Whether you're gassy, constipated, nauseous, or have indigestion, try these home remedies to make an upset stomach feel better naturally. Stomachaches are so common that everyone experiences them at one point or another. There are dozens of reasons why you might get a tummy ache. Most causes aren’t serious and the symptoms pass quickly. Generally, there’s no need to look further than your kitchen for a solution.
Natural Remedy for Upset Stomach – Raw Honey
Raw honey contains the enzymes diastase, invertase, catalase, glucose oxidase, acid phosphatase and inulase, which aid in digestion and assimilation. (See raw honey enzymes for more details.) Honey has also been found to be effective against E. coli and Candida albicans. Take a spoonful on its own for indigestion, or combined with your ACV drink. (Remember – raw honey will have the most active enzymes).
Natural Remedy for Upset Stomach – Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
When it comes to home remedies, apple cider vinegar has got to be near the top of the list as a “go to” for just about everything. For indigestion, most folks put a shot of ACV (roughly 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon) in a glass of room temperature water and drink it down. Some add a bit of honey to mellow the flavor. As we age, most of us produce less stomach acid, which bogs down digestion. A little extra acid helps get things moving again.
Natural Remedy for Upset Stomach – Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal is more likely to be effective for extracting problem substances than treating general upset stomach. Within hours of consuming the problem food, Health Guidance.org recommends keeping some activated charcoal on hand so that “it can be consumed in the scenario that a family member should ingest something potentially poisonous such as a medicine overdose, a household cleaner, gone off food, sedatives or narcotics. This will then reduce the body's absorption by up to 60% which could save their life. ” It should be consumed with plenty of water because it may cause dehydration, and should not be mixed with something like chocolate milk or syrup.
Natural Remedy for Upset Stomach – Papaya
Papaya fruit or papaya enzyme capsules are both effective at assisting with digestion. Papaya contains the enzymes papain and chymopapain, which are similar to digestive enzymes. Papain is used in many commercial meat tenderizers because it helps break down proteins. Enjoy some fresh papaya or take some papaya enzymes capsules, but don't expect the same results from dried papaya. The World's Healthiest Foods indicates that dried papaya is likely to be low on enzymes, which are heat sensitive. Look for organic papaya, as much of the papaya crop (roughly 80%) of the papaya crop is genetically modified.
Natural Remedy for Upset Stomach – Live Culture Foods/ Probiotics
If I end up eating a less than stellar meal that does not sit well, the first thing I do is grab for a bottle of kombucha when I get home. Kombucha is a live culture food, which means it that contains friendly bacteria that help your body do its job. Milk kefir, water kefir, yogurt, kraut, kimchi or any fermented food will act to boost the populations of good microorganisms in your digestive tract. These are also very good to consume with a meal to avoid indigestion in the first place.
Natural Remedy for Upset Stomach – Baking Soda
For a sour stomach, add one half to one teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) to a glass of water, mix well and drink it down. Best for occasional use only, this fizzy drink can bring on a burp that may ease stomach pressure and will reduce acidity in the stomach. Caution: Do not use baking soda if your stomach upset is due to excessive overeating, as there has been at least one incidence of a man's stomach exploding from taking baking soda on a stunningly full stomach.
Natural Remedy for Upset Stomach – Herbal Teas
Peppermint tea was my “go to” drink for pregnancy nausea, and I still find it soothing for mild stomach upset. Other herbal teas recommended for upset stomach include chamomile, catnip, cinnamon, fennel, ginger, green, lemon balm, licorice, sage, valerian and yarrow. (Read more at “My Indigestion Remedies“.) In a pinch, if you don't have tea handy, strong mints (like Altoids) may have a similar effect.
Natural Remedy for Upset Stomach – Spices
Cardamom, coriander, fennel, ginger, fenugreek, caraway and other herbs have a history of use as digestive aids. Simply chew a few seeds or nibble some candied ginger to help relieve nausea, soothe intestinal spasms and help you flatulate. (Better out than in, after all.)