Best Natural Remedies for Upset Stomachs

Everyone has likely experienced a stomach ache at some point, whether caused by overeating, inflammation, heightened nerves, or one of the many other potential factors. Luckily many natural remedies can help ease symptoms like nausea, stomach cramps, heartburn, and bloating to name a few. 


Natural remedies for stomach issues can be quite effective and don’t carry the potential for negative side effects or interactions like many over-the-counter medications. After all, some gastric discomfort medications can actually cause other stomach issues, leaving you with a list of problems and little relief. 


Next time you are feeling mild upset stomach symptoms, reach for one or more of the below natural remedies. However, if you have persistent issues or more severe stomach pain, speaking with your doctor is always your best option to help pinpoint underlying sources.

CBD


Before we dive into CBD, let’s dive into what may be happening to your body when stomach aches occur, including nausea, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and gastroparesis—a disorder that hinders the movement of food from the stomach to the small intestine, resulting in delayed emptying. Gastroparesis manifests as bloating, abdominal pain, and vomiting due to the prolonged stomach-emptying process.


CBD can be one of the best natural remedies for gastroparesis by reducing anguish and nausea, while also decreasing vomiting. The key to its pain relief is that interacts with CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors, working simultaneously with the digestive, immune, and nervous systems to regulate pain. 


However, that’s not the only way CBD can be an effective remedy. Many stomach aches involve the overproduction of digestive acids, which are closely related to any anxiety you may be experiencing. CBD can help alleviate such stresses, ultimately relaxing your body and stopping subsequent stomach aches from worsening. 


Finally, CBD is a fantastic anti-inflammatory due to how it interacts with the body's endocannabinoid system to regulate immune responses. 


Taking CBD oil sublingually (under the tongue) can be the best way to curb your stomach ache symptoms in a natural and quick way. Immediately absorbed into the capillaries under your tongue, CBD bypasses being metabolized by your liver when taken this way. In turn, the full potency is absorbed into your bloodstream for full effect. 


Botanika Life's Elite Elixir boasts 1500 mg of full spectrum and is crafted with organically farmed hemp seed oil. The result is a potent blend with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, making it an ideal natural remedy for upset stomachs. 


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Apple Cider Vinegar


Drinking apple cider vinegar can be a natural remedy for an upset stomach by alleviating acid reflux and relaxing your gastrointestinal system. The acids in apple cider vinegar promote an alkaline state in the stomach, which can alleviate nausea. If you are suffering from diarrhea, apple cider vinegar may slow down your digestive process, assisting in regular bowel movements instead of diarrhea.

Considered one of the best natural remedies for upset stomachs, apple cider vinegar's unpleasant flavor holds it back from being more popular. Its famous for its  very strong, sour taste, which turns off many. 

Our tip? You can mix 1 cup of warm water with 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and 1 tablespoon of honey. Although the honey is not necessary, it helps dilute the bitter taste to make this natural remedy more palatable. 


Ginger


Ginger has natural anti-nausea properties that can help settle an upset stomach. Best of all, there’s many ways to ingest this natural remedy, including ginger-infused mints, chewables, and teas. The secret behind ginger’s ability to soothe stomach aches is that it’s nature’s anti-inflammatory superstar. 


Research shows that the compounds in ginger can increase digestive responsiveness and speed up the stomach’s emptying cycle, thus soothing an upset stomach. If you don’t like the taste of ginger, natural ginger supplements also come in the form of capsules, powders, and extracts.


Peppermint


Peppermint is an herb used to soothe stomach issues like indigestion and numerous digestive conditions worldwide. Peppermint oil is a type of medicine called an antispasmodic which works by helping the muscle of the bowel wall relax.


Used as a natural remedy to treat a nervous stomach, peppermint can be taken in capsules, teas, dietary supplements, and in oil form. Used as a supplement, peppermint is well known for treating stomach cramps, bloating, heartburn, and gas, along with irritable bowel syndrome


Cumin


If you are suffering from an aching stomach, indigestion, diarrhea, or even morning sickness, cumin can provide relief for stomach and digestion problems. Best of all, it’s something you may already have at home, as cumin is a common spice that combats inflammation and promotes digestion, among many other natural health benefits. 


Cumin naturally includes chemicals that act as anti-gas ingredients, helping with stomach issues such as irritable bowel syndrome, heartburn, bloating, and gas. Including cumin in your daily routine through supplements or cooking is an ideal way to get ahead of stomach issues. 


Chamomile 


Chamomile tea is well known for helping to remedy upset stomachs, as well as to soothe anxiety and induce sleepiness. This natural herb is so successful because it relaxes your digestive muscles to help with issues like gas, indigestion, and motion sickness. As a result, those who suffer from irritable bowel syndrome, diarrhea, or nausea can find natural relief with a soothing cup of chamomile tea. 

 

Green Tea

 

Green tea is one of the best drinks to reach for when handling an upset stomach. For starters, its moderate caffeine content provides a gentle energy boost without overstimulating the digestive system. It's also rich in antioxidants and polyphenols that may help soothe the digestive tract and reduce stomach irritation. The mild astringency of green tea contributes to a tightening effect on tissues in the digestive system, offering a comforting sensation. 

 

Foods High in Fiber 

Upset stomachs can result from a wide array of issues, showcasing themselves through a variety of symptoms. One common manifestation is constipation. To promote regular bowel movements, opt for healthy foods rich in fiber, with prunes being one of the top choices. Other constipation-friendly options include figs, leafy greens, and kiwis. Except for extreme situations, it's best to choose natural remedies over laxatives when addressing an upset stomach. 

Yogurt


Yogurt is rich in probiotics, a valuable tool that balances bacteria (both good and bad) within your digestive tract, aiding in digestion and alleviating inflammation. For the best results, seek out Greek yogurt, as it has a significant amount of lactose removed (which can aggravate your upset stomach). Also, keep an eye out for yogurt promoting their live active cultures, as this specifically refers to a higher level of probiotics.

Don't dilute the power of this natural remedy by adding sugars or fake sweeteners; if you want to add some flavor to your yogurt, opt for blueberries or other fruits with generous antioxidant content.

 

Bananas


Eating a banana can help relieve an upset stomach for a variety of reasons. Firstly, bananas are a good source of potassium and other electrolytes that a person may be lacking as a result of vomiting or diarrhea. Potassium supports digestion and can naturally reduce stomach pain. 


Bananas also benefit your digestive system by providing prebiotics which help good bacteria (aka probiotics) thrive in your gastrointestinal system. Probiotics can help treat diarrhea, digestive tract infections, and irritable bowel syndrome.


Another natural remedy found in bananas that can alleviate an upset stomach is pectin, a soluble fiber. Pectin aids in digestive support, helps reduce stomach pain, and can even be effective in treating diarrhea.


Rice


Bland, easy-to-digest foods like white rice are easy on your belly when you need nutrients but don’t feel well. 


When looking for a remedy for upset stomachs, reach for refined grains like white rice rather than their whole-grain counterparts, as this type is lower in fiber and easier on your digestive tract. 

 

Water



The human body needs a sufficient amount of water to digest and absorb nutrients effectively and avoid dehydration. Staying hydrated makes digestion work more efficiently, decreasing the likelihood of suffering from an upset stomach or heartburn.


If you are experiencing an upset stomach, it's crucial to replace any lost fluids in your system. Being dehydrated can lead to stomach cramping and nausea. Adding electrolytes to your water is a great way to increase hydration and prevent dehydration.


If your stomach can handle some flavor, coconut water can be an effective way to replenish electrolytes, magnesium, potassium, and sodium when you have been sick to your stomach.


If you are having trouble keeping liquids down, try taking repetitive small sips of water or sucking on ice chips.


Bonus – Take a Lavender-Enriched Bath


Relaxing in a hot bath when you have an upset stomach is another way to receive the relief you seek, as the warmth of the water can help relax your stomach muscles. Plus, you can heighten your pain relief by using lavender essential oil in your bath. 


Lavender oil is known for its relaxing properties, but it is also an effective natural solution for fighting nausea and other stomach discomforts. 


 

Foods to Avoid


Certain foods can help provide relief from an upset stomach, but others can have the opposite effect and make you feel worse and should be avoided until your symptoms are gone. 

While foods rich in fiber, such as raw vegetables and whole grains, are generally healthy, they can exacerbate an upset stomach. Additionally, it's advisable to avoid milk, cheese, and other dairy products when your stomach feels off, as they are challenging for the body to digest.

The rule of thumb when your stomach is nervous or upset is to keep things simple. Avoid highly acidic fruits like lemons, limes, oranges, and anything high in sugar. Stick with bland, easy-to-digest foods like toast, white rice, apple sauce, and bananas.

Consider Whether Alcohol, Tobacco and/or Coffee Could be the Culprit


One of the best natural remedies to prolonged upset stomachs may involve removing substances rather than adding. After all, enjoying too much coffee, alcohol, or tobacco products can sometimes make your stomach more sensitive by causing inflammation of your stomach lining, amongst other issues. If you consistently experience stomach aches, try taking a break from these substances and see how your stomach responds (and consult with a doctor). Remember, moderation is key for maintaining a happy and healthy digestive system.

 

By Emily Wegener

With a unique background as an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, Masters Degree in Teaching and experience in Psychology, Emily spends much of her time researching and trying out new holistic healing modalities.