Tips for The Best Stomach Flu Remedy to Get You Back On Your Feet
Conventional wisdom says that gastroenteritis, more commonly known as stomach flu (although it’s not really a flu at all) should be treated with sips of cold, clear soda, or by sucking on popsicles. Unfortunately, this kind of stomach flu remedy can often make the situation worse.
When your digestive tract is violently emptying itself, instinct tells you to push small amounts of fluids to avoid dehydration. However, during a bout of stomach flu, your entire digestive system is compromised, and cold beverages, as well as raw foods, tend to make things worse instead of making them better. This is why you should not consider them a proper stomach flu remedy.
While you certainly do want to avoid dehydration, your body doesn’t just need fluids, it needs electrolytes. Unfortunately, most sodas and other flavored beverages offer sugar and high-fructose corn syrup instead, which your body then has to dilute, pulling water from your cells, making you even more dehydrated.
The most common cause of stomach flu is a viral infection, which can’t be treated with antibiotics – though it can also be bacterial in nature. Either way, the best course of action is to support your body as it rids itself of the invader.
Stomach Flu Remedy Tips for Staying Hydrated
It is important to avoid dehydration when your digestive system is working overtime to clear itself, but it’s also important to allow your muscles to recover. Trying to eat or drink too soon after vomiting can trigger more vomiting. Wait two to three hours, then take small sips of an electrolyte solution as tolerated.
The best-known electrolyte solution is Gatorade, but there are plenty of options, many of which you can make up yourself. The simplest version is a pinch of sea salt stirred into a glass of water, but it certainly isn’t the only option. Here are some other ways you can make your stomach flu remedy and help your body recover from a bout with a tummy bug. Remember that in Adrenal Fatigue, the body is generally low in salt. Hydrating with water without simultaneous salt replenishment can lead a condition called dilutional hyponatremia. This can be serious.
Chicken soup is excellent, but most varieties of commercial chicken soup contain ingredients you don’t necessarily want, and may be lacking in nutritional value. Bone broth If you choose not to make your own bone broth, check the ingredients label to make sure you are getting a good quality product. Steer clear of products that list oils or natural chicken flavor, which may be nothing more than MSG.
There is a reason why ginger is a go-to stomach flu remedy for morning sickness and other digestive ills. Ginger is warming and healing to the digestive tract. Cut an inch or so of ginger into thin slices and add to boiling water. Allow to steep for 10 to 30 minutes, depending on how strong you prefer it. Add a squeeze of fresh lemon, a pinch of sea salt, and a drizzle of raw honey to keep your electrolytes up.
Store-bought Gatorade is okay, but it comes loaded with artificial flavors and colors – not to mention the high sugar content. Make your own stomach flu remedy with coconut water, sea salt and trace mineral drops. Add some raw honey and fresh juice for flavor.
Stomach Flu Remedy Tips for Healing
Staying hydrated is the first concern in recovering from stomach flu. Once your digestive system has settled enough that you can tolerate fluids easily and dehydration is no longer a concern, you need to concentrate on regaining your strength with probiotics, activated charcoal, and highly nutritious, easy-to-digest foods.
Homemade probiotic ginger soda is a great way to get your probiotics, but if you don’t happen to have a batch made up, take a dose of high-quality probiotic supplement. If taking the supplement doesn’t send your stomach into revolt, take another dose every half hour or so for a few hours until you feel better. Do note that excessive probiotic intake can lead to constipation and even trigger adrenal crashes for those who are in advanced stages.
Activated charcoal is often used in hospitals to treat cases of poisoning and overdose. It works by adsorbing contaminants and toxins so they can be safely and easily removed from the body. Adsorption differs from absorption in that the contaminant adheres to the surface of the charcoal molecule rather than being pulled into and assimilated by the charcoal. It is thought that activated charcoal works on the bacteria, virus, or other invaders that cause the symptoms of stomach flu. Talk to your doctor about how much to take and how often. Adults can swallow activated charcoal capsules, while the capsule can be opened and poured into a drink or yogurt for children.
For the first few days after stomach flu, it’s important to allow the digestive system to rest as much as possible. This doesn’t mean you have to fast, but should focus on easily digested, highly nutritious foods. Raw or cold foods will tax your digestive system, as will heavy foods. Broths and soups are excellent for helping you recover quickly. Try a porridge made from rice cooked with at least five times as much chicken stock and simmer for at least an hour. Add ginger, carrots, leeks, and plenty of garlic for extra nutrition. Garlic stimulates the immune system to activate macrophages – specific immune cells that attack and consume foreign bodies, including those that cause stomach flu.
Preventing Stomach Flu
Once you’ve been through a bout of stomach flu, you want to make sure you never have to go through it again. There are a few things you can do to keep your digestive tract strong and able to fight invaders more effectively.
It is important to understand that stomach flu, more accurately known as gastroenteritis, is NOT related to influenza. It doesn’t matter where you stand on the flu shot, it will not protect you from stomach flu.
If you’ve been exposed to stomach flu, don’t wait to boost your immune system. Vitamins C (1,000 mg or more) and D (2,000 IU or more) are excellent immune boosters. There are various forms and delivery systems available in Vitamin C. Pure ascorbic acid should be avoided due to its acidic and “hype” effect. The liposomal form (such as Liponano C) is best as it offers the most bioavailability without the diarrhea effect associated with to ascorbic acid. Those with advanced adrenal fatigue should avoid Ester-C which contains calcium ascorbates. Digestive enzymes and probiotics will help strengthen the digestive tract so it can more effectively handle the invader. Eating plenty of garlic can also stimulate the immune system to be ready to deal with the viruses or bacteria that cause the symptoms.
© Copyright 2016 Michael Lam, M.D. All Rights Reserved.