Unfortunately, both overindulgence and stress could lead to indigestion.

Indigestion (also known as dyspepsia) is persistent or recurrent pain or discomfort in the upper abdomen. It’s mostly triggered when you eat and isn’t caused by excess stomach acid.

Indigestion: symptoms and causes

Most people experience some symptoms of indigestion in their life. These may include:

  • Abdominal pain or discomfort
  • Bloating and a feeling of fullness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Heartburn
  • Burning sensation in the stomach or upper abdomen
  • Burping, belching and gas
  • Acidic taste

While indigestion can also be caused by conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), ulcers or gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD), lifestyle factors are often at the root of the problem.

These factors include:

  • Eating too much or too quickly
  • Eating during stressful situations
  • Eating foods with a high fat content
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Stress, anxiety and fatigue
  • Cigarette smoking

Natural remedies for indigestion

  • Probiotics, charcoal tablets and dietary fibre may also help to alleviate some symptoms of indigestion.

Always check with your doctor before taking any supplements to make sure they won’t interact with any regular medications you’re taking.

Activated charcoal is a potent natural treatment used to trap toxins and chemicals in the body, allowing them to be flushed out so the body doesn’t reabsorb them. It’s made from a variety of sources, but when used for natural healing, it’s important to select activated charcoal made from coconut shells or other natural sources. It’s used to reduce bloating and gas, lower cholesterol, treat bile flow problems safely during pregnancy, and even prevent hangovers.

Research shows that activated charcoal works better than stomach pumping (gastric lavage) in some situations.

So, how does activated charcoal work?

Activated charcoal works by trapping toxins and chemicals in its millions of tiny pores. Typically, however, it’s not used when petroleum, alcohol, lye, acids or other corrosive poisons are ingested.

Check in with your doctor

Lastly, if you’re concerned about your indigestion, and it persists after the holidays, consult your doctor to rule out any other underlying conditions that may be causing your symptoms.

This is especially important if you experience vomiting or blood in vomit, black, tarry stools, severe pain in the upper right abdomen or discomfort unrelated to eating.

References:

– MayoClinic.org. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/indigestion/basics/alternative-medicine/con-20034440

– Medicinenet.com. http://www.medicinenet.com/dyspepsia/symptoms.htm

– National Institutes of Health: Digestive Disorders Health Center: http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/indigestion/index.aspx