Gastritis occurs when stomach lining gets inflamed or swollen. It can last for a short time which is termed as acute gastritis or it can linger for months or years (chronic gastritis).
• Common medicines that contribute to gastritis are aspirin, nonsteriodical anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen drug use to treat fever, headache, toothache, back pain, arthritis, and menstrual cramps. Naproxen is also a non steroidal drug use to treat arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, gout, tendinitis (inflammation of tendons), and menstrual cramps. Potassium supplements iron tablets and chemotherapy drugs.
• Pernicious anemia a type of anemia with low red blood cells or low hemoglobin level. It’s a form of megaloblastic anemia characterized by an abnormally large type of red blood cell (megaloblast) that is formed by the bone marrow when vitamin B-12 or folic acid levels are low.
• It may occur due to infections like bacterial infection (Helicobacter pylori lives in the mucous lining of the stomach), yeast infection, viral infection, fungal infections, parasites and worms.
• Other causes are stress, smoking and alcohol consumption.
Pain or abdominal discomfort is a common symptom. A person sometimes feels a burning sensation in the stomach. Always feel fullness in the stomach. Vomiting, indigestion, gnawing feeling in the stomach between the meals or night are the symptoms.
Treatment of gastritis depends on the severeness of the disease. Some lifestyle modifications cure the disease like stopping cigarette smoking, limiting the intake of alcohol, tobacco, caffeine intake, carbonated beverages, switching to other pain relieving drugs like acetaminophen.
Earlier doctors recommended to eat bland foods with milk and only small portions of food with each meal. Researchers now claim that such a diet isn’t required to treat gastritis or ulcers.
Foods for gastritis should be easy digestible like cereals, fruits, vegetables and all grains. Spices and condiments should be avoided. Skimmed milk and yogurt with low fat content is helpful. A glass of coconut water on a daily basis needs to be taken as it not only gives rest to the stomach but also provides essential vitamins and nutrients. Chew the foods properly as chewing helps to break down foods into smaller portions and it don’t require much gastric juice in the stomach to break down further for absorption. Avoid reclining after meals and it’s important to sit straight after because lying down will hamper gastrointestinal absorption. Don’t drink lots of water with meals.
Useful herbs for treatment of gastritis:
• Asparagus reduces excess acid secretion in the stomach.
• Cardamom reduces heartburn.
• Fennel- chewing of fennel seeds after meals soothes the stomach, facilitates the digestion and reduces flatulence.
• Indian gooseberry or amla also useful for gastritis.
• Ginger juice is useful to treat acid dyspepsia associated with gastritis.
Some of the home remedies are:
• Lemon juice helps to reduce bloating or vomiting tendency.
• One tbsp of triphala powder on a glass of water, boiling it to half a glass and consumed along with ghee or honey reduces gastritis.