How To Get Rid Of Sour Stomach: Top Home Remedies For Sour Stomach

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We’ve all experienced that uncomfortable feeling: nausea, diarrhea, or heartburn, to name a few. We usually refer to it as an ‘upset stomach’ or a ‘sour stomach’. It’s generally not dangerous, although it can be very uncomfortable. So we just put up with it and wait for it to go away, or distract ourselves by taking a nap or doing another relaxing activity. But have you ever thought about what is actually causing your discomfort? Why is your stomach hurting? And what can you do to help relieve the pain?

What Is Sour Stomach?

You might be wondering what is sour stomach. Sour stomach, upset stomach, and indigestion are all names for dyspepsia (yes, I have never referred to it like that either). It means that stomach acid has come into contact with the lining of your digestive system, causing inflammation to occur. Indigestion is characterized by pain and/or discomfort in the upper abdomen. It’s fairly common and can affect people for a number of reasons.

What Causes Sour Stomach? Sour Stomach Causes Explained

Side view of woman exercising.

Exercising after eating can cause a sour stomach.

The causes for experiencing sour stomach include:

  • Eating too much – which can cause acid reflux, or stomach acid in the esophagus
  • Eating too quickly
  • Lying down right after you finish eating, particularly if you are lying face down
  • Diet – eating spicy, fatty or greasy foods, or consuming too much alcohol, caffeine, or soda
  • Hunger (yes; it isn’t only overeating that could be making you feel sick! If you haven’t eaten in a while, you could also experience symptoms of sour stomach)
  • Too much exercise after eating
  • Bad eating habits – not only eating unhealthily, but also at irregular intervals
  • Too little exercise
  • Swallowing air – also known as aerophagia
  • Eating late at night
  • Stress/anxiety
  • Too little sleep
  • Smoking
  • Obesity

Also, no headstands or cartwheels right after you eat! That is likely to cause sour stomach.

At times, stomach upset could also be a result of something more serious, for example:

  • Gallstones
  • Peptic ulcers – when digestive juices irritate the digestive lining
  • Gastritis – inflammation in the stomach lining
  • Gastroenteritis – food infection or poisoning
  • Stomach cancer
  • Infection
  • Pancreatitis – inflammation of the pancreas
  • Celiac disease
  • Hiatus hernia

Keep an eye on your situation. Indigestion is common occasionally. But if you are living a healthy lifestyle but experience frequent sour stomach symptoms, it might be best to discuss the issue with your doctor.

Sour Stomach Symptoms Breakdown

Woman with eyes closed holding forehead.

Sour stomach includes a variety of symptoms.

Stomach pain isn’t the only symptom of sour stomach. There are other sour stomach symptoms as well, such as:

  • Nausea and/or vomiting – caused by food traveling in the wrong direction due to slow digestion
  • Metallic or acidic taste in the mouth, or regurgitation – when stomach acid rises to your throat, leaving a bitter taste in your mouth
  • Heartburn – caused by too much gastric acid, which then goes up to your esophagus, leading to a burning feeling in your throat or chest area
  • Stomach gurgling – caused by excess gas mixing with the food in your stomach
  • Bloating – too much food and gas can make your stomach swell uncomfortably and can also make you feel unpleasantly full, even if you haven’t eaten a lot or haven’t eaten in a while
  • Belching – which is caused by swallowing too much air
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation – fatty foods can slow down digestion, leading to constipation

In general, these are common symptoms and are not overly a cause for concern, except to possibly indicate that healthy changes to your diet or eating habits may be necessary. However, if symptoms persist for longer than two weeks, or if you experience intense pain in addition to one or more of the following symptoms, it may indicate something more serious and warrants a visit to your doctor:

  • Black stools
  • Vomiting
  • Yellowed eyes and/or skin
  • Physical exertion accompanied by chest pain
  • Loss of appetite or weight
  • Chest pain radiation to the jaw, arm or neck
  • Shortness of breath
  • Excessive sweating

Sour stomach is common and should pass on its own. If it doesn’t, or you are worried about the symptoms you are experiencing, you should always seek medical assistance.

What To Do For A Sour Stomach? Top 5 Sour Stomach Remedies

There are so many ways to alleviate the symptoms of sour stomach, but here are my top 5:

1. Ginger

Ginger’s anti-inflammatory properties help relieve symptoms of indigestion like nausea and cramping.

2. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apples and bottle of apple cider vinegar.

Apple cider vinegar helps with digestion and fighting against bacteria.

If you’re suffering from constipation, drink one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar mixed with one cup of water around 20 minutes before you eat. This will help increase your stomach acid, aiding in digestion. If you are suffering from an upset stomach as a result of food poisoning, drink it three times daily until you feel relief. The antibacterial properties found in apple cider vinegar fight against the bacteria that causes food poisoning. You can also add one tablespoon of honey, which will make it more palatable and add extra healing benefits.

3. Rice Water

Boil half a cup of rice in six cups of water. Then strain out the rice and drink the water with a little bit of honey. Rice water helps to relieve inflammation and stomach ulcers. It will also help you stay hydrated, which is important if you are suffering from food poisoning.

4. Charred Toast

Bake macadamia bread.

Toasting your favorite bread can help relieve symptoms of sour stomach.

The char absorbs the toxins that are causing you stomach upset, which relieves pain and other symptoms. Eat two slices of charred toast slowly, and choose bread like whole wheat instead of white bread.

5. Heat

Woman with eyes closed holding a hot beverage.

Drinking hot water can relax your muscles.

Heat can also help. Drinking a cup of hot water or using a hot water bottle or electric blanket can distract from the pain of symptoms and relax your muscles to help bring down the nausea.

Conclusion

Sour stomach might be a normal (albeit uncomfortable) part of life, but there are ways to help relieve symptoms and feel better faster. But prevention is the best cure, as they say, so maybe start thinking about your lifestyle – what you eat, how much you exercise, and whether or not you are careful to prevent germs from entering your food and body. A healthy lifestyle can and does make all the difference, and reducing uncomfortable stomach upset is just one of the many benefits it offers.