You just ate last night’s dinner and now your stomach is aching. You rush to the bathroom to defecate. You feel sick and you want to throw up. You’re stuck in the bathroom and can’t get up. If this is what is happening to you, then you might be suffering from a case of food poisoning.
But how do you go to the hospital? How can you get yourself checked? It seems like every few minutes, you need to go to the bathroom. And you can barely stand up with your stomach cramps. Well, there is no need to worry. Here are some home remedies for food poisoning.
Food poisoning is any food-borne illness. It results from consumption of spoiled food or any contaminated food and beverage.
There are various causes of food poisoning. Pathogens, such as viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasitic worms, and chemical and natural toxins present in the food or drink are all causes of food poisoning. This usually arises from mishandling food, improper preparation and storage of the food and drinks.
Once the pathogen or the toxin from the food enters your body, you start feeling sick. And you now have food poisoning.
Symptoms of food poisoning
The symptoms of food poisoning may vary depending on the cause of the illness. In some cases, the symptoms may be more severe than the other cases. There are also situations wherein the onset of the symptoms is earlier. Symptoms may also last longer depending on what caused the poisoning.
Most food poisoning cases have symptoms of diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, and abdominal cramps. Sometimes, fever and headache may also develop. And in worse cases, diarrhea may be bloody. Complications, such as dehydration, may arise if the food poisoning is not treated properly.
Home remedies for food poisoning
Treatments for food poisoning depend on the type of food poisoning. Some food poisoning from poisonous fishes and plants, like the pufferfish, needs immediate hospital attention. However, most food poisoning cases improve on their own within 48 hours and don’t require you to go to the hospital. Here are some home remedies for food poisoning to make you feel better sooner.
• Let your stomach settle. Eating and drinking anything can upset your stomach even worse. Let your stomach rest for a few hours before ingesting anything.
• Suck on ice chips and/or take small sips of water. It is vital that you only take small amounts of water frequently. This is to keep you hydrated and to prevent your stomach from being overwhelmed. You can also try drinking clear soda (7UP or Sprite), non-caffeinated sports drinks (Gatorade), and clear broths. Affected adults should be able to consume 8 to 16 glasses of liquids each day.
• Gradually begin eating again. Ease back into eating by consuming bland and easy-to-digest foods. Soda crackers, gelatin, rice, bananas, and toast are some of the food that you can eat. Stop eating if you start feeling nauseous.
• Rest. The illness can make you feel tired and weak. So, don’t force yourself to work or get up. Get plenty of rest to make you feel better.
• Don’t use anti-diarrheal drugs. Medicines intended to stop diarrhea, such as loperamide (Imodium) and diphenoxylate with atropine (Lomotil), may slow down the process of eliminating the toxins and the pathogens inside your body. These can make your conditions worse and can make recovery take longer.
• Watch what you eat. Avoid foods and substances like dairy products, alcohol, nicotine, fatty foods, and highly seasoned foods until you no longer feel sick.
• Activated charcoal. Activated charcoal is an absorbing agent. It is widely used to filter water and remove unwanted germs, dirt, and other substances. It is also available for human consumption. Take 2 pills with a glass of water. In some people, 10 minutes is all it takes to start feeling better again. You can get activated charcoal pills from health food stores.
• Apple cider vinegar. Take a few sips of apple cider vinegar. Some people experience results only after several minutes. Others take a few more until they start feeling better. Apple cider vinegar stops the cramping.
If you still don’t feel better after two days, you should see a doctor. Frequent vomiting for more than 2 days, blood in vomit and stool, inability to keep liquids down for 24 hours, severe diarrhea for more than 3 days, extreme abdominal cramping, and symptoms of dehydration are all signs for you to have yourself checked by your doctor.