is a type of pain and sick feeling after eating food.
What to look for
We should not normally notice
the digestion process. Indigestion is a term that covers a large variety of assorted
stomach problems but mostly it means pain after eating food, usually accompanied by a
bloated and sick feeling.
Indigestion is either a
symptom of a disease or the result of eating unfavourable foods.
Indigestion may be occasional
or occur daily. Though uncomfortable, indigestion itself is not life-threatening. However,
this condition should not be left untreated.
This is a disorder which
everyone will feel occasionally.
It has many causes such as
too much food consumption
frequently using analgesics
and other pain relievers;
eating while stressed;
eating food that does not
agree with your system.
eating in a hurry and not
chewing your food properly
and smoking are two major causes of chronic indigestion.
There are many treatments
available to help indigestion and the right one depends on your symptoms. Your doctor or
Pharmacist will advise which course of action to take.
Herbal Therapies - Various
teas may calm digestive distress. To reduce stomach acidity, drink meadowsweet
(Filipendula ulmaria) tea.
If you also feel stressed,
add lavender (Lavandula officinalis) or chamomile (Matricaria recutita).
If bloating or gas is a
problem, try a tea of peppermint (Mentha piperita),
chamomile, or lemon balm (Melissa officinalis).
Certain herbs are able to
help with digestion and heartburn. About 30 minutes before eating, drink 1/2 cup of tea
made from goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis), barberry (Berberis vulgaris) bark, gentian (Gentiana lutea) root, or Oregon grape (Mahonia
is another herb with properties that can aid digestion.
Try a low fat diet with less
protein from fatty foods, highly spiced foods, sugars, alcohol, tea and coffee. Do not
drink too much fluid with your meals. Chew slowly. Try Acidophilus Bifidus to maintain
good levels of friendly intestinal flora. Fruits that have digestive enzymes are pawpaw,
kiwi fruit and pineapple. It is wise to start eating natural live yogurt as well.
Refrain from smoking.
For occasional indigestion
with heartburn, use antacids if recommended by your doctor or try an alternative solution
- see above
Try one or several of the
herbal teas above to relieve your specific symptoms.
Relax during and after
If you frequently chew gum,
stop for a while to see if your symptoms dissipate.
Avoid the foods mentioned
above to improve your digestion.
Drink more fluids -
filtered water is best - during the day but try not to have too much fluid while eating as
this can dilute the digestive enzymes.
Indigestion is universal;
it's almost impossible to avoid it forever. You can encounter it less often, however, if
you watch your weight; avoid overeating or overindulging in alcohol; avoid your
"trigger" foods; and abstain from smoking.
When to seek further
any abdominal pain
continues for more than six hours
you experience indigestion
with any other problematic symptom
you have repeated bouts of
consistently follows your eating dairy products.