Much of the world's population is infected with H. pylori, the bacteria responsible for most ulcers and many cases of gastritis, or stomach inflammation, according to the National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse.
Video of the Day
Treatment involves antibiotics, which are most effective if you have H. pylori and an ulcer. Although they aren't a "cure all," certain foods may help minimize your symptoms. For best results, seek guidance from your doctor or dietitian before changing your diet.
Fruits are rich sources of antioxidants, which support your body's ability to resist and heal from infections, and fiber, which may help ease ulcer pain. A high-fiber diet may also reduce gastritis symptoms.
Particularly fiber-rich varieties include raspberries, pears and prunes. Cranberries and apples contain flavonoids -- chemicals that may stop H. pylori from growing. Cranberry juice, although lower in fiber than whole fruits, is also rich in flavonoids.
Vegetables, like artichokes, peas, broccoli, spinach and sweet potatoes, also provide ample fiber and rich amounts of antioxidants. If you have gastritis related to H. pylori, the University of Maryland Medical Center suggests consuming garlic, celery and onions, which are valuable flavonoid sources. Avoid high-fat vegetables such as french fries and vegetables prepared in rich, creamy sauces; high-fat foods can worsen gastritis pain.
Because whole grains contain all parts of the grain, they supply more antioxidants and fiber compared to refined grains. Nutritious whole-grain food options include oats, barley, brown rice, wild rice, air-popped popcorn and 100 percent whole-grain breads, pastas and cold cereals.
For maximum benefits, ChooseMyPlate.gov suggests purchasing breads that display a "100 percent whole grain" label or list whole grains, rather than enriched or refined grains, as top ingredients.
Lean Protein-Rich Foods
Fatty foods delay stomach emptying, increasing your risk for gastritis pain and inflammation. To avoid these risks, choose lean protein-rich foods such as low-fat dairy products, lean meats, fish, beans and lentils, instead of high-fat meats and cheeses. For heightened benefits when preparing meats and fish, use low-fat cooking methods like baking, broiling, poaching and grilling.