Herbal remedies for acid indigestion can be considered if you do not want to take antacids. Generally, as herbal remedies are natural, they are less harmful to our body. It is true that indigestion is becoming a pervasive problem in modern society. You just need to look around to get an indication. If you look at supermarket and drugstore shelves, you can find them filled with antacids. Television or radio commercials have also been heavily promoting antacids as the cure for heartburn.
An acid indigestion that persists or worsens, despite various solutions you try or adjustments you make in your diet, should not be left unattended. You should have it checked by a health professional.
To achieve proper digestion, your stomach needs to be relaxed. If you tend to overeat or eat too quickly, you are likely to suffer from indigestion. Consuming too much food at one sitting burdens the stomach; its digestive juices get diluted making them function less efficiently. Thus, you may taste the stomach acid and feel pain.
You can try herbal remedies for acid indigestion as safer alternatives to antacids. Herbal remedies have virtually little or no toxicity unlike manufactured over-the-counter medicines. These does not mean that herbs are not potent at all; if fact, some of them are. Before using any natural remedies, you should check with your doctor that it is safe for you to do so. Here are some known herbal remedies for acid indigestion:
Slippery Elm. This herb was used by early folk healers as a digestive tonic and for treatment of acid indigestion and dysentery. The relief it brings to acid indigestion derives from its healing action on the mucous membranes. Herbalists believe it soothes inflamed tissues and draws toxins and other irritants from body tissues.
Licorice. A form of licorice called deglycyrrhizinated licorice (DGL), a chewable form of the herb, is a natural antacid. Unlike a regular licorice, DGL does not have hormonal side effects. This makes DGL more effective and will not contribute to elevated blood pressures, which can be a side effect of other forms. Licorice helps fight ulcerations caused by hyperacidity.
Mint. An ancient medicinal herb, mint is a cooling diaphoretic that relieves indigestion, gas or colic, and heartburn. It can also calm nausea and vomiting. The menthol in mint appears to soothe the smooth muscle lining of the digestive tract. Some studies show peppermint also may help to prevent stomach ulcers and stimulate bile secretions.
Gentian. Gentian contains a chemical (gentianine) that stimulates the secretion of stomach acid, lending some credence to its 3,000-year old history as a digestive aid. Try it before meals. Gentian tastes very bitter, so you might want to add honey to your decoction.
Papaya (Fruit and Leaves). While papaya is not known as a herb, its plant has a surprising potency in combating digestive disorders and calming down a disturbed gastrointestinal tract. Its powerful enzyme, papain, helps to breakdown complex proteins, reducing the digestive load on the stomach.
In addition to the above suggestions, you can also try steamed cabbage. The glutamine in cabbage apparently settles an irritated stomach. Fresh cabbage juice, drank immediately after preparation, also helps in soothing. You should always chew your food well and eat in a stress-free setting to prevent acid indigestion.