How to use food to help a stomach ulcer

Written by sheila c. wilkinson
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Years ago the common thought on ulcers was to drown them in milk products and spicy foods were seen as ulcer-causing. Today, medical experts have made a complete turnaround on these two ideas as both of them were found to be false.

Ulcers result from a bacterial infection from heliobacter pylori and can be treated with medication. There are several types of foods that you can eat to help you heal your ulcers, too.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Avoid milk products as they are now known to stimulate stomach acid production which will cause ulcer flare-ups and pain. Although milk and creamy milk-based foods soothe the stomach initially, they actually cause tissues to become inflamed in ulcer patients. Later, dairy is hard to digest and produce extra stomach acid during digestion.

  2. 2

    Drink filtered water to dilute stomach acids. Especially after a meal, a small glass of water aids in digestion and makes the stomach acids less upsetting to sensitive tissues.

  3. 3

    Hold your nose and drink cabbage juice. Raw cabbage juice, more palatable when mixed with celery juice, is a long-known ulcer remedy. It contains S-methyl-methionine and glutamine which are known to have healing effects on ulcers. Glutamine is also present in pineapple. Drink about a quart of this a day to soothe inflammation and pain.

  4. 4

    Eat bananas and plantains, especially if they're green. These are used in many countries as an ulcer "cure." They help increase mucous production and cell growth in the stomach wall. Eat green plantains cooked with garlic for a taste treat. Although a folk remedy, bananas have long been recommended for soothing all kinds of gastrointestinal disorders.

  5. 5

    Eat pure liquorice. A lot of candy sold as liquorice is only flavoured with anise which is a liquorice-tasting herb. Only real liquorice, which you can buy at a health food stores, contains healing property glycyrrhizic acid which is an ulcer remedy.

    German doctors have done exhaustive research on liquorice. Their medical watchdog organisation has approved liquorice as a treatment for ulcers. See Resources below.

  6. 6

    Try Manuka honey. This has been found to be effective in some patients with stubborn ulcers (and stubborn wounds) even when antibiotics didn't work. Studies show that Manuka honey has been shown to heal many ailments and it is widely used by physicians for its curative properties in its native New Zealand.

    This honey is from bees who use the Manuka bush for food which contains antibacterial, antiseptic and anti-fungal properties. Spread about a tablespoon on a piece of bread and consume before meals and when symptoms are present.

    It will take several weeks to a few months to heal an ulcer. See Resources to learn more about Manuka honey.

Tips and warnings

  • Eat several small meals a day. It helps digestion to not overstuff yourself at one meal.
  • Don't lie down after you eat. It makes the stomach work harder and allows stomach acids to spill into the oesophagus, irritating the whole upper gastrointestinal tract.

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