check: Ulcerative Colitis Blood In Urine
Foods To Avoid On A Gastritis Diet
Foods that are high in fat may worsen inflammation in the lining of the stomach.
For some people, food allergies can trigger gastritis. In these cases, identifying and avoiding these foods may treat and prevent the condition.
Some forms of gastritis are caused by drinking alcohol too often or drinking too much in a short period.
Foods that may irritate the stomach and make gastritis worse include:
- acidic foods, such as tomatoes and some fruits
- spicy foods
If you notice that a certain food or food group makes your symptoms worse, avoiding this food can prevent symptoms. This is particularly true when it comes to food allergies.
Why Do Mouth Ulcers Come
Mouth ulcers are one of the most common skin conditions and can be a sign of a host of different conditions, including life-threatening ones like cancer.
They are also often the result of some type of oral allergy, so if you are having problems with your mouth, it may be worth investigating.
Mouth Ulcers are one of the unpleasant side effects of the common cold, but they are not caused by cold viruses. These sores in the mouth occur when the skin lining of the mouth, or mucosa, becomes inflamed.
These membranes are the thin membranes that line the inside of the mouth. They also contain glands that help keep the mouth moist. Mouth ulcers affect the skin in the mouth area, and they can cause pain, itching, and a burning sensation.
There are a number of things that could cause mouth ulcers, but they all have one thing in common: they cause the tissue that lines the inside of your mouth to become inflamed and irritated.
This can be caused by many different things. Here are a few of the most likely causes: Stress, Infections, Vitamin Deficiencies, Food Allergies, Mouth Breathing, and Bad Lifestyle Habits.
Don’t Miss: Can Ulcerative Colitis Cause Blood In Urine
What About Complicated Ulcers
While most ulcers are successfully treated with medication, some complicated ulcers may require surgery. Ulcers that are bleeding, or that have perforated your stomach or intestinal wall, will need to be surgically repaired. An ulcer that is malignant, or obstructing a passageway, will need to be surgically removed. In severe cases, an ulcer that keeps coming back may be treated by surgery to cut off some of the nerve supply to the stomach that produces stomach acid.
Limit Eating Too Much Chocolate
Chocolate is one of the types of foods to avoid with ulcers . It may increase your chances of developing ulcers or worsen your ulcer condition.
Actually, eating chocolate boosts the secretion of stomach acids this weakens the lining wall of the digestive tract, increasing the discomfort. It can also lead to heartburn.
For that reason, it is good to always limit the consumption of chocolate if you have ulcers.
Recommended Reading: Holistic Medicine For Ulcerative Colitis