How to Recover From Overeating

Nearly everyone has overindulged in good food at least once and has experienced the resulting abdominal discomfort. The pain, gas, indigestion and other symptoms often experienced after overeating can also impair your ability to focus on your work and other everyday tasks. Unfortunately, putting life on hold because you're paying the price for your indulgences isn't an option. There are several ways you can relieve the symptoms and recover from overeating.

Overeating can lead to stomach discomfort, gas and bloating. Credit: Tuned_In/iStock/Getty Images

Step 1

Eat lightly. According to the National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse, indigestion caused by overeating may be relieved by allowing your stomach to take a break from digestion. Eat several small meals throughout the day, rather than three large ones. If your indigestion is particularly bad, you may find it helpful to restrict the foods you eat to clear broth, sugar-free gelatin and citrus-free juices. These foods don't need to be heavily digested and can help your body and stomach recover from overindulgence.

Step 2

Take an over-the-counter antacid or acid reducer, available at your local pharmacy. Additionally, Mayo Clinic recommends that you reduce or refrain from taking anti-inflammatory medications, including aspirin. These medications may cause further stomach upset in individuals with sensitive digestive systems. If you are taking anti-inflammatory medications prescribed by your doctor, check with her to make sure it is safe for you to discontinue use until your indigestion subsides. Over-the-counter antacids and acid reducers may help hasten your recovery by relieving symptoms of overeating.

Step 3

Drink at least three glasses of peppermint tea daily. Peppermint helps to calm an upset stomach. Peppermint is used as a natural treatment for many different problems, including irritable bowel syndrome and bloating of the stomach caused by excess gas. Peppermint also may have antibacterial and antiviral properties, which can have a protective effect on your immunity while you recover.

Step 4

Relax and avoid sources of stress for a day or two. An upset stomach can become worse if you experience stress. Recovery is hastened by spending time resting, avoiding strenuous activity and allowing your stomach to digest the food you've eaten. If you regularly drink coffee or caffeinated beverages, reduce or eliminate them from your diet until you feel better. Smoking, too, can make an upset stomach worse, so restrict or avoid smoking until you recover.


Speak with your doctor before using any remedies. If your indigestion lasts for more than two days or you have additional symptoms such as a fever, see your doctor.

Is This an Emergency?

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.
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