We know that the digestive system is very important part of our bodies and digestive problems can cause a lot of discomfort. The primary functions of digestive system are to help your body to absorb the essential nutrients and to rid of the waste products. There was one study in which was said that about 60 – 70 million Americans suffer from some kind of digestive problem. The most common digestive problems are IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), celiac disease, IBD (inflammatory bowel disease), diverticulitis, food intolerance, lactose intolerance, peptic ulcers, acid reflux, constipation, diarrhea, heartburn, gas, bloating and indigestion. The causes of digestive problems can vary but the most common factors are nutritional deficiencies, lack of sleep, stress, and excessive alcohol intake, excessive smoking, and dehydration, lack of exercise, improper hygiene and poor diet. There are different types of digestive problems and this is a reason why proper diagnosis and treatment is needed. You can use some simple home remedies to treat some common digestive issues, such as bloating, diarrhea, constipation and indigestion. But the serious digestive problems need a help from specialist.
Home remedies for common digestive problems
Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar is a very effective ingredient that will keep your digestive system in good health. It is acidic in nature but it has alkalizing effect in your body. This can help to improve digestion and to treat problems like heartburn, stomachaches, bloating, gas and indigestion. Also it has pectin which is water – soluble fiber that will regulate the bowel movements. You should add one tablespoon of raw and unfiltered apple cider vinegar to one cup of warm water. You should mix in a little raw honey. You should drink this home remedy two to three times per day because it will help you to maintain healthy digestive system.
Asafetida: Asafetida is a potent – smelling spice which is good for our digestive health because it has antiflatulent, antioxidant, anti – inflammatory and antispasmodic properties. It is very effective in treating food poisoning, stomach pain, upset stomach, flatulence and gas. Also this could be a very effective home remedy for treating colic pain in small babies. If you want to improve your digestion, you should mix a pinch of asafetida in one glass of warm water and drink it after your meals. Also you can include this spice in your daily cooking. If you have a small baby, then you can rub a little asafetida mixed with water around the navel to reduce the gas and stomach pain.
Natural treatments for digestive problems
Fennel seeds: They can also support the health of your digestive system. You can use it to treat low stomach acidity, indigestion and heartburn. These seeds can also give a relief from bloating and intestinal spasms that are commonly associated with IBS. There was one study done in 2003 in which was shown that fennel seed oil (emulsion) can help to decrease the intensity of infantile colic. You should chew one teaspoon of fennel seeds after eating your meals because this will aid digestion. If you want to treat indigestion, then you should drink fennel tea or you can take ½ teaspoon of fennel seed powder along with one glass of water, 2 times per day. To make the fennel tea, you should steep one teaspoon of crushed fennel seeds in one cup of hot water for about five minutes.
Peppermint: This herb can aid digestion and it can prevent digestive disorders. It has anti – inflammatory, antispasmodic and carminative properties which can help to treat intestinal cramps, bloating, gas as well as vomiting and nausea. It can help to calm an upset digestive system and accelerate healing. There was one study in 2007 in which was suggested that this home remedy can help to improve abdominal symptoms in people who suffer from IBS. It can even treat similar symptoms of celiac disease or lactose intolerance. You should drink peppermint tea once or twice per day. If you want to make the peppermint tea, you should add one teaspoon of dried peppermint leaves to one cup of hot water. Cover it and steep it for ten minutes. Strain it and drink it. You can eat fresh peppermint leaves on a daily basis by sprinkling them over your dishes or add them to your salads. There is another option and that is to take enteric – coated peppermint oil capsules, three or four times per day in a period of few weeks.
Probiotic foods: These foods can keep your digestive system healthy and functioning efficiently. Probiotics have strains of Bifidobacteria (good bacteria) and Lactobacillus which can help to restore the natural balance of your gut bacteria. Also they can help to treat and prevent digestive problems like IBD, flatulence, abdominal bloating and diarrhea. There was one study in 2010 in which were shown the effectiveness of the probiotics, as either a single strain or a combination of probiotics which can help in the natural treatment of several digestive issues. Some of the best probiotic foods which you should include in your diet are sour pickles, buttermilk, tempeh, sauerkraut, miso, kefir and Greek yogurt. Also you can take probiotic supplements but firstly talk with your doctor for the correct dosage.
Ginger: You must include ginger in your diet because it can improve digestion and prevent digestive problems. It can stimulate digestive juices and the flow of enzymes is needed for the properly digest food. It is very effective in preventing and reducing diarrhea, bloating, indigestion, flatulence, vomiting and nausea. It has carminative, anti – inflammatory, antiviral and antibacterial properties which can help to prevent digestive problems. You should drink two to three cups of ginger tea on a daily basis. To make the ginger tea, you should boil one teaspoon of freshly grated ginger in 1½ cup of hot water. Let it simmer for ten minutes. Strain out the ginger and add some raw honey. Enjoy in this tea. Also you can add two teaspoons of ginger juice and one teaspoon of honey to one cup of warm water. Drink this home remedy once or twice a day. You should chew a small piece of ginger after your meals because this can improve the digestion.
Aloe Vera: This home remedy has powerful laxative properties which can support the proper functioning of the digestive system. Also it has compounds known as polysaccharides which can help to treat different digestive disorders in which are included stomach ulcers. Aloe Vera has antifungal, antibacterial, antiviral and anti – inflammatory properties which can help to soothe inflammation and irritation in the digestive tract. You should add two tablespoons of Aloe Vera gel to one cup of orange juice or water. Blend it in a blender. You should drink it every morning on an empty stomach. If you are breastfeeding or pregnant, then you should not consume Aloe Vera.
Psyllium husk: This herb is also known as isabgol. It can help to promote regularity and overall digestive health. This is a natural laxative that has isoluble fiber which can add bulk to your stool and make the bowel movements easier. Also it can prevent flatulence, gas and constipation. You should thoroughly mix ½ to 1 teaspoon of psyllium husk in one glass of warm water or milk. Drink it before you go to bed. You should repeat it on a daily basis because it will help you to have smooth bowel movements.
Oatmeal: This home remedy can promote intestinal health due to its high fiber content. Fiber can help to maintain bowel regularity and prevents constipation. Also it can reduce symptoms like nausea and heartburn that are associated with GERD. Also it is a bland, low – fat food which is easy to digest. This means that you can enjoy in it even when you suffer from diarrhea. You should start your day with a bowl of oatmeal because it will help you to have healthy digestive system. Also you can add nuts and fruits to enhance its nutritional value. Also you can try oatmeal cookies and oat flour because this will help you to improve your digestion.
Turmeric: This herb is very commonly used as a natural treatment for digestive disorders. Curcumin which is active component in it can stimulate the gallbladder to release bile. This will aid digestion and it can improve the liver function. Also it has anti – inflammatory properties that will reduce the inflammation in gastrointestinal tract. You can use turmeric as your natural treatment for several digestive disorders such as GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, IBS, peptic ulcers and dyspepsia. You should drink ½ teaspoon of turmeric juice with a glass of water on a daily basis because it can prevent digestive problems. You can add raw turmeric in your regular cooking.