Monday, August 9, 2010

Gastritis do's and don'ts

fried & grilled chickenImage by Sheree K via Flickr
Summer time and the living is easy, or at least it's supposed to be. Think summer and you imagine things such as:  barbecues, parties, fourth of July and Labor Day cookouts. Everyone's appetite is spiked by barbecue grilled chicken, sausage and peppers, spicy and hot barbecue ribs; digestive juices  really begin to flow.  But, unfortunately, with summer eating comes summer pain  indigestion,  and  gastritis.  What is gastritis and what can you do to help the problem?

What is gastritis?

Gastritis is an inflammation of the lining of the stomach. Chronic gastritis can lead into ulceration (ulcers).  Gastritis can be either acute - short period of time, or chronic - long period of time.

What Causes Gastritis?

There are mucous membrances in the stomach that produce mucus that coat the walls to protect it from the powerful hydrochloric acid.  In gastritis, this protective mucus layer becomes inflamed leaving it vulnerable to the acid that is present in the stomach.

Gastritis may be caused by excess of foods such as spices, alcohol, coffee, tea and  medications.  It can also be caused by viral, fungal or parasite infections.  Gastritis may also be caused by autoimmune diseases and stomach cancer.

What are the Symptoms of Gastritis?

Gastritis causes stomach discomfort, excessive gas due to the indigestion and acid.  Nausea, vomitng and bloating may also be present.

Natural treatments

Lasting cures for gastritis means making dietary and lifestule changes.  Avoiding foods such as condiments, rich foods, artificial colors, high fat foods.  The patient should eat a diet rich in vegetables and fruits such as watermelon, potatoes, peaches and grapes several times a day. Treatment for gastritis includes being aware of the problematic foods and avoiding them. Abundant water is importantn - at least 64 ounces or more daily.
Plenty of exercise is also vital as digestion is greatly strenthened.  Exercise also stimulates peristalsis - the powerful contractions that occur when bowels are evacuated.

Some old times remedies include:

1. 1/2 cup of raw potato juice 3x/day 30 minutes before meals.
2. Cloves and ginger.
3. Spearmint or peppermint tea.
4. Coconut water - three to four glasses a day.

Gastritis is defined as inflammation of the stomach.

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