Food Allergies and Stomachaches

easing stomach pain

Nothing gets in the way more than a rumbling tummy. You can be fine one minute, and the next the stomach pains and gurgling are too much to bear. Sometimes you realize it was something you ate while other times you are left perplexed trying to figure out what is going on. Maybe it was cross-contamination, too much fiber, or too much dairy. No matter what the cause, it doesn't make it any easier. For those with a sensitive stomach from food allergies, these can be familiar feelings.

When you are faced with a stomachache it can leave you running for a bathroom, keep you curled up on the couch, or debilitated in bed. For many, it can impact daily living and hours that you might miss at work or at school. While you try hard to ignore the pain it is often not easy to do. Anyone with reoccurring stomachaches will attest to the fact they would try to avoid any food that might have caused this issue in the first place.

Food Allergies

Those who suffer from food allergies know a way to well that cross contamination or accidental consumption of the food allergen can lead to an upset stomach, among other negative reactions. When your body is contaminated with the food allergen, it reacts by attacking the food as if it is a foreign body.  This can lead to further digestive distress, as well as other symptoms of an allergic reaction.

For those with food allergies, it is important that you understand the importance of food safety, how to read labels, and always be sure to ask about food ingredients and preparation when dining out. Despite these measures sometimes the inevitable happens and symptoms of exposure to a food allergy, such as stomachaches, can occur. It is important to note that if symptoms get progressively worse, or include any difficulty breathing, that medical attention is sought right away. Working closely with an allergist, your physician or dietitian can help to reduce the incidences of allergic reactions.

Stomach Distress

Stomach distress can be painful and uncomfortable and often it is just the passage of time that helps to ease the pain. With food allergies, the allergen may need to leave your system for symptoms to resolve. However, there are still many remedies that often can help to alleviate some, if not all, of the discomfort. Perhaps some of these remedies are in order to help provide relief from that nagging stomachache.

  • Chamomile Tea: Chamomile helps ease stomach pain by working as an anti-inflammatory and by relaxing the smooth muscle. As the muscle in the upper digestive tract is relaxed, the contractions that move food through it ease up and lessen the pain of cramping and spasms. A cup of hot chamomile tea may do the trick!
  • Heating Pad: Either a heating pad or a hot pack should be placed on your abdomen to help reduce pain. The heat will help to loosen and relax muscles and relieve some discomfort. Soaking in a warm bath may also help, with the heat having the same effect.
  • Mint: Mint leaves have been shown to have many health benefits including helping to relax muscles in the stomach, soothing inflamed or irritated stomachs. Digestion is improved as the mint helps bile to flow more efficiently, allowing food to be digested more quickly and let the stomach muscles relax. A cup of peppermint tea or even a mint sucking candy can both help ease the pain.​
  • Ginger Root: Ginger contains chemicals that have been found to relax smooth muscle, especially those in the intestinal tract. Consuming ginger will move food more quickly and more easily, helping to relieve stomach cramps. Ginger has also been found to relieve nausea as well. Ginger tea, ginger root or even ginger ale are all acceptable sources of ginger.
  • Seltzer and Lime: Lime has been found to aid in soothing an aching stomach.  Lime’s scent actually causes your mouth to water, increasing the production of saliva. With more saliva, an increase in digestive juices follows in the stomach. The acidity of the lime also continues to stimulate the digestive system, bile, and acids. All of this help to sooth the stomach as food moves more quickly and easily through it. It is best to slice it up and add it to a glass of seltzer. While the lime soothes the stomach, the carbonation can play an additional role in causing you to burp, which can relieve stomach pressure at the same time.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar: Apple cider vinegar has been found to have an antibiotic nature, and helps to soothe the stomach and aid in digestion. It can be added to warm water and served with a teaspoon of honey.