Stomach ulcer, also called peptic ulcer, are painful sores that cause small holes or breaks in the inner lining of the duodenum (the upper part of the small intestine) or stomach. When they occur in the duodenal, they are called duodenal ulcer and when found in stomach, they are called stomach or gastric ulcer.
These sores can range from ¼ inch to ¾ inch. In some unusual cases they can be as large as 1-2 inches. The hydrochloric acid, which is a component of gastric juice, is produced by the stomach lining which aids in digestion. But when the acid is produced in excess amount (more then normal), it starts damaging the cells that are lining the stomach; this causes an ulcer.
Causes of Ulcers
No definite cause has been found for the occurrence of ulcers. There can be a number of reasons for the formation of ulcers like too much consumption of faulty diets like spicy, fried and processed foods, nicotine, alcohol or stress. Some other reasons that can cause stomach ulcers include infection with bacteria known as helicobacter Pylori, excessive use of painkillers (NSAIDs) like aspirin and naproxen or excessive acid production.
Symptoms of an Ulcer
An ulcer may not always produce symptoms. But when symptoms occur, a person can feel burning pain in his/her upper or middle stomach, most often at night or between meals, bloating, nausea or vomiting, indigestion and heartburn.
In some severe cases, where ulcers are too deep, the patient can vomit blood or blood can pass through the stool. Patient can feel dizzy, weak, keep on losing weight and experience non-stop pain that doesn’t go away even after taking medications. Not only men and women, but children can also get affected by stomach ulcer.
Home Remedy for Ulcer
In conventional treatment, antibiotics are prescribed to relieve patient from pain and other symptoms. But often they cause severe side effects. There are many home remedies that can soothe the stomach and relieve the patient from pain and suffering by repairing and energizing the body and preparing it to heal itself.
Drink Plenty of Water
Drink as much water as you can to dilute the acid in the stomach and restrict it from damaging the intestine further. But stay away from drinking carbonated water and cold drinks completely.
The home remedy for stomach ulcer focuses on protecting and strengthening the stomach lining against stomach acid. Vegetable juices are very beneficial for curing ulcer. Cabbage juice is considered to be the best remedy for this purpose. Drinking fresh cabbage juice produces amino acid that helps to increase the blood flow to the lining of the stomach.
Studies reveal that by strengthening the stomach lining, cabbage juice will help to heal the ulcer within ten days. Carrot juice is also known to produce the same kind of effect and aid in curing ulcer when taken in combination with beetroot, cucumber and spinach juice.
Bananas contain an antibacterial property that can inhibit the growth of ulcer causing bacteria H pylori. Eating bananas can help to neutralize the acid produced by gastric juices in the stomach.
It can build a barrier between the stomach lining and the digestive acids and reduce inflammation by strengthening the stomach lining.
Raw honey is another great home remedy for ulcer because of its potent healing properties. When taken regularly, it can kill bacteria and protect and strengthen the lining of the stomach and also reduce inflammation.
Fruits containing vitamin A like peaches, plum, oranges, watermelons and blackberries are beneficial for curing ulcer as they strengthen the mucus membrane.
Fenugreek Seeds and Leaves
Soak 2-3 tbsp of fenugreek seeds in water overnight. Bring them to a boil to make a thick solution and take twice or thrice a day. You can also brew fenugreek leaves. Fenugreek contains a mucilaginous compound that coats and soothes the stomach lining and prevents further damage. This results in curing of the ulcer.
Drinking cold milk, especially raw goat milk, without sugar is a popular and effective home remedy for curing ulcer. Cold milk helps to restrict acid formation and brings relief from the burning sensation that most ulcer patients experience by soothing the stomach.
Drinking almond juice daily can help to bind the acid produced in stomach and also protect the stomach lining.
For fighting the bacteria and reducing inflammation, herbs like goldenseal root and slipper elm are highly beneficial.
Drinking chamomile or dandelion tea is a very effective remedy for ulcer. Drinking this tea twice or thrice a day will not only clean the digestive system but also kill the bacteria that causes ulcer.
Diet Treatments For Ulcers
The best remedy for stomach ulcer is following a proper diet. A fiber-rich diet protects the stomach lining. A stomach ulcer diet should include legumes, fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Eat steamed, boiled foods and avoid spicy, fried and processed foods. Also avoid drinking tea and coffee. Stay away from eating junk foods and packaged foods as they contain preservatives and can aggravate the symptoms.
People with deficiency of vitamin K are susceptible to development of ulcers. Consuming foods rich in vitamin K is very beneficial for stopping the bleeding and speeding up the healing process. The food sources that are rich in vitamin K are egg yolks, tomatoes, cheese, liver and green-leafy vegetables.
Besides applying these home remedies, special attention should be given to your diet. Eat small meals to minimize production of excess digestive acid, but eat frequent meals to prevent these acids from attacking the stomach lining. Avoid consumption of hot, spicy and fried food. Also stay away from eating non-vegetarian food till your ulcer heals completely as these foods demand an extra effort to digest.
Smoking and drinking alcohol should be strictly prohibited as it can aggravate the symptoms. Hot beverages like tea, coffee and even hot milk should not be consumed. Reduce stress by using relaxation techniques like yoga, meditation, and acupressure. Yoga asana can help to repair and strengthen the stomach lining and improve your overall health.