Monday, July 22, 2013

What's Sour Stomach

Sour stomach is a common name for acid indigestion, a condition millions of people suffer from each day. As more people sacrifice healthy eating habits in today's hectic, stressful lifestyles, they have come to accept sour stomach as a given. It's important not to ignore sour stomach, because it can eventually lead to an ulcer.


Pain above the navel, excessive burping and nausea are a few of the symptoms of acid indigestion. Occasionally you will feel very full after eating a small amount of food, and your abdomen may swell slightly. Often you will have heartburn.


The discomfort caused by a sour stomach can often be attributed to overeating or eating too much processed or badly prepared food, such as greasy fast food. Consuming alcohol, caffeine and nicotine exacerbates the problem because such stimulants have a dehydrating effect on the body. Eating large amounts of food late in the day is also a contributing factor to a sour stomach. Spicy foods, such as peppers and citrus fruits and juices are sometimes a factor. Stress also contributes because the body produces more hydrochloric acid in stress mode.


Over the counter acid-reducing medications such as Pepcid AC, Tums, Maalox and Mylanta can temporarily curb your symptoms. Don't use these medications on a constant, long-term basis, because they can have harmful side effects and only mask symptoms instead of treating the condition. Orange oil and peppermint oil have a calming, settling effect on your stomach. Drinking a full glass of water can help.


Get enough fiber from green vegetables, and consume eight glasses of water a day, because constipation can sometimes be a contributing factor to sour stomach. Instead of eating two large meals, eat many small meals throughout the day so your stomach doesn't extend. Sleep with your head elevated to avoid heartburn.


Stay away from NSAIDS, or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen, aspirin and naproxen sodium. These worsen sour stomach and, particularly if abused, lead to stomach ulcers. Do not consume citrus fruits or fried and spicy foods. Stay away from coffee, tea and caffeinated drinks. Avoid alcohol and cigarettes.

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