Gastritis --- Causes and Cures
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September 8, 2014


By Louise Carr, Associate Editor and Featured Columnist












Is your belly feeling queasy or irritable? Do you have what
many people call a “nervous stomach”? Or does pain in your
gut make you feel nauseous or vomit? If you have these
stomach symptoms you may be suffering from one of a
collection of conditions called gastritis – inflammation of the
lining of the stomach.

The discomfort of gastritis can be sudden (acute gastritis) or it
may build up over time (chronic gastritis). Gastritis can be
fleeting and harmless or it can lead to an ulcer and a higher risk
of stomach cancer.

And gastritis is common. Gastritis accounts for between 1.8 and
2.1 million doctors’ visits each year, according to research by
Mohammad Wehbi, MD, Emory University School of Medicine
and Atlanta Veterans Affairs Medical Center.  Find out all you
need to know about gastritis – and what you can do about it –
here.

What Are The Symptoms of Gastritis?

The signs and symptoms of gastritis differ from person to
person and you may even have the condition without suffering
any symptoms at all. Where symptoms are present, they include
a burning ache or gnawing pain (like indigestion) in your upper
abdomen, a feeling of fullness, nausea, vomiting, or a general
irritated feeling in the stomach. Sometimes the symptoms of
gastritis are the same as those for other serious conditions like
stomach
ulcers, so it is important to get any gastritis symptoms
checked out.

Why Do I Suffer From Gastritis?

Gastritis is caused by inflammation in the stomach wall and this
inflammation is usually due to infection with the bacteria that
cause ulcers – this is called Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori).

Inflammation also occurs when the stomach wall is weakened
or damaged. You may be suffering from a weakened stomach
wall because of an injury to the stomach, drinking too much
alcohol, taking too many painkillers like aspirin, ibuprofen, or
naproxen, or being under severe stress. Some doctors say that
smoking can also cause weakening in the stomach lining.
Certain autoimmune conditions also cause gastritis.

You are more likely to suffer from gastritis as you get older. Up
to 30 percent of people over the age of 50 have atrophic
gastritis, according to experts, because the stomach lining thins
more rapidly with age. (Read about
10 changes you should
make to your diet after age 50.)

Is Gastritis Dangerous?

Gastritis may be short-lived. In these type of cases, the damage
is not permanent and you will quickly lead a normal life once
more. However, if stomach inflammation is prolonged you can
develop a condition called "atrophic gastritis" or an
ulcer.

Atrophic gastritis causes complications such as decreased
absorption of
Vitamin B12, which leads to cognitive and
neurological problems, and an 89 percent increased risk of
osteoporosis according to a 2014 study from the College of
Medicine of Korea University.

In addition, if you have widespread thinning of the stomach
lining you are at increased risk of stomach cancer.

None of this is good news, so you’ll want to treat and prevent
gastritis as quickly as possible. Limit the progression of gastritis
and control symptoms by eating smaller meals on a frequent
basis, avoiding foods that irritate the stomach, avoiding
alcohol, switching pain relievers to Tylenol or others, and
managing your stress.
We looked at the scientific research into gastritis to find out
which natural remedies help treat and prevent this
uncomfortable condition.


























1.
Probiotics for Treating Gastritis?

Because many cases of gastritis are caused by the bacterium H.
pylori, it makes sense to look at supplements that slow the
growth of H. pylori and help prevent inflammation.

Many experts say friendly bacteria – probiotics – in the
Lactobacillus family help cut the growth of the bacteria,
including a 1998 study from Tokai University School of
Medicine, Kanagawa, Japan and a 2001 study from University
Hospital, Lausanne, Switzerland.

2.
Cranberry May Help Treat Gastritis

The herb cranberry has shown promise as a preventative
treatment for bladder infections because it stops bacteria
clinging to the bladder walls. A 2000 study from the Institute
of Technology, Technion, Haifa, Israel suggests that the herb
could also be useful for treating gastritis – it apparently helps
prevent the H. pylori bacteria sticking to the wall of the
stomach.

3.
Take Bioflavonoids to Help Treat Gastritis

Bioflavonoids can also slow down and prevent the growth of
bacteria on the stomach wall, according to studies. A 1995
study from Medizinische Hochschule Hannover, Germany shows
bioflavonoids help prevent H. pylori growth. Eat plenty of fresh
fruit and vegetables to increase the bioflavonoids in your diet,
but you can also take supplements if you are looking for a
simple gastritis prevention technique.

4.
Can Cinnamon Protect Against Gastritis?

The evidence is slight, but it appears that an extract of the
comforting spice cinnamon could help to protect your stomach
lining from inflammation that can cause gastritis. Two studies in
1985 by ZA Kassir and by AG Morgan, C Pacsoo, and WA
McAdam show this to be the case. The results were due to
supplementation with the processed form of the spice,
however, so it is unlikely that simply eating cinnamon could
have a positive effect.

5.
Prevent Gastritis with Vitamin C

The good news for people who like citrus fruits is that vitamin
C has been shown to act against the bacterium H. pylori. A
1998 study from National Food and Nutrition Institute,
Warsaw, Poland demonstrated that a high-dose vitamin C
treatment eradicated H. pylori in 30 percent of the patients
treated.  

6.
Drink Fermented Milk as a Gastritis Treatment

Milk fermented with S. thermophilus CRL 1190 is an effective
treatment for gastritis, according to a 2010 study from Centro
de Referencia para Lactobacilos (CERELA)-CONICET, Tucumán,
Argentina. The fermented milk drink increased the thickness of
the mucus in the stomach lining, and helped change the
immune response against bacteria in the gut. Scientists suggest
that the milk could be an effective functional food for people
who suffer from gastritis conditions.

7.
The Role of Cayenne in Treating Gastritis

Could a pepper really help treat gastritis? According to experts,
cayenne pepper can help to protect your stomach against
damage caused by taking pain relievers. A 1995 study by
researchers at the Medical University of Pécs, Hungary and a
1989 study from the University of Graz, Austria show that
stomach damage caused by anti-inflammatory drugs, including
inflammation from gastritis, can be minimized by extract of
cayenne pepper.























































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Oranges and other foods rich in Vitamin C help relieve many
cases of gastritis.