Those suffering from stomach ulcers may have numerous dietary concerns. While this guide can help you determine what foods to eat and what foods to avoid when you have stomach ulcers, it is best to consult a doctor so he or she can devise the proper diet for your condition.
According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, there is no diet that will treat or worsen stomach ulcers, as they are mostly consequences of stress and infection of the H. pylori bacterium on the stomach lining. For some people, however, eating certain foods and avoiding others may relieve discomforts.
It is generally recommended to eat small, frequent meals throughout the day, since the stomach should not be overwhelmed and should have time to heal itself. All acid-inducing foods should be avoided as well, since acidity can irritate the ulcer, cause more pain, and prolong healing time. Sometimes, mild, liquid meals, such as vegetable and fruit smoothies, can be ingested in place of solid foods.
Generally, dietary fiber is extremely important in maintaining optimal gastrointestinal health, and may help with the recovery of peptic ulcers. Some foods high in fiber include:
Not only do fresh fruit and vegetables provide tons of fiber, they are also a great source of important vitamins, minerals and antioxidants your body will need to heal ulcers. While all fresh fruits and vegetables are great sources of antioxidants, it has been known that colorful produce with deep, vibrant hues have even higher antioxidant content. Some examples include:
However, be careful to steer clear of citrus fruits, as the acidity in such fruits may irritate and worsen the ulcer.
Flavonoids are potent antioxidants that may help regulate H. pylori bacteria, which are the main culprits in stomach ulcer formation. An increased intake of foods rich in antioxidants can also be anti-inflammatory. Foods that are rich in flavonoids include:
For individuals affected with peptic ulcers, there are certain restrictions on diets. Generally, foods that are high in fat, high in acidity, or may cause food-related discomforts, such as heart burns, should be avoided for a more comfortable recovery. Some of the foods that may aggravate the symptoms and should be avoided include:
There are many healthy and delicious food alternatives for those suffering from stomach ulcers. Here are a few:
Instead of fatty cuts of red meat, healthier alternatives for protein include:
Instead of sodas or coffee, healthier alternatives for beverages include:
Instead of buttery pastries, healthier alternatives for carbohydrates include:
Instead of creamy condiments or spicy sauces, healthier alternatives that still add flavor include:
Just because you have a stomach ulcer does not mean that you can only eat bland, boring foods. Fortunately, there are many milder, low-fat alternatives to popular foods out there.