If you're up for a good challenge, try identifying the foods to avoid when you have a stomach ulcer. Although general guidelines exist, your physician knows your body best, so she (or he) can provide nutritional guidance that meets your needs.
Avoid These Foods With a Stomach Ulcer
To minimize your stomach ulcer discomfort, try consuming smaller meals, and eat more often throughout the day. Some patients have experienced ulcer symptom improvement after this eating pattern change. In addition, note these foods to avoid when you have a stomach ulcer (along with alcoholic beverages), as they can make your ulcer symptoms worse.
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First, limit (or stop) your milk consumption, as large quantities of this beverage can lead to more stomach acid generation. If you banish dairy completely, ask your doctor about taking a calcium supplement. Stop drinking caffeine-based beverages, such as coffee, hot cocoa, tea and caffeinated sodas.
Decaffeinated tea and coffee can make your ulcer symptoms worse, so take these beverages off your list of foods to eat when you have a stomach ulcer. Onions, garlic and peppery spices won't stop your ulcer from healing, but these foods can lead to unpleasant heartburn.
How to Calm an Ulcer Attack
Understanding stomach (or peptic) ulcers is key to following treatment protocols that will provide relief. First, realize that peptic ulcers have two common causes. Taking over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (or NSAIDs) has been associated with stomach ulcer development.
Ulcers are also caused by the troublesome Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) bacteria. Both culprits essentially attack your stomach's mucus-like protective layer, often causing pain and discomfort.
First, don't ignore the problem, as putting off stomach ulcer treatment can lead to serious complications. Schedule an appointment with your physician, who will likely prescribe a medication that decreases your stomach acid. If the H. pylori bacteria has taken up residence in your gut, you'll also need a course of antibiotics. Stop using the NSAIDs, as they only aggravate the issue and can increase the likelihood that your ulcer will return after treatment.
Naturally, you want your stomach ulcer to heal as quickly as possible. By limiting your alcohol consumption and quitting smoking entirely, you'll set the stage for positive results. However, remember that even if your symptoms subside, the ulcer can reappear and require additional treatment.
How to Ease Stomach Ulcer Pain
Stomach ulcer pain is no joke, and you'll do everything you can to alleviate the discomfort and feel better. To get some relief, place vegetables, fruits and whole grains on your stomach ulcer diet menu.
Add foods that contain probiotics, such as yogurt, miso and aged cheeses. Because milk consumption can lead to excess stomach acid production, ask your physician if milk is one of the foods to avoid when you have a stomach ulcer.
Because stress can aggravate your peptic ulcer symptoms, pinpoint ways you can knock down your stress level. Delegate some responsibilities at work or home, treat yourself to some form of daily exercise and spend time with people who are important to you.
Adequate sleep is another stress-fighting tool, and getting some extra rest will also support your immune system. So, turn off your devices (and the TV), and ensure that you're getting plenty of sleep every night. If you don't nosh on your favorite snack before bedtime, you'll set yourself up for a good night's rest.
Ask your physician to recommend a pain reliever that won't trigger stomach ulcer problems. Next, realize that heavy alcohol consumption can erode and irritate your stomach's mucous lining, setting the stage for bleeding and inflammation. Limiting (or preferably avoiding) alcohol should considerably reduce that risk.
Finally, smoking ramps up stomach acid production and affects the stomach lining, making conditions more favorable for ulcers to take up residence there. By giving up smoking, you'll be less likely to experience more ulcer episodes, and you'll also take a step to improved health.
Read more: Diet Plan for a Stomach Ulcer
Eat These Foods for a Stomach Ulcer
Medical professionals generally agree that healing a stomach ulcer requires a two-pronged approach. Besides taking medications that target the ulcer, the patient should ideally modify diet and lifestyle until the ulcer has healed. However, there's now a divergence of thought on the best stomach ulcer diet menu. As a result, the list of foods to eat when you have a stomach ulcer has undergone some changes.
Previously, physicians recommended a bland diet for their stomach ulcer patients. However, Gastrointestinal Associates note that the development of increasingly powerful ulcer medications has reduced the bland diet's importance in patient treatment. With that said, some patients have found relief while eating "bland diet" foods.
Read more: High Antioxidant Fruits & Vegetables
Are Bananas Good for Ulcers?
Bananas are well-known nutritional powerhouses, as these popular yellow fruits contain over 10 percent of the recommended daily total for fiber and potassium. A typical banana is also packed with vitamin C and vitamin B6. These tasty fruits are popular breakfast staples, and they also make satisfying on-the-go-snacks.
With bananas' many recognized benefits, however, should they be on your list of foods to eat when you have a stomach ulcer? The answer appears to be a qualified "yes." A comprehensive scientific literature analysis, published in the September 2017 Pril (Makedon Akad Nauk Umet Odd Med Nauki) Journal, focused on green bananas' possible therapeutic applications.
The analysis' authors concluded that green bananas do have a role in complimentary treatment modalities for several medical conditions. Specifically, green bananas' active component flavonoid lencocyanidin appears to possess a strong ulcer-fighting capacity.
- The Ohio State University: “Avoiding Gastric Stimulants: Diet Changes for Ulcer Disease”
- University of Michigan: “Peptic Ulcer Disease”
- Mayo Clinic: “Peptic Ulcer”
- Canadian Society of Intestinal Research: “Diet for Ulcer Disease”
- Montana State University: “A Nutrition Fact Sheet: Bananas”
- Pril (Makedon Akad Nauk Umet Odd Med Nauki) Journal: “Let’s Go Bananas! Green Bananas and their Health Benefits”
- Gastrointestinal Associates, Inc.: "Bland Diet"