Tag Archives: indigestion

Oh Crumbs… something I ate does not agree with me…

Everyone has been in this situation.  It is Christmas (or Thanksgiving, or a Wedding Reception, or a Birthday dinner out).  You get a feeling that something you have eaten does not agree with you.  It might be nausea you feel, or a highly flavoured something repeats on you, or you get the delightful acid reflux.  It usually happens at a very important point.  Like in an important business meeting.  Or in a quiet bit when you are at Church.  Or when you are on a date.  It is horrible.  But it doesn’t have to happen regularly.

Indigestion is no joke.  Not funny at all.  I know people who have had to severely curtail their life because their indigestion is a little out of control.  It is a catch all title for any discomfort experienced in the upper abdomen and whatever causes it, I know it is miserable for the person on the sharp end.  If the indigestion is chronic, then you should definitely see a medical professional.  If it comes on when you exercise, then it is even more important to see someone.  It could be heart and not stomach trouble.

So what can you do to stop it?  You need to cut out the stimulants.  Say goodbye to coffee, tea, nicotine, chocolate.  All of these have a chemical that relaxes the lower oesophageal sphincter which contributes to indigestion.  It is a good job that I don’t get indigestion very often, because I would find it very hard to give up coffee and tea.  The other two, no problem, but you will have to prise the caffienated beverages from my cold, dead hands.

The second piece of advice from the Country Doctor book is not to be a hog at a trough come feeding time.  Overeating will send the stomach into a tailspin.  Basically, if you eat a huge meal, then your stomach produces too much acid to help digest that meal and then it keeps on going  producing a lot of acid, even if you only eat what you normally would.  You end up in a hyperacidity vicious circle.  Cut down on the portion sizes might help, if you think it could be overindulgence causing the problem.

What about trying a calmative tea?  Catnip and Chamomile make good digestive additions, although I might have to battle with the cats for the catnip.  Liquorice and mint is a really tasty and fabulous mixture for calming the digestive system, and so is Fennel Tea.  You can pick up tea bags of these flavours (except the catnip!) in most supermarkets these days.

Also, if you find that your indigestion happens after you have eaten rich, fatty foods, or after you have eaten highly spiced foods, then perhaps your eating patterns needs a bit of an overhaul.  Taking away fat and cream does not mean that you lose taste or flavour and if it calms your digestion, then it has to be worth a try.

From my research, one of the thing that many people are unaware of is that sometimes indigestion is caused by too little stomach acid as well as too much.  If you try all of the above remedies and you are still feeling horrible, then try drinking a little apple cider vinegar in a glass of water before you eat.  If you don’t get indigestion, then bingo – you had hypoacidity issues.


Allspice… what is it, and what can it be used for?

Allspice is one of the spices in our kitchen.  It tends to lie around a bit and is a rather interesting looking thing, but I was curious about what we can use it for.

allspice berries

It is best to use the unripe berries and leaves for making medicinal preparations.  It is also known as Jamaica Pepper, Clove Pepper or Pimento.  Interestingly, the flavour of the allspice berry is a mixture of black pepper, nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon.


Allspice is used in the treatment of indigestion, intestinal gas and abdominal pain, as well heavy menstruation, vomitting and diahrrea.  It has also been used to treat fevers, colds, high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity.  It is also apparently great for bowel cleansing as well.

allspice oil

Allspice oil is high in eugenol, which has local anaesthetic and antiseptic properties.  It is also a mineral and vitamin powerhouse.  If you can thinking of a vitamin or mineral, then allspice probably has it in!  One interesting property of the oil is that it can slow blood clotting.  If you are on any blood thinning drugs, then please be careful when using allspice.

ground allspice

The volatile oils in the berries are rubefacients.  This means that it irritates the skin and expands the blood vessels increasing the flow of blood to make the skin feel warmer.  This means allspice is incredibly useful for the treatment of sore joints and arthritic and sore muscles.  With all the boxes we are moving in the near future, I suspect I will need some of it!