What is Indigestion?
Often, when someone eats too much or eats late at night, while under stress, or on the run, they may experience a burning sensation in their stomach or chest. This is indigestion. Indigestion is caused when excessive amounts of food—especially fatty and rich foods—churn up stomach acid and irritate the lining of the esophagus. Other sensations associated with indigestion include burping, belching, gurgling, distention, and abdominal bloating. When one suffers from chronic heartburn, it can develop into a more serious condition such as gastritis, esophagitis, or acid reflux.
How can I treat Indigestion?
Traditional Chinese medicine considers indigestion to be the result of damage to the spleen and stomach caused by poor diet, stress on the liver from emotional turmoil, and invasion of the stomach by pathogens. Treatment begins with emphasis on eating slowly and finishing a meal when the person is only three-quarters full. Foods that should be consumed include fresh fruits, such as papayas and mangoes, fresh vegetables, such as daikon radishes and sweet potatoes, whole grains, such as oats and pearl barley, and spices, including coriander, ginger, fennel, and dill. Other remedies include dissolving one teaspoon of baking soda in 8 ounces of warm water or drinking a tea of licorice roots after each meal for two weeks. The best form of exercise to move food along in the digestive tract is walking.
What should I avoid in my lifestyle for Indigestion?
Preventing indigestion starts with avoiding foods such as citrus fruits, tomatoes, rich sauces, creams, fried and processed foods, white flour and sugar, dairy products, and wheat. Other things to avoid are coffee, tea, wine, lying down after eating, certain antidepressants and sedatives, and smoking.
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