Okay, I know you aren't seven anymore, but somehow even without the option of running to "Mommy" with a "tummy ache," you still end up with crazy discomfort in your stomach, maybe more frequently than you really think it should happen. However, the difference is that now you know where such things come from and can take control of the problem, right? Or if you don't, there's always this article.
- Be very aware of what you're putting into your stomach. You are no longer a little kid who can eat a whole bag of marshmallows without consequences. The best way to nail down an eating-related problem if you already have one is to try to keep track of everything you eat for a couple of weeks and track when you have stomach problems. See if you can find links between what you eat and how you feel and then try to remedy the problem.
- One of the really frequent irritants out there is pepper. Both red pepper and black pepper can be a problem, so be careful. Pay attention to spices and spicy foods. They aren't a problem for some people, but they can drive other stomachs crazy.
- Fatty foods are a really big pain to digest. If you've been having problems, try to switch to things that are easy on the stomach - lean meats and other proteins, grains, etc.
- Don't just decide to eat a whole bunch of fiber all at once. Yes, fiber will be helpful in keeping you regular and eliminating those kinds of stomach aches, but it will create other ones if you eat too much fiber too fast. (You know what I'm talking about.) Do increase your fiber, but do it a little at a time instead of all at once.
- Not all vegetables are kind to your stomach. Broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts and cabbage can all be problematic, especially if you've having problems with gas or other stomach issues. Same goes for fruits, especially apples and melons.
- Don't stuff yourself. Eat slowly so your stomach has time to digest and stops thinking it's hungry. The surest way to make yourself sick is to overeat.
- Beans aren't as big an issue as you think - you just have to make sure to cook them correctly. If you're cooking them from a can, rinse them in fresh water before you cook them. If you're soaking them and cooking them the next day, drain off the old water and cook them in fresh water to cut back on the gas problems later.
- Watch what you drink. Water will help. Milk, alcohol and coffee won't.
- Aspirin and ibuprofen are hard on your stomach. If you're taking them too often, it can really tear you up inside. Talk to your doctor about alternatives if you need them to fight major pain. Switch antacids from time to time if you're taking them - it will keep them more effective. However, don't take antacids for too long or your stomach is doomed anyway.