Dinners for upset stomach

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Maybe the flu’s not letting go, or you’ve just lost your appetite — for one reason or another, your stomach’s doing somersaults. Mine, too.

Here’s my well-tested roster of recipes to cook when I’m looking for bland, nourishing (but not boring!) food that won’t make my stomach shout:

Reheated minestra with olive oil and stale bread

(Bobbi Lin/Courtesy Food52)

Classic lentil soup (Zuppa di Lenticchie)

(Courtesy Food52)

Pancotto (Tuscan bread soup)

(Courtesy Food52)

Yogurt bread with molasses

(Eric Moran/Courtesy Food52)

Blackbird’s bread

(Mark Weinberg/Courtesy Food52)

How to make congee without a recipe

(James Ransom/Courtesy Food52)

Pasta and bean soup with kale, revisited

(Mark Weinberg/Courtesy Food52)

Anna Thomas’ green soup

(Mark Weinberg/Courtesy Food52)

Sweet self-care in a mug (good for scratchy throats, too)

(James Ransom/Courtesy Food52)

Carrots cooked forever, à la Roy Finamore

(James Ransom/Courtesy Food52)

Braised onion sauce

(Bobbi Lin/Courtesy Food52)

Filipino chicken porridge (arroz caldo)

(Bobbi Lin/Courtesy Food52)

Fan qie chao dan (tomato and eggs over rice)

(James Ransom/Courtesy Food52)

Sweet potato bake

(Linda Xiao/Courtesy Food52)

Judy Rodgers’ roasted applesauce (and savory apple charlottes)

(James Ransom/Courtesy Food52)

This story was originally published on Food52.com: What to cook when you can’t stomach much

1. Smoothie. Shake. Or Smoothie Bowl. Yup, my personal favorite is a smoothie. Otherwise known as a shake, and sometimes served as a smoothie bowl. You can make a smoothie in under five minutes and consume it in the same time. By the time the smoothie hits your stomach all those whole foods have already been broken down into tiny particles, a liquid state. So your stomach can much more quickly empty and keep things moving along. But I know what you are saying: I do not have a blender or ingredients at work! Well, why not? You certainly have access to a coffee machine at work, yes? Or a microwave? Well ask the office manager to invest in a Vitamix for the office. “Vitamix? Pretty please?”

Or if you are a school teacher or similar, save up and invest in the new Vitamix S30, a mini version of its powerful blender. You could easily store it under or locked in your desk and whip it out for lunches. And those ingredients? Instead of packing a lunch, you could pack a smoothie! Stuff some leafy greens, fruit, protein powder and a bottle of liquid in your lunchbox and blend and serve for lunch. And hopefully you have a freezer you can access for frozen ingredients.

Bonus: Usually freezers are less crowded than fridges in offices. Get recipes in my book 365 Vegan Smoothies – and order a Vitamix S30 here. Your 2015 will be a healthy, happy tummy one with these two tools!

Try these recipes:
* Frosty Pumpkinseed Sweet green Smoothie
* Peanut Butter Chocolate Shake or Smoothie Bowl (pictured above)
* Easy Energy Almond Butter Smoothie
* Kiwi Basil Smoothie
* Avocado Citrus Dreamboat Green Smoothie
* ripe raspberry smoothie
* Golden Wellness Smoothie with turmeric
* My Fave!… Trinity Superfood Shake
* Secret Ingredient Matcha Shake
* Calming Bluebird Smoothie

2. Blended Soups. Right along with smoothies, blended soups offer an easy way to consume healthy whole foods in a pre-broken down state. I am a huge fan of blended soups! And for soups, they travel very well so you can bring them in a heat-containing soup container and eat them at lunch, or re-heat as needed. Bring along some toast or bread to toast if you’d like.

Try these recipes:
* Pink Cauliflower Soup
* Easy Miso Avocado Pea Soup
* Cheezy Loaded Broccoli Soup (pictured above)
* Sweet Potato Soup with avocado – in a flash
* Blended Roasted Root Veggie Soups – carrot or sweet potato
* Creamy Carrot Ginger Soup (pictured above)
* Curried Coconut Cauliflower
* RAW Avocado Coconut Soup
* No-Cream of Mushroom
* Ginger-Sage Butternut Squash Soup

3. Avocado Toast. Avocado toast is an easy-to-digest lunch because it is rich in healthy fats and fiber, but its creamy texture is usually easy to digest.

Pair that very simply with some toast and maybe a small accent of sprouts, seeds or greens on top and you can a light, yet power-fuel sort of lunch. Tip: add plenty of lemon to your avocado toast to keep it from browning. The lemon may also aide in digestion due to its acidity.

Try these recipes:
* Epic “Toast” Post with 18 recipes
* Avocado Toast Pinwheel Platter (pictured above)
* Veggie-Loaded White Bean Avocado Salad on Toast
* Lemon Avocado Toast with Basil Pesto (pictured above)

4. Raw Chopped Salads. If you crave a salad make sure you do this: chop chop chop. By chopping the ingredients as much as possible you are aiding digestion. Just think of every chop as a chew. Instead of biting a giant carrot and chewing it from its whole state, you can chop it into small bits or strips so that your mouth does less work.

Choosing raw foods is helpful for some people because raw foods are rich in live enzymes that can help your body digest. Tip: Try not to get too complex with ingredients. Choose just a few and stick to only veggies and maybe one accent like a legume or a grain to bring more nutrient complexity to your meal.

Try these recipes:
* Mexi-Chopp Salad with tofu (pictured above)
* Power Tower Salad – chop very well + sub beans with hummus
* 5-Step Raw Kale Salad — chop veggies very well and switch out the kale for a ‘lighter’ leaf like spinach if needed
* 15 Salad Dressings
* Creamy Mustard Maple Chopped Salad (pictured above)
* Serve any of these as a salad-in-a-jar

5. Hummus. Hummus goes right up there with ‘blended’ lunches’ because a large portion of the filling, the legumes, is blended. This may help aide in digestion a bit while still adding healthy legumes to your lunchtime plan. And the great part about hummus is that you can make it from a variety of ingredients, not just chickpeas.

Try edamame, white beans, lentils, soaked nuts like cashews, chickpeas, black beans and more. You can add the hummus to a pita, wrap, bread or even paired with veggie sticks or crackers. You can add a few raw leafy greens to the hummus, which will add those live enzymes and add a modest amount of veggie goodness.

Try these recipes:
* Hummus-filled “quesadillas”
* Restaurant-Style Hummus (pictured above)
* Pumpkin Hummus
* Sweet Potato Hummus (pictured above)
* Uber-Creamy Tomato Garlic Hummus Dip
* Hummus Apple Tartine
* Spinach Hummus Pitas
* Summer-Thyme Hummus
* Hummus Spiral Wraps
* Easy 3-2-1 Hummus

Devouring fruit bowls. #ThingsVegansAreGoodAt pineapple+kiwi+cayenne+Brazil nut+mapleA video posted by Finding Vegan (@findingvegan) on Jan 3, 2015 at 11:34am PST

6. Digestion Boosters! I love this tip because you can add it to any lunch you currently love. Add a digestion booster for after or before your meal. My favorites: pineapple, kiwi, papaya, ginger. I know some people do not like to add fruit to their meals, fearing that the food combining is off and will interfere with digestion.

If this is you, give your meal a half hour or so and them try a chunk of pineapple or a sliced kiwi. The digestive enzyme bromelain in the pineapple may help you digest your lunch. Eating pineapple may help relieve indigestion after a big or hearty meal. Try it out and see if it helps you! I also love kiwi because though it does not contain bromelain it is rich in enzymes. So much so that these three fruits (pineapple, kiwi and papaya) are often used as meat tenderizers. Now obviously I am not a meat eater, but I certainly will let those fruits tenderize my plant-based eats!

Ginger is another great digestion stimulator. Try adding fresh raw ginger to your meals or even ginger chews or fresh ginger tea after lunch. Take a bottle of fresh ginger tea to work!

Try these recipes:
* Fresh Ginger Tea
* Pineapple and Papaya
* Ginger Crinkle Cookies

7. Get Nutty. And lastly, nut butters are brilliant for lunching. Spread them on toast and bread for sandwiches or even wrap them up into wraps. Peanut butter and almond butters are classic, but you could also try seed butters and exotic blends like pumpkinseed and cashew.

Try these recipes:
* PB&J Club (pictured above)
* Smashed Nut Butter Banana Toast (pictured above)
* Curry-Cashew Butter Dip or Spread
* Nut Butter Wrap with banana
* Maple-Coconut Cinnamon Almond Butter (pictured above)

8. Bars. Homemade nut and seed and grain bars are great for an easy-to-digest lunch because while they provide high nutrient density and high calories, they are not providing much bulk. Nuts and seeds have a high density of calories, so you are fueling your body without over-filling your tank, so to speak.

Less bulk in your stomach means it may feel less stressed during digestion. Maybe. Like I said, every tummy is different! But bars just may be a good way to fuel without over-doing it on your digestion needs.

Try these recipes:
* Roadtrip Bars (pictured above)
* Coconut-Almond Kamut Bars
* Peanut Butter Butterscotch Bars (pictured above)
* Energy Bites or Mini Bars
* No-Bake Double Chocolate Oat Bars – video included

9. Be a BRATT! When all else fails, stick to the long-time digestion accronym. BRATT. Bananas. Rice. Applesauce. Tea. Toast. But get creative with this intrepretation! Try bananas, yes. Maybe bananas on some nut butter toast or in a smoothie. Rice can easily be worked into a lunchtime meal. And applesauce could meal any fruit puree. Try berry-sauce! Or even try a veggie sauce or dressing puree if you want to get really creative. You could even throw in puddings here. Some people find chia pudding to be helpful for digestion, others the opposite. Tea, could be any warm liquid that may settle your stomach and warm up your circulation, inspiring digestion. Try that ginger tea above! And toast means that crispy bread is usually easier to digest than fresh. I do not have the scientific explanation for this, but I think the heating breaks down the molecules? Total guess, but I think it is true! Toast can be any gluten-free or gluten-containing bread paired with any of the above options.

Try these recipes:
* 60-Second Apple Sauce (pictured above)
* RICE veggies and tofu stir-fry — just serve with mostly rice and silken tofu
* Kale Fried Rice Bowl — a heartier rice dish (pictured above)
* Banana Apple Bread with almond butter
* Banana Bread with dark chocolate

10. Fermented Foods! Add some digestion-enhancing fermented foods to your meal. The goods: sauerkraut, kombucha, yogurt, tempeh, miso, pickles!

Try these recipes:
* Tempeh Reuben – just keep the sauerkraut RAW! (pictured)
* Tempeh Triangles over carrot slaw
* What is kombucha?
* Miso Pea Soup

The Most Important Digestion Tip. I hope these ideas have helped you a bit! Happy lunch and remember, your stomach is very sensitive to your mood. So above all, try to keep your lunch hour calm and free of stimulus and stress whenever possible. A calm mood is the best way to help your tummy do its thing!

*Ask Your Doctor! And as always check with your doctor is you are having ANY digestion issues! He or her can give you insight and advice. Do not be shy, digestive issues are nothing to ignore, they can truly effect your everyday life.

7 Delicious, Anti-Inflammatory Recipes for a Happy Gut

Other lifestyle interventions, such as stress management and adequate sleep, are also helpful.

These seven delicious recipes are anti-inflammatory and tasty, getting you one bite closer to a happy gut and healthy you.

Grilled chicken thighs with pineapple-mint salsa

To me, there’s nothing better than the crispy skin off of chicken thighs. This recipe takes them to the next level with a dose of tangy pineapple-mint salsa.

Thighs are a relatively inexpensive cut of chicken, so this recipe is cost-effective, too. But the superstar ingredient is pineapple. It has an abundance of vitamin C, B vitamins, and minerals — and contains a special enzyme called bromelain, which helps support digestion.

Get the recipe!

Grass-fed beef and veggie burgers

Why grass-fed beef? Cows are ruminants and meant to eat mostly grasses. Yet, our modern agricultural system has turned to cheaper ways of feeding cows, like wheat, corn, soy, and by-products, which also make the cows get bigger faster.

When the cow eats foods it shouldn’t, it becomes unhealthy — just like us.

Properly fed cows equal healthy cows, and healthy cows equals healthy meat for us.

This colorful recipe beats a regular old burger because it’s also filled with veggies loaded with fiber and antioxidant power.

Get the recipe!

Broccoli cauliflower soup

This tastes like an indulgent cream-based soup, but instead uses dairy-free coconut milk. The recipe fits the criteria for many healing diets like paleo and AIP (autoimmune protocol).

Broccoli and cauliflower are both part of the brassica family, a nutrient powerhouse. Also called “cruciferous vegetables,” these goodies are especially high in carotenoids, which are the precursor to making vitamin A and are touted for their many health benefits.

Another star of this dish is bone broth.

Bone broth is incredibly soothing to our gastrointestinal system. It’s a dense source of amino acids, minerals, collagen, and other substances that help to repair the gut lining. Try making it at home for the most cost-effective and delicious broth.

This soup gets bonus points because it’s freezable, which is perfect for fatigue-filled days.

Get the recipe!

Crispy drumsticks with balsamic fig sauce

How do you dress up drumsticks to give them a gourmet edge? Figs!

In most places, fresh figs are seasonal, so get ’em while you can. Figs are a source of potassium, among other minerals, and fiber, which supports regular digestion. And they’re so tasty — whether they’re sliced up in salads or used in a heartier dish like this one.

Get the recipe!

Basic broiled salmon

Scared of cooking fish? This recipe shows you how to make salmon in a simple, less intimidating way.

There are so many benefits to salmon. Most commonly talked about are its high amounts of omega-3 fats.

Omega-3s are anti-inflammatory and that alone makes salmon a perfect food for those living with chronic illness. This healthy source of protein is also rich in B vitamins and vitamin D.

Serve with your favorite sides, and don’t forget the lemon wedges!

Get the recipe!

Spaghetti squash with avocado basil dressing

Spaghetti squash is a hidden gem among squashes. You can make it as a side dish or into a main meal because of its similarity to spaghetti.

I love this recipe because it incorporates diverse nutrient profiles, and the bright sauce adds a burst of creaminess from the avocado.


For the main dish:

  • 1 spaghetti squash
  • 1 lb. cooked chicken breast
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 bundle asparagus, steamed and chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil

For the sauce:

  • 2 avocados
  • 1/4 cup and 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 3/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 clove garlic


  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F (191°C).
  2. Slice the spaghetti squash in half (I do it the long way, but both ways work), and scoop out the seeds. Drizzle with a little bit of olive oil and a pinch of sea salt. Place face down on a baking sheet.
  3. Put into the preheated oven for 45-60 minutes or longer, until the skin is easily pierced and you can shred the insides.
  4. While the spaghetti squash is cooking, steam and slice the asparagus, cut the chicken breast, and halve the grape tomatoes.
  5. To make the sauce, add the avocado and 1/4 cup of olive oil into a food processor or blender. Blend, then add the basil leaves, sea salt, garlic, and more olive oil by the tablespoon as needed.
  6. When the spaghetti squash is done, shred the insides and add to a large serving bowl. Add the ingredients you chopped, plus 1 tbsp. of olive oil and 1 tsp. sea salt and toss.
  7. Drizzle over the sauce before enjoying.

Pan-seared lemon turmeric chicken salad

Turmeric is a spice that’s been used medicinally for years, especially in Ayurvedic medicine. Curcumin is the substance in turmeric that provides a potent reduction in inflammation.

Adding turmeric to your food is a simple way to kick it up with an anti-inflammatory punch! Pair it with lemon, another anti-inflammatory food that’s packed with vitamin C (crucial for the immune system) and helps with many digestive ailments.

Serves: 4

For the salad:

  • 1 medium sweet potato
  • 1 lb. chicken breast
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • zest of 1 lemon, plus a drizzle of lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 6 cups fresh spinach

For the dressing:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/8 tsp. freshly cracked black pepper
  1. Use an already roasted sweet potato, or roast one medium sweet potato at 350°F (177°C) for one hour, remove from the skin, and cut into rounds.
  2. While the sweet potato is baking, set a large skillet on medium heat. Season the chicken on both sides with 1 tsp. sea salt, turmeric, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Once the skillet is hot, add 1 tbsp. olive oil and add the chicken to the pan.
  3. Flip the chicken after about 10 minutes, then cook for another 10 minutes. When finished, slice into strips.
  4. Slice the strawberries.
  5. Add the spinach to a large salad bowl. Place the sweet potato, chicken, and strawberries on top.
  6. Now mix the dressing. In a small bowl, add 1/4 cup olive oil, lemon juice, 1/4 tsp. sea salt, and black pepper. Mix well and drizzle over the salad before serving.

Who says you can’t eat amazing food AND keep your gut happy and healthy?!

Alexa Federico is a nutritional therapy practitioner, real food and autoimmune blogger, and author of “The Complete Guide to Crohn’s Disease & Ulcerative Colitis: A Road Map to Long-Term Healing,” now available on Amazon. When she’s not testing tasty recipes, you can find her enjoying her New England backyard or reading with a cup of tea. Alexa’s main hub is her blog, Girl in Healing, and she loves to show a piece of her world through Instagram.

There are some celebrities—regardless of gender—that really make you think: Man, what do they eat?! Chances are, this is one (of many) thoughts that will run through your head when you take a look at Chris Hemsworth. got the low-down on what the Avengers: Endgame star uses for fuel straight from his chef, food expert Sergio Perera. While he says Hemsworth isn’t exactly a picky eater, there are a few rules he follows using easy-to-digest-foods.

“Always aim for wholesome and nutrient-dense foods; always fresh and bright,” says Perera. “Limit the use of boxed and processed foods.” (The exceptions are high-quality protein powders and supplements.)

Perera also has some specific recommendations for recipes on nights when you get home late (you know, after a long day of fighting bad guys). You want to satisfy your grumbling stomach, but you don’t want to be up all night digesting your meal. So what does he recommend on these nights? Seafood. “I feel that for night time, easier proteins such as seafood is much better to process and assimilate before going to bed,” he says, specifically calling out salmon, trout, sardines, mackerel, shrimp, scallops squid, and mussels. (Not-so-surprising fun fact: Perera is from Spain, in the Mediterranean region.)

5 seafood dinners using easy-to-digest foods

Photo: The Iron You

1. Easy ginger, chili, and lemon salmon

As Perera points out, when eating a late night meal, making something that’s easy on your digestive system is key, which is where the salmon comes in here. But besides the protein, ginger and lemon are both all-stars for gut health, helping the food settle even more easily.

Photo: Half-Baked Harvest

2. Honey butter blackened scallops with herby polenta

Served over creamy polenta, scallops provide the kind of protein Perera would approve of. Polenta is so fine that it’s almost a liquid. That means your stomach won’t have to do much work breaking it down. Pro tip: Be liberal with the paprika to really amp up the flavor.

Photo: 8th and Lake

3. Avocado and shrimp ceviche

Papaya, a key ingredient in this recipe, is another food that’s good for digestion. It contains bromelain, an enzyme that helps the digestive system break down food. Avocado makes this seafood dish even more satiating without overloading the stomach.

Photo: The Foodie Dietitian

4. Greek salmon gyros with beet tzatziki

All this dinner takes to whip up is six ingredients and about 15 minutes. Salmon is, of course, the focus, but instead of your typical olive oil finishing, beet tzatziki, olives, feta cheese, and onion give a more flavorful taste.

Photo: Hummusapien

5. Seared fish with zucchini farro and tomato tapenade

As far as grains go, rice is easier on the stomach than pasta because it’s smaller. And that seared white fish is lifted straight from Perera’s list of go-tos.

Here are some other ways to improve your digestion. And if you still wake up feeling bloated, give one of these tonics a try.

10 Best Foods for a Sensitive Stomach

Having a stomach that is sensitive to mainstream foods doesn’t have to keep you down. There are plenty of options out there to satisfy hunger pangs without sacrificing flavor, taste, and variety. Here are ten of the best foods for a sensitive stomach:

1. Yogurt

A lot of dairy products can cause havoc in a person’s stomach, especially one that is particularly sensitive. However, yogurt is not one of them. Yogurt contains all of the “good” bacteria that help keep a person healthy – just make sure the yogurt you’re buying actually has this good bacterium in it. Keep an eye out for “live and active cultures” or “probiotics” next time you’re at the grocery store.

2. Bananas

Ever notice the types of food that are handed out before marathons? More often than not, bananas are one of them. This is because they are very easily digestible and gentle on a person’s stomach. As an added bonus they’re also a great source of energy.

3. Whole Grains

Did you know that the average person needs about 20 to 30 grams of fiber a day in their diet? Yet most only probably consume around 12g of the needed amount. Wheat bread, oats, and brown rice are just a few examples of whole grains that can pack a fiber punch and aide in digestion.

4. Ginger

Ginger is a spice that has been used to help calm upset stomachs, feelings of nausea, bouts of vomiting, gas, and motion sickness for centuries. Add it to your tea for soothing relief to your sensitive stomach concerns.

5. Sourdough

Sourdough bread can provide a much-needed break for a stomach that is sensitive. Sourdough bread is fermented, which makes it more easily digestible. It can be a great substitute for those with gluten allergies who can’t risk a meal with wheat bread.

6. Greens

Keep an eye out for foods that boost rich amounts of magnesium. Magnesium helps cut down hydrochloric acid secretion and this helps keep your stomach sensitivity in check. Foods such as spinach, nuts and seeds, soy beans, and avocados have magnesium.

7. Pineapple/Papaya

Both pineapple and papaya can encourage a person’s natural digestion. They are also great in relieving symptoms of constipation because they both have enzymes which break down proteins easily.

8. Applesauce

Applesauce works a lot like bananas in that they contain a fair amount of pectin. Pectin can help ease the stomach, and since applesauce is already cooked down, it will be easier to digest than a regular apple.

9. Lean Meats

When meats are heavy in fat they can really mess us a person’s natural digestion and cause an upset stomach. Leaner meats and lean fish that are steamed will be far gentler on the stomach.

10. Scrambled Eggs

Scrambled eggs are a common go-to for those suffering from an upset stomach for a reason. They are light while being consumed and gentle on the stomach during digestion. Be sure not to over-season scrambled eggs if you are experiencing stomach issues, this will only further exacerbate the issue.

7 Helpful Foods To Eat If You Have A Sensitive Stomach

If you’re someone who frequently experiences an upset stomach or indigestion, you know how particular you have to be about what you eat. Even though at times it can be hard to tell what’s right for you, you know you have to opt for foods that are OK to eat if you have a sensitive stomach, and you avoid anything that can have you running for the bathroom. Nothing is worse than a debilitating stomach ache after every time you eat, so it’s important to tailor your diet to be filled with foods that sooth your stomach rather than cause it to rumble in pain.

“Eating out or just eating throughout a typical day can be a complete and total nightmare if you suffer from stomach issues caused by certain foods,” says Maggie Michalczyk, RD over email. “The thought of trying a new restaurant or cuisine becomes nauseating when you think about how your stomach might feel afterwards.”

A sensitive stomach can be a result of the foods you eat, acid reflux, or even anxiety, but if you know you are at risk of indigestion, it’s wise to stick to foods that make you feel good after eating them. If you have a sensitive stomach, try incorporating these seven foods into your diet, which can help ease your digestion and are easy on your body.

1. Kombucha

“This fermented probiotic drink is a total gut saver,” says Michalczyk. “Made up of B vitamins and as many probiotic strands as found in many supplement forms, this tart and bubbly combination really takes the edge off of an upset stomach. The bacteria found in the drink introduce beneficial bacteria to your stomach, essentially balancing your digestive system and keep stomach acids within the right ranges.”

2. Ginger

“Ginger contains gingerol, a substance with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties,” says holistic nutritionist Karen Brennan, MSW, NC over email. “It can ease indigestion and stomach discomfort. Use it in tea, mince some and add to vegetable dishes or suck on mini candied ginger.”

3. Sauerkraut


“It turns out the Germans and the Polish knew what they were doing all along with this one,” says Michalczyk. “Sauerkraut is bursting with lactic acid bacteria, similar to the bacteria found in kombucha and other fermented foods that aim to boost digestive health.” Made with fermented cabbage, sauerkraut is a great addition to salads and sandwiches.

4. Kefir

D Dipasupil/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Kefir is another fermented food beneficial for digestive health. “I consume a cup every morning to help keep my digestive system healthy,” says Brian Tanzer, nutritionist at Vitamin Shoppe, over email. According to WebMD, kefir is used for poor digestion, upset stomach, lactose intolerance, and diarrhea.

5. Turmeric

“Turmeric contains a compound called curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory properties, so it’s very good for an irritated and inflamed gut,” says Brennan. “You can mince some and add to tea, curry dishes, or sauté into vegetable dishes.”

6. Papaya

Papaya is not only a delicious tasting fruit, but it contains natural enzymes that can help ease your stomach problems. ” contains the substance papain, which is an enzyme that helps to break down protein and will help in the maintenance of digestion,” says Nesochi Okeke Igbokwe, M.D. over email.

7. Oatmeal

“Oatmeal is quite gentle on the stomach and it is a good source of whole grains and soluble fiber which promotes digestion,” says Igbokwe. Pair it with other high-fiber foods such as berries for double the stomach-soothing properties.

Everyone reacts differently to certain foods, so try these foods out to see which work best for your body. “If you are frequently having issues with a sensitive stomach, keep a food diary and determine which items give you the most problems,” says Igbokwe. “Speak to your doctor, and discuss which foods are best for the specific gastrointestinal symptoms you experience.”

Want more women’s health coverage? Check out Bustle’s new podcast, Honestly Though, which tackles all the questions you’re afraid to ask.

Images: (6)

The best foods to eat for an upset stomach

The first meal after an upset stomach is a tricky one because you don’t want to eat anything that will further aggravate your digestive tract. Luckily, there are some rules of thumb you can follow when picking what to eat.

For registered dietitian Lauren McNeill, the most important thing is sticking to foods that are high in soluble fibre and low in insoluble fibre.

“This is because soluble fibre may be helpful when we are experiencing diarrhea, whereas insoluble fibre can aggravate diarrhea and make it worse,” she said.

“When considering foods that are higher in soluble fibre, we also want to stick to more bland foods. This is because strong smells can make nausea worse.”

“Stick to foods such as bananas, rice, applesauce, toast, crackers and oatmeal.”

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READ MORE: Reasons why you may feel sick after eating — and what to do about it

In the hours after a severely upset stomach, it’s important to focus on getting plenty of fluids to “replenish what we might be losing in vomit or diarrhea.”

“Ensuring that you are drinking enough water, herbal teas or warm, broth-based soups is important,” said McNeill.

She also recommends foods that will help you replenish electrolytes.

“This can be as simple as choosing bananas — which are high in potassium — a vegetable soup or avocado on toast with some salt.”

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However, this does not mean sports drinks, McNeill says, because they’re high in sugar. Sports drinks, along with caffeine, are known to aggravate diarrhea and upset digestion.

Despite the age-old adage, ginger ale isn’t a good option, either. It doesn’t have much actual ginger in it — and that’s the ingredient that helps treat nausea, registered dietitian Amanda Li previously told Global News.

“When it comes to an upset stomach, it’s the ginger component or the actual bio-active compounds within ginger ,” Li told Global News. “In , it’s probably just natural flavours that they add to the soda and then a whole ton of sugar and carbonated water.” Story continues below advertisement

READ MORE: Put down the pop — Why ginger ale isn’t the cure for upset stomachs

How much you eat depends on a host of factors, including “the type of gastrointestinal issue you’re experiencing, the length of time you’ve had the issue, your appetite level as well as your likes and dislikes,” said Shahzadi Devje, registered dietitian and host of The Morocco Real Food Adventure.

“What’s important is to keep a close eye on your symptoms eat the suggested foods for nourishment in small amounts to assess tolerance.”

The next time you have an upset stomach, reach for these foods instead.


Ginger is Devje’s go-to spice when it comes to a sore stomach because it’s been used “for thousands of years for medicinal purposes.”

“We typically know of ginger as the go-to spice to help ease symptoms of nausea,” she said. “It’s thought that specific compounds found in ginger may ease irritation of the gastrointestinal tract.”

Fennel has also been shown to “calm an upset stomach and ease symptoms of gas and bloating.”

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Peppermint is one of the most popular remedies for stomachaches, but Devje is skeptical.

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“Whilst peppermint has been shown to tame certain digestive issues — like indigestion, gas and bloating — it may aggravate others, like heartburn,” she said.

“Peppermint’s impressive ability to soothe conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome and nausea is well documented.”


If you’re in the mood for something on the sweet side, there are two fruits in particular that can help soothe your stomach: bananas and apples, when blended into a sauce.

“It’s fair to say bananas offer benefits beyond their potassium content,” Devje said. “With a high fibre content, bananas are a good choice to help manage symptoms of diarrhea.”

As well, Devje says pectin — “the thickening fibre” — has been shown to prevent the over-stimulation of the bowel, thus slowing “the frequency of diarrhea.” Applesauce also offers a high pectin content.


“Toast isn’t an age-old myth,” said Devje. “Besides bananas and applesauce, rice and toast are included in what’s referred to as the BRAT diet — an acronym for bananas, rice, applesauce and toast.”

READ MORE: What are stomach ulcers? Here’s what you to know

Devje said the diet is a mix of “nourishing and bland foods” to help ease an upset stomach.

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Other plain foods you can add to your list would be potatoes, oatmeal and crackers.

“These types of bland foods are generally easier to tolerate and don’t put added stress on your gastrointestinal system,” she said.


Soup is a good option, but stick to those with a broth base as opposed to a cream one.

“This will help keep you hydrated if you have low appetite or you’re struggling to keep food down,” said Devje.

“Just remember to keep it plain and simple. Avoid adding any spices or beans or lentils, which may cause further discomfort.”

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Probiotic-rich foods

Foods like yogurt may not be your first pick when you have a stomachache, but probiotics could bring relief.

“They can help to restore the balance of good and bad bacteria in your gut, which can control symptoms of an upset stomach,” Devje said.

“Probiotic-rich foods such as fermented vegetables, kefir, kombucha and sauerkraut decrease the number of bad bacteria — which can cause inflammation and discomfort — in your gut.”

— With files from Laura Hensley

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During the holidays, there are plenty of things that can offset the tummy. Usually it’s rich food, but too much fibre, anxiety, processed food and other GI issues can make the holidays a holy pain for people with nausea. Luckily, one can fight nausea the same way one causes it… With food! In the same way some foods upset your stomach, others can be soothing, and even leave your digestive system better than they found it.

This holiday season, mix up your decadent foods with some of these gut-settling recipes to calm down the tummy, courtesy of the Food Monster App.


1. Ginger Elixir: An Ayurvedic Digestive Drink

Source: Ginger Elixir: An Ayurvedic Digestive Drink

Akshata Sheelvant‘s Ginger Elixir: An Ayurvedic Digestive Drink acts wonders to fire up our digestive system. Good digestion is the cornerstone of health and well-being according to Ayurveda. When our digestive system is working well, we absorb all the necessary nutrients from the food we eat, enjoy healthy circulation and have a good robust immunity to diseases.

2. Sweet Potato, Carrot, and Leek Soup

Source: Sweet Potato, Carrot, and Leek Soup

This Sweet Potato, Carrot, and Leek Soup by Clémence Moulaert is made from sliced, toasted, buttered and dipped. Simple, and good for the gut.


3. Sweet Potato Pumpkin Soup

Source: Sweet Potato Pumpkin Soup

The Sweet Potato Pumpkin Soup by Wendy Irene is festive, tastes great and you can think of it like a big bowl of health benefits. I can’t wait for you to give it a try!


4. Hearty Purple Potato Stew

Source: Hearty Purple Potato Stew

Wendy Irene‘s Hearty Purple Potato Stew can use sliced avocado is the perfect accompaniment to add to the top of the right before serving. The flavors mesh beautifully and it adds a nice creamy touch of healthy fat to keep you happy and satisfied. The rich, dark reddish-purple color of the soup is not only beautiful, it’s swimming in antioxidants.


5. Easy Roasted Root Veggies

Source: Easy Roasted Root Veggies

This Easy Roasted Root Veggies recipe by Pauline Hanuise is a healthy and easy vegan recipe, perfect to warm you up. If you feel a bit ‘airy’ this is the perfect recipe as this will make you feel more grounded. Perfect before an exam or a public talk and so simple to prepare.

6. Sautéed Beet Red Greens

Source: Sautéed Beet Red Greens

Rinku Bhattacharya‘s Sautéed Beet Red Greens are tasty and simple! If you do want ways to use up some winter vegetables, this is a nice and simple way to do just that!

7. Warm Potato Salad With Spinach and Chickpeas

Source: Warm Potato Salad With Spinach and Chickpeas

One Green Planet‘s Warm Potato Salad With Spinach and Chickpeas is the classic potato salad – mix up some boiled potatoes with mayonnaise and mustard, and voilà! But, what’s a person to do if she wants to add more veggies and cut out the fattening mayo? Enter this warm potato salad: it’s cooked in a skillet with the addition of onions, peppers, mushrooms, and chickpeas. Adding fresh rosemary along with a few other spices brings out the flavors very nicely. Chickpeas make this salad more filling, so you can serve it as a meal, not just a side. Feeling adventurous? Throw this salad on a bed of greens, or wrap it in a whole-grain tortilla with some salsa for a tasty and compact lunch!


8. Spring Kale and Dill Soup With Rice

Source: Spring Kale and Dill Soup With Rice

Dill has a delightfully fresh and citrus-like flavor which, in Zsu Dever‘s very quick and easy Spring Kale and Dill Soup With Rice , is accentuated with a squeeze of lemon juice added at the end. The beans bring a layer of creaminess as well as a boost of protein. The rice thickens the soup and adds more texture. As for kale, it is always a welcome addition not only because it boosts nutrition, but also because the hint of its bitterness complements the dill. A full circle of flavors.

9. Mint Cacao Kiss

Source: Mint Cacao Kiss

Peppermint is great for taming an upset tummy, and when Emily von Euw‘s creamy green Mint Cacao Kiss is paired with crunchy cacao nibs, you’ve got one glass of “holy delicious!”

10. Vegetable Paella Risotto

Source: Vegetable Paella Risotto

Kristen Genton‘s Vegetable Paella Risotto This fusion dish combines the best of the worlds of paella and risotto into one seriously delicious and comforting meal. It has a creamy texture like risotto and the savory flavors of paella without the dairy or seafood. What’s the secret? Smoked paprika. This dinner entrée is so flavorful, packed with vegetables, and not to mention, easier than traditional risotto.

If you enjoy articles like this, check out 5 Simple Foods That Quickly Relieve Stomach Cramps and Aid in Digestion. We also highly recommend downloading our Food Monster App, which is available for iPhone, and can also be found on Instagram and Facebook. The app has more than 15,000 plant-based, allergy-friendly recipes, and subscribers gain access to new recipes every day. Check it out!

For more Vegan Food, Health, Recipe, Animal, and Life content published daily, don’t forget to subscribe to the One Green Planet Newsletter!

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