You’ve probably heard the Ayurvedic adage according to which lasting health starts in the gut, and recent research shows the state of the tummy also has a hand in mental shape. But while the fact that healthy gut is a cornerstone of long-term well-being is easy to digest, fixing damage in the tummy area isn’t always as easy. Or is it? It can be, if you know which herbs to throw onto your plate and heal digestive hitches naturally.
Say ‘No’ to Nausea
Medicine men have used ginger to treat nausea for centuries. For pregnancy-caused nausea or queasiness caused by acid reflux, ginger root will function as an antispasmodic agent and calm an irritated belly without the need for potentially harmful pharmaceuticals – for as long as you don’t consume it in excess, that is. More than 4 grams of ginger a day can aggravate queasiness, and moms-to-be should four 250-milligram servings of it a day to alleviate nausea.
Another herb with powerful antispasmodic properties, peppermint can help soothe light to mild nausea, and you can consume it as a spice, fresh herb, or essential oil. To max out nausea relief and alleviate h-pylori symptoms, add a few peppermint leaves to a glass of lemonade and drink to your gut health.
Bowel, Put a Move on
Shipshape digestion is built on seamless bowel movement, and bowel movement in turn is built on healthy eating habits. Unfortunately, the modern diet is lacking in fiber, water, and essential nutrients, which is why it may be a good idea to turn to herbs for a quick tummy fix if your small intestine is refusing to budge. To sway your bowel to put a move on, try aloe vera. In moderate doses, aloe functions as a potent laxative and can relieve constipation and sluggish bowel, but make sure you don’t go overboard with daily aloe intake as it can result in intestinal irritation and cramps.
If constipation is a woe you struggle with every day, grab some senna leaf and make yourself a cup of tea. One of the most powerful natural laxatives, senna may not have a mouth-watering taste but it gets the job done. If you don’t have the stomach for senna, opt for cascara sagrada instead. A common ingredient of most over-the-counter laxatives, the herb was used by Native Americans as a remedy to various health issues, including constipation and sluggish digestion.
Herbal Belly Repair Squad
In case you suffer from a leaky gut syndrome, you may not have to sign up for a pharmaceutical treatment just yet. To fix leaky gut, you can reach for Mother Nature’s secret belly repair squad featuring marshmallow and licorice root, slippery elm, plantain, and yarrow. Each of these herbs has been used by alternative medicine practitioners to heal digestive problems, and their blend can efficiently remedy leaky gut and help restore healthy shape to your gut flora.
Or, if an odd bout of stomach cramps and indigestion are the most serious gut problems you get to experience now and again, a cup of spearmint or chamomile tea might be all you need to put an end to recurring tummy glitches. Chamomile has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties and can help reduce nausea and speed up bowel movement, and it’s one of the herbal remedies of the past that have a pretty bright future.
As the pace of modern life continues to pick up, fewer and fewer of us will have the stomach for just about any food TV chefs throw our way. To keep your tummy healthy and your body in the fit and fast lane, stock your menu with gut-friendly herbs and enjoy mouthfuls of wellbeing at every meal. Bon appétit!