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Get answers to your nutrition & healthy eating questions.
Call us toll-free† at 1-877-510-510-2 to speak directly with a Registered Dietitian.
Stress, spicy foods and smoking were once thought to cause ulcers. Now we know that most ulcers are actually caused by bacteria, and helpful treatments are available. Read on to learn more about ulcers.
An ulcer is a painful sore in the wall of the stomach or small intestine. The most common symptom of an ulcer is a burning pain in the stomach.
About one in 10 people will get an ulcer at some point in their lives.
A healthy stomach has a balance of mucus and acid. But if you have too much harmful acid in your stomach and not enough mucus, you may develop an ulcer.
Doctors used to think that ulcers were caused by spicy food, alcohol, cigarettes and stress. Research now shows that:
Ulcers are sores that need to heal. Your doctor will treat your ulcer based on what’s causing it. If it is caused by H.pylori bacteria, you may need to take antibiotics and acid-reducing medicines. If the ulcer is caused by a certain drug, you may need to stop taking that drug.
Either way, you can reduce pain and heal faster by reducing the amount of stomach acid you have. Some ways to reduce stomach acid are to:
Eating well may help your ulcer heal more quickly and may help the stomach make less acid. Here are some tips for healthy eating:
Ulcers may be painful, but can be treated quickly. The first step is to find out the cause of the ulcer. Next, follow your doctor’s advice to treat the pain, and remember that smoking and drinking alcohol may make your ulcer worse. Choose foods that are rich in fibre - from delicious whole grains, vegetables, beans and nuts - and your ulcer may not come back to bother you again.
If you have a peptic ulcer and would like to ask a Registered Dietitian a question, call 1-877-510-510-2 or send an email here.
Eating Guidelines for Peptic Ulcers, EatRight Ontario
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