Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS)
Gastritis / acidity part -2
Simple ways to manage gastritis / acidity
Gastritis/ acidity is usually mild and can be cured easily by following better food habits and regular healthy lifestyle. However, sometime gastritis can cause pain in the upper part of the abdomen and may lead to stomach ulcers. Few over-the-counter (otc) antacid medicines and a set of do's and don'ts can relieve gastritis. Some of the lifestyle and dietary changes are as follows:
Lifestyle / dietary changes:
Excess spicy food and use of painkillers, alcohol, cigarettes and acidic beverages lead to symptoms of gastritis. To get rid of symptoms of gastritis, one should follow these simple remedies.
Small meals: eat food in smaller quantity and switch to several small meals.
Avoid painkillers: painkillers lead to ulcers in your stomach and cause bleeding. So, avoid unnecessary use of painkillers.
Yoga and physical exercise: kapalabhati, bhastrika and anulomaviloma yoga increases movement of body and organs, helpful in the treatment of gastritis.
Foods to be taken:
A healthy meal plan with low unhealthy fat, salt, and added sugar helps in relieving gastritis. Eat fruits, vegetables, whole grains and fat-free or low-fat dairy foods. Lean meats, poultry (chicken and turkey), fish, beans, eggs, and nuts are also advised to gastritis patients.
Fruits: fruits contain vitamins, minerals, fibers and antioxidants should be the part of the diet plan.
Rice gruel: rice gruel helps in the formation of watery gastric juice and reduces the acidity level within the stomach. Only rice that has been aged for one year must be used. Wheat and barley are beneficial.
Vegetables: garlic and onion limit the growth of bacteria. Carrot juice, spinach juice, pumpkin, bitter gourd (kaakarakaya), cucumber (dosakaya), and green banana are effective. Broccoli is effective against h. Pylori bacteria in the stomach lining.
Dairy products: the calcium and vitamin d in milk reduce the stomach acids and gives relief to the stomach but, it should be with low content fat.
Grains: whole wheat chapattis, pasta, noodles made from whole grains should be included in the diet. Refined flour (maida) products should be strictly avoided. Limit the consumption of whole grain chapattis to about 2 chapattis, per day.
Green coconut water: drink green coconut water, as it provides the stomach with the necessary rest, vitamins, and minerals which provide an excellent and easy remedy for gastritis.
Foods to be avoided:
Several foods produce a large amount of acid in your stomach leading to gastritis. You should avoid intake of such foodstuffs in your diet:
- salty and spicy foods.
- vinegar and vinegar based food items.
- aerated drinks, citrus juices, caffeine.
- high fat/cholesterol contained food items.
- beef, fried fish, and pork.
- baked products like cookies, cakes, chocolates.
Medical therapies/ options:
Several allopathic medicines are used for the treatment of gastritis, but their prolonged use can lead to problems like weak bones, constipation, vomiting. Antibiotics are used to kill h. Pylori bacteria, which causes ulcers and gastritis in your digestive tract. Antacids normalize acid production by blocking the action of the parts of cells that produce acids. Ulcer healing agents protect the tissues that line your stomach and small intestine. Besides these, surgery is preferred in complicated cases of gastritis like pus or mucous filled infections in stomach and intestines.
Ayurvedic and herbal therapies:
In Ayurveda, gastritis is known as urdhavaga amalapitta. It is caused in people who have pitta dosha, which means disturbance in the digestion of food leading to indigestion. When the pitta dosha gets increased in such people, there are greater chances of getting gastritis. Ayurvedic preparations like dhaatriloha, sukumaraghrita, sootashekhara rasa, kaamadudha rasa, leela vilas rasa, chandrakala rasa, amalakichoorna, triphalachoornaand amalapittantaka rasa are beneficial in gastritis. If there is constipation along with gastritis, then avipattikarachoorna is taken as the medicine of choice.
Few herbs that are beneficial for gastritis patients are
Cardamom (ilaayachee): soothes the stomach. It is especially beneficial if the gastritis causes heartburn.
Fennel (sauph): is digestive, traditionally used by Indians. Fennel gives the soothing effect to the stomach, facilitates digestion, reduces flatulence and relieves the stomach of excess acidity.
Ginger (adrakh): it is effective in treating indigestion that is associated with gastritis. It is especially useful for people who consume more of a non-vegetarian food.
Amla: is very beneficial in the treatment of several stomach ailments including gastritis.
Sandalwood (chandan): helps in gastritis because it has cooling properties. It can soothe the stomach muscles inflamed by gastritis.
Asparagus: it's roots are effective in reducing the hyperacidity of the digestive system.
Licorice (mulethi) root powder: the root of the licorice soothes the injury of the stomach and also reduces the h pylori.
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Related Tip: What Causes Acidity? Understanding its Symptoms and Causes