How to Alleviate Nausea Feelings Naturally: Simple Strategies to TryCheckable Health
Everyone will experience nausea, or upset stomach, at some point in their lives. It is a common complaint that can have many causes. Knowing what is causing your nausea can help you figure out how to reduce it. This post will discuss how you can alleviate nausea using natural remedies.
What Are Some Natural Remedies for Nausea?
Medications used to relieve nausea can have unwanted side effects. It is best to use more natural or traditional methods to reduce nausea if possible. Some of these methods are scientifically studied, and some are not. Try various treatments to see which one works for you and your situation.
Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese treatment for nausea. It involves putting very thin needles into the skin at the right places to treat illnesses and diseases. You can use acupuncture for pregnancy-related sickness and nausea caused by cancer treatments. One downside is that a skilled practitioner has to administer the treatment, so it is not readily available to ease your symptoms.
Acupressure and acupuncture help activate nerves that transmit signals to the brain. Acupressure is applying pressure to specific points on the body to relieve pain, reduce stress, and resolve symptoms. Acupressure relieves nausea, and you can try it yourself at home. There is a point on the underside of the wrist close to the thumb that, if you apply pressure in a circular motion for 2-3 minutes, is shown to reduce nausea and vomiting significantly.
Studies have shown that inhaling certain scents, such as peppermint essential oils, can reduce nausea. You can relax the digestive system by inhaling peppermint or drinking it in tea. In one study, peppermint inhalation reduced nausea in nearly 80% of the subjects. If you have access to peppermint oil, it is worth a try to see if it will relieve your nausea. Some other oils that can be effective are ginger, spearmint, lemon, and cardamom oils.
Taking your mind off your nausea to take some deep breaths might help for a time if the sickness is not too severe. Healthcare professionals recommend taking slow deep breaths to ease the feelings of nausea. Breathing in through the nose for a count of three and breathing out of the mouth for a count of three can relieve nausea in many cases.
What Lifestyle Changes Can I Make to Reduce Nausea?
Sometimes we can do things to help alleviate nausea. Other times, the causes of our sickness are out of our control, such as early pregnancy hormones or cancer treatments. But you can try a few lifestyle changes that might help relieve your nausea symptoms.
Proper Food Combining
Eating foods that do not combine well when digested can sometimes give the feeling of nausea. For example, if you eat some watermelon and then a hamburger, you might have an upset stomach from the food digesting at different rates. With its high water content and simple sugars, watermelon digests quickly. Hamburgers are complex and take a longer time to digest. When you eat the two together, they can cause digestive issues in the stomach. Improper food combining can cause constipation, acid reflux, and stomach aches, leading to more nausea. Combine similar foods for the best result.
Staying physically active can help food move through your body effectively and may keep your mind off nausea if the feeling is mild. Studies have shown gentle activities such as walking or yoga to reduce nausea in some individuals. Staying hydrated while being active will help as well. Physical activity will not only help relieve nausea but will improve your overall health.
There are a few things you can try while eating your meals to help with digestion and feelings of nausea:
- Avoid liquids with meals for ideal digestion.
- Chew your food thoroughly.
- Avoid distractions while eating.
- If you have trouble with reflux or nausea after meals, sit upright after you eat for 30-60 minutes to let your food properly digest.
These tips will help with digestion and reduce the incidence of nausea.
How Can I Identify the Cause of My Nausea?
Many adults experience nausea at some point in their lives, and finding out the cause is the fastest way to alleviate the symptoms and avoid unwanted recurrence in the future. The feeling of nausea in the body is a protective mechanism and a warning to prevent potentially harmful substances. If you have ingested or come in contact with something the body thinks is dangerous, it will attempt to get rid of it by vomiting or at least making you nauseous enough not to want to ingest any more.
Below are some common causes of nausea:
- Cancer treatments such as chemotherapy
- Early pregnancy
- Car sickness (or motion sickness)
- Chemical toxins
- Food poisoning
- Smells or odors
You can identify the causes of nausea by retracing your steps and asking yourself if you have done or ingested anything that might be causing nausea. Women are more likely than men to experience nausea.
Are There Any Foods or Drinks I Should Avoid If I Have Nausea?
While nauseous, try to consume small meals of bland, dry food such as crackers or toast. A large meal of spicy or fatty foods might worsen your symptoms. You might not want to eat or drink anything if you are experiencing nausea. It is ok to skip food or drinks to let the feeling pass. If you are experiencing nausea and vomiting, it is essential to stay hydrated. You can sip clear drinks like broth and water. You can also have popsicles or electrolyte drinks. If you are pregnant or nursing, check with your doctor before taking supplements.
If you feel like you can eat or drink, here are a few things that can help settle your stomach:
- Ginger: Some studies suggest ginger helps relieve nausea, especially if you're nauseous in the first trimester of pregnancy or during chemotherapy treatment. A study in the Nutrition Journal reports that ginger tea can reduce nausea significantly compared to a placebo. Sip some ginger tea in the morning or after a meal to help stave off that nauseous feeling.
- Lemon water: Some people have found that drinking water with fresh lemon squeezed in relieves their nausea. The essential oils in the lemon skin are also soothing to inhale.
- Fennel, cinnamon, and cumin: Eating or drinking these herbs in tea can be soothing to the digestive system and great at relieving nausea. These herbs also have pain-relieving properties.
These are just some methods you can try at home to relieve nausea. Not all of these will work for you. Try them one at a time to see which one is effective. These suggestions can complement nausea medications if your condition is severe. If you are still experiencing nausea after trying home remedies or if severe vomiting and/or diarrhea accompanies your nausea, please make an appointment to see your healthcare provider.
MacPherson, R. (2022, September 27). 10 Natural Remedies to Relieve Nausea. Verywell Fit. www.verywellfit.com/natural-remedies-for-nausea-5193929
Petre, Al. (2022, October 11). 17 Natural Ways to Get Rid of Nausea. Healthline. www.healthline.com/nutrition/nausea-remedies#peppermint.
Vann, M. R., (2017, July 25). 4 Natural Remedies for Nausea Relief. EverydayHealth.Com. www.everydayhealth.com/digestive-health/natural-remedies-for-nausea/
Hayley Ferut RN, BSN, IBCLC
My name is Hayley Ferut, and I have 10 years of combined experience as a Registered Nurse and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. My professional passions include birth, breastfeeding, mental health, and patient education. I strive to deliver high quality health care content while being a mom to my precious little boys. I write to educate patients and clients so they can make informed decisions about their health.
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