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Your GUT & Nutrition - Upper Gastro intestinal Tract Diseases

Tuesday, July 20, 2010
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FOCUS: Your GUT & Nutrition
When your stomach is cramping, you're feeling bloated, perhaps even belching or having bouts of diarrhea and the only haven is your bathroom - that's the time to sit back on the royal commode and think about how you got yourself into this gastro-intestinal predicament in the first place..

Every year millions of people visit their physicians with common gastric or intestinal complaints and spend a substantial amount on over the counter drugs to treat them.

It's time to address some gut disorders that can easily be prevented with minor adjustments to our diet and lifestyle.

Beginning with... Eating healthier, leading a moderately active lifestyle, lowering stress, quitting smoking, reducing alcohol intake, drinking adequate water, etc



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User Comments

19 March, 2011 | rebekah | Reply

rebekah i have gastro and im only 12. what food and drinks can i have?

21 March, 2011 | Mrinal | Reply

Mrinal Dear Rebekah,
Has your family suggested any remedies already? If this has been going on for a few days or if this is a recurring problem then please do request your family to take you to your pediatrician, so he can do some basic tests and find out the cause.
In the meanwhile, please do follow Ms Vaswani's dietary recommendations.
Feel better.

20 March, 2011 | Poonam | Reply

Poonam Hello,
You have not specified your symptoms and for how long you have had the problem, but, I assume you are suffering from diarrhoea/vomitting and stomach pain/cramps.
In such a situation, it is important to replace the fluids lost from your body so that you do not get dehydrated. You can start with a glass of water to which a teaspoon of sugar and a pinch of salt is added. You can add lemon juice for flavour. Continue drinking this till your symptoms last.
You must eat only light foods like,
Avoid milk and milk products(except yogurt), spices, oily foods, raw vegetables and fruits( other than the ones mentioned)and whole grain cereals.
I hope this helps, and get well soon!

11 October, 2010 | Venkatesh | Reply

Venkatesh I am prone to having frequent stools and irritation in my stomach if I consume milk directly but am fine having curds, fruit yogurt, milkshake, milk based sweets. Am I lactose intolerent or is it that only milk does not suit me.

12 October, 2010 | Vijayalakshmi Iyengar | Reply

Vijayalakshmi Iyengar Dear Venkatesh,
Since you say that only when you drink milk your problem surfaces, it is very likely that you have developed lactose intolerance. Milk allergy normally appears in the first year of life.

Deficiency of the enzyme lactase, required to convert the sugar `Lactose’ in milk to simple sugars causes this intolerance. However you can have plenty of curd/yogurt or buttermilk as the sugars have been converted to lactic acid by helpful bacteria.

Again as I mentioned in one of my earlier responses you need to not only completely avoid milk in your diet you also need to be cautious when you eat out, or buy ready made foods to ensure that milk has not been used in their preparation. Secondly ensure that you make up with other foods especially curd/yogurt to get your required amounts of nutrients, you lose out by avoiding milk.
I suggest you register with us for customising your diet and getting a healthier balanced one.
Thank you

30 July, 2010 | Vijay Kumar Jaiswal | Reply

Vijay Kumar Jaiswal The articles i read are really useful,i highly appreciate and thank to your effort.

30 July, 2010 | Mrinal | Reply

Mrinal Thanks Vijay,
When we get positive feedback such as yours, that's what makes the hours that our dietetic team puts into writing and editing these articles worthwhile.
Pass on the good word, & we look forward to seeing you back soon.

30 July, 2010 | Sapna | Reply

Sapna Spices and condiments like jeera, mustard, fenugreek seeds are often recommended as household remedies to treat gastric upsets. What is the logic and do they really work?

30 July, 2010 | Vijayalakshmi Iyengar | Reply

Vijayalakshmi Iyengar Hello Sapna, Yes there are benefits and is the domain of Ayurvedic science. They have documented evidence of the benefits but the information passed down to the public, like Chinese whispers is all garbled. Today there is a study of the same as Neutraceutical Science and role of each is explained. You can look it up from some authentic websites.

26 July, 2010 | Reena | Reply

Reena My two year old daughter is allergic to milk. She gets diarrhoea each time she drinks milk. I give her soy milk instead. Is she missing out on some important nutrients from milk? How do I supplement them?

27 July, 2010 | Sangeetha Narayana Swamy | Reply

Sangeetha Narayana Swamy Dear Reena,

One study shows that Soy milk fortified with calcium carbonate is equivalent to consuming cow's milk. Also soy milk has the best vegetable protein, easily digestible fats, no saturated fat or cholesterol.

Thank you for your query.

Sangeetha Narayana Swamy,
Senior Dietitian,

27 July, 2010 | Nilanjana | Reply

Nilanjana I never had reactions to Milk, but now in my 30's I find that if I have half a glass of milk there is no reaction - but if I have a full glass of skim milk in the morning -I get a loose motion within 15 minutes.
Any reason? Do you think I am lactose intolerant or something.
I eat yogurt and cheese - no issues?

27 July, 2010 | Vijayalakshmi Iyengar | Reply

Vijayalakshmi Iyengar Dear Nilanjana, Lactose Intolerance can show up at any age and increase with age. Many people like you suffer from bouts of nausea, diarrhea or constipation on a daily basis. We suggest you eliminate milk in your diet. However we want to caution you on two fronts
1. As many processed and prepared foods make use of milk derivatives you have to be careful to chose lactose free dairy products when you buy foods in the market
2. Ensure that you consume sufficient yogurt/curd and other foods which will supply your daily requirement of Calcium in particular and Vitamin A and high quality protein if you are a vegetarian. Take care

26 July, 2010 | Tanya Chowdhary | Reply

Tanya Chowdhary Every time I travel and move from one place to another I land up having cramps and the runs. I drink only sealed bottled water ever since my doc says its the change in water. Could it be the water in the chutnies, fruit juice and milkshakes I have ?

27 July, 2010 | Vijayalakshmi Iyengar | Reply

Vijayalakshmi Iyengar Hello Tanya, both your doctor and you are absolutely right. Water in many places is contaminated and if you have low immunity the chances of you contracting gastroenteritis is very likely. Again as you rightly said you may take care to drink water which is from a sealed bottle or a good water purifier but forget that contaminated water could be added to fruit juice, lassi, milk shakes, chutney etc. Since these dishes are not cooked/boiled you can get infected. So when you are eating out ensure (1) that the food is hygienically prepared and stored and (2) any water used in the preparation is hygienic (either from a good water purifier or from a sealed bottled) especially if the dish has not gone through a cooking process.

26 July, 2010 | Krunal | Reply

Krunal I suffer from frequent heartburn. Do I need to avoid eating fruits?

27 July, 2010 | Vijayalakshmi Iyengar | Reply

Vijayalakshmi Iyengar Hello Krunal, You will actually benefit a lot from eating certain fruits for your heart burn problem. For one the fiber in fruits aid digestion and for another, the sugars in them create mucus to protect both your stomach and esophagus. Fruits like a fully ripe papaya & pineapple, bananas, apples, pears, peaches, kiwi etc. However you should avoid all citrus fruits & tomatoes.

27 July, 2010 | Sangeetha Narayana Swamy | Reply

Sangeetha Narayana Swamy You have to avoid citrus fruits, like orange, lemon, grape etc as they are thought to aggravate the acid reflux. But fruits with soluble fibers like apple, papaya, banana, peach, pears etc can be consumed regularly.

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