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Everybody's had it- upset stomach, gas, a little nausea, a little reflux. GI stuff happens, and sometimes it is a result of ongoing, chronic troubles. But sometimes you just had the wrong milk.
These are my favorite Quick Fixes for GI upsets, when your normal is just off.
Yes, they're bitter! Coffee is a bitter. So are Chicory and Dandelion. But herbal bitters like Swedish Bitters or Urban Moonshine bitters have a more medicinal effect.
Herbal bitters engage the entire digestive system. They increase digestive function- both mechanical and chemical- in the stomach, liver, pancreas, intestines, and everywhere else. This includes secretion of things like saliva, bile, stomach acids, and pancreatic enzymes.The bitter taste cools and draws down too, so an upset system that's hot and burpy can feel better.
Take bitters after you eat if there's discomfort, or even before if you anticipate it.
Apple Cider Vinegar
This one makes a lot of people nervous. But here's the thing: in my experience,
9 out of 10 people with "reflux" actually don't have ENOUGH acid
Food stays in your stomach until the food's pH is low, or acidic, enough to open the valve into the intestines. If your stomach isn't making enough acid to get the pH that low, the slightly-acidic food ball remains indefinitely... or until the esophagus can't hold it down anymore, like when you're sleeping. That's the burn of reflux- food that's acidic gets into the esophagus because it's not acidic enough to get into the intestines.
Adding vinegar to the mix can lower the food's pH enough to continue digestion. Alternatively, antacids work by neutralizing ALL the food, which may relieve discomfort but doesn't help digestion.
However, if you can't take the actual vinegar, there's now encapsulated vinegar! The enzymes and other goodies have been extracted from the acetic acid, so these capsules can make a decent substitute for the real deal.
If you're up for the challenge, try 1-2 tablespoons of organic apple cider vinegar in a splash of water and see how you feel. Bonus points for using raw vinegar, it has probiotics. Speaking of which...
In terms of Quick Fixes, I'm not talking daily dose capsules here. That's a WHOLE OTHER conversation to be had, and I recommend visiting your local independent health food store for a chat. They are usually staffed with well-educated people. Around me, that's Holly Hill.
Food sources of probiotcs are naturally fermented foods. Think raw sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, kefir, yogurt, kvass, and more. Notice how all those are strange sounding words from different languages? All traditional cuisines (SAD, the Standard American Diet, does NOT count!) have fermented foods as condiments. And that's how these are best- a dab of yogurt sauce, a forkful of sauerkraut, a fermented pickle. Adding a probiotic food to each meal helps digestion for that meal.
One more note...
We hear it a lot. But getting enough water can SERIOUSLY improve digestive function. Really. Try it out.
Good luck! Tell me what works best for you, too, in the comments below.
Fun Fact: I'm an herbalist and a movement coach. Not a doctor, or a pharmacist, and not pretending to be one on TV.
This is a public space, so my writing reflects my experiences and I try to stay general enough so it might relate to you. This does not constitute medical advice, and I encourage you to discuss concerns with your doctor. Remember, however, that the final say in your wellness decisions are always yours- you have the power to choose, you are the boss of you.
And, some of my posts may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase through them I'll earn a few cents. Thank you for supporting my work.
This website is provided for educational and informational purposes only and is not medical, mental health or healthcare advice. The information presented here is not intended to diagnose, treat, heal, cure or prevent any illness, medical condition or mental or emotional condition. Working with us is not a guarantee of any results. Paula Billig owns all copyrights to the materials presented here unless otherwise noted.