Nausea can turn an ordinary, normal day into a nuisance. How can you do anything when you feel the urge to vomit? And if you’re squirming in your chair due to uneasiness caused by nausea or running to the bathroom every chance you get, take a deep breath. While most believe that the only solution to nausea is to pop a pill, there are natural ways to tackle the problem as well, depending on what has triggered the queasiness.
Causes Of Nausea
Queasiness has countless causes, but common reasons include
- Food allergies
- Stomach flu
- Food poisoning
- Gastroesophageal reflux (GERD)
- Migraine headaches
- Motion sickness
- Premenstrual syndrome
- Menstrual cramps
More serious problems, like appendicitis or poisoning, can also cause nausea. Not sure what’s the reason? Visit a doctor ASAP, especially if you’re experiencing pain, fever, headaches, blurred vision, or blood in your phlegm.1 That aside, here are a few natural remedies for your queasiness.
1. Stay HydratedFor nausea caused by heartburn and acid reflux, try barley water. It is believed to reduce the effect of stomach acids, aid in digestion, lower fatigue, and decrease dehydration in the body.2[/pullquotes]
You need water to survive. Even mild dehydration can cause dizziness and nausea, so drink up! This is even more important on hotter days.3
If you do vomit, hydration is key. Sipping on water will replenish your fluid levels.
2. Eat Plain Foods
Morning sickness during pregnancy, hunger, motion sickness, cancer treatments, and surgeries can often trigger nausea upon the smell of certain foods. This could be due to the fact that spicy, pungent odors can trigger a sense of discomfort and make you nauseous.
Small, frequent meals comprising of bland foods will be lighter on the stomach and will not trigger the urge to throw up. Follow the BRAT diet, or bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast. These foods will fill up your stomach without worsening nausea. Ensuring adequate hydration along with small meals of bland food can also greatly reduce the symptoms of nausea. Eat small, frequent meals to avoid ending up with acid reflux.4 5
3. Sniff A Lemon
The refreshing scent of lemon is a natural medicine and frequently used in aromatherapy for nausea. According to a study, pregnant women who sniffed lemons witnessed reduced nausea and vomiting tendencies within 24 hours.6
Alternatively, you could suck on a lemon wedge. The citric acid is believed to ease queasiness. You could also go for a soothing drink, by combining water and lemon juice. It’ll calm nausea while boosting hydration.7
4. Eat Ginger
Ginger is a popular anti-nausea cure.8 In fact, ginger is suggested for those facing nausea as an aftereffect of chemotherapy or some medical procedure.9 10 It is also effective for women post C-sections.11 You could eat half a teaspoon of fresh ginger or try ginger capsules. Alternatively, you could opt for ginger candy, but the strong flavor isn’t for everyone.
5. Sip On Herbal Teas
Herbal teas can be a lifesaver when you’re troubled by nausea. We already know that ginger and peppermint work wonders for the debilitating condition, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that you could also sip on tea made from these herbs for relief. For ginger tea, add a 5 tablespoons of grated ginger to 2 cups of water and set it to boil. Strain and add some freshly squeezed lemon juice. For peppermint tea, boil 3 cups of water and add a few peppermint leaves to it once it’s off the heat. Let this steep for 5 minutes before straining. You could add honey to these herbal teas for taste.14 15
Besides these, chamomile tea can also reduce the symptoms of nausea and calm the stomach. As a digestive relaxant, it treats gastrointestinal problems like nausea, motion sickness, vomiting, bloating, gas, and stomach cramps.16 To make a cup for yourself, all you need is a tea bag and hot water. And, if you’d like to make chamomile tea from scratch, boil 1 tablespoon dried chamomile flowers in 1 cup water. Strain after 5 minutes and enjoy.
6. Breathe In Peppermint Oil
Take a whiff of peppermint oil each time you’re feeling nauseous. In a 2013 study, researchers found that inhaling peppermint reduces nausea in chemotherapy patients.17 Additionally, it’s helped people undergoing surgery.18 To try this remedy, add a few drops to a diffuser and sniff or do so directly from the bottle. If you’d like to apply it on your skin, always dilute it with a carrier oil. Options for carrier oils include coconut, olive, grapeseed, and avocado oil. Alternatively, you could try supplementing with capsules. In the stomach, peppermint relaxes muscles and aids digestion, making it a top choice for nausea.19
7. Try Acupressure
Acupressure is an ancient Chinese practice that uses pressure to heal certain ailments and is similar to acupuncture. To treat nausea, acupressure is applied on the arm. The technique has been so effective that it’s also used on patients who’ve undergone chemotherapy.20 In addition to nausea, it is also believed that acupressure can treat problems associated with it like bloating, gas and diarrhea and improve overall intestinal function.
To give this a go, bring your middle and index fingers together. Press them firmly between the tendons along the inside of your wrist. You should feel a grove in this spot.21 Move your fingers in a circular motion for 2–3 minutes and repeat on the other arm.
8. Lie Down And Rest
Yes, it’s that easy. Lying down is best for motion sickness and seasickness since movements can at times trigger nausea and worsen it. That said, any type of nausea will benefit from this. When you rest, try keeping your head and upper body elevated or with no pillow whatsoever. If lying flat on the floor works for you, try folding your knees to your chest as well and breathe naturally.
Is it so bad that you might faint? Put your head in between your knees to promote blood and oxygen flow to your head.22 Take deep, slow breaths. You could also try to take a quick power nap of sorts. This might make your body forget about any signs of nausea.
Overall, there’s no need to feel helpless or pop a pill every time you feel nauseous. Try any one or all of these tips, one at a time, figure out what works best for you, and let us know as well!
|↑1||Nausea and vomiting – adults. MedlinePlus, U.S. National Library of Medicine.|
|↑2||Faghfoori, Zeinab, Rahebeh Shakerhosseini, Lida Navai, Mohammad Hossein Somi, Zeinab Nikniaz, and Alireza Abadi. “Effects of an oral supplementation of germinated barley foodstuff on serum CRP level and clinical signs in patients with ulcerative colitis.” Health promotion perspectives4, no. 1 (2014): 116.|
|↑3||Dehydration and Heat Stroke. John Hopkins Medicine.|
|↑4||Ebrahimi, Neda, Caroline Maltepe, and Adrienne Einarson. “Optimal management of nausea and vomiting of pregnancy.” International journal of women’s health 2 (2010): 241.|
|↑5||BRAT Diet. Oncology Nursing Society.|
|↑6||Safajou, Farzaneh, Mahnaz Shahnazi, and Hossein Nazemiyeh. “The effect of lemon inhalation aromatherapy on nausea and vomiting of pregnancy: a double-blinded, randomized, controlled clinical trial.” Iranian Red Crescent Medical Journal 16, no. 3 (2014).|
|↑7||Safajou, Farzaneh, Mahnaz Shahnazi, and Hossein Nazemiyeh. “The effect of lemon inhalation aromatherapy on nausea and vomiting of pregnancy: a double-blinded, randomized, controlled clinical trial.” Iranian Red Crescent Medical Journal 16, no. 3 (2014).|
|↑8||Palatty, Princy Louis, Raghavendra Haniadka, Bhavishya Valder, Rajesh Arora, and Manjeshwar Shrinath Baliga. “Ginger in the prevention of nausea and vomiting: a review.” Critical reviews in food science and nutrition 53, no. 7 (2013): 659-669.|
|↑9||Sanaati, Fateme, Safa Najafi, Zahra Kashaninia, and Masoud Sadeghi. “Effect of Ginger and Chamomile on Nausea and Vomiting Caused by Chemotherapy in Iranian Women with Breast Cancer.” Asian Pac J Cancer Prev 17, no. 8 (2016): 4125-9.|
|↑10||Nanthakomon, Tongta, and Densak Pongrojpaw. “The efficacy of ginger in prevention of postoperative nausea and vomiting after major gynecologic surgery.” J Med Assoc Thai 89, no. Suppl 4 (2006): S130-6.|
|↑11||Zeraati, Hossein, Javad Shahinfar, Shiva Imani Hesari, Mahnaz Masrorniya, and Fatemeh Nasimi. “The Effect of Ginger Extract on the Incidence and Severity of Nausea and Vomiting After Cesarean Section Under Spinal Anesthesia.” Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine 6, no. 5 (2016).|
|↑12||Lua, Pei Lin, Noor Salihah, and Nik Mazlan. “Effects of inhaled ginger aromatherapy on chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting and health-related quality of life in women with breast cancer.” Complementary therapies in medicine 23, no. 3 (2015): 396-404.|
|↑13||Lee, Yu Ri, and Hye Sook Shin. “Effectiveness of Ginger Essential Oil on Postoperative Nausea and Vomiting in Abdominal Surgery Patients.” The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine 23, no. 3 (2017): 196-200.|
|↑14||Ernst, E., and M. H. Pittler. “Efficacy of ginger for nausea and vomiting: a systematic review of randomized clinical trials.” British journal of anaesthesia84, no. 3 (2000): 367-371.|
|↑15||Tate, Sylvina. “Peppermint oil: a treatment for postoperative nausea.” Journal of advanced nursing 26, no. 3 (1997): 543-549.|
|↑16||Srivastava, Janmejai K., Eswar Shankar, and Sanjay Gupta. “Chamomile: a herbal medicine of the past with a bright future.” Molecular medicine reports 3, no. 6 (2010): 895-901.|
|↑17||Tayarani-Najaran, Z., E. Talasaz-Firoozi, R. Nasiri, N. Jalali, and M. K. Hassanzadeh. “Antiemetic activity of volatile oil from Mentha spicata and Mentha× piperita in chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting.” ecancermedicalscience 7 (2013).|
|↑18||Stea, Susanna, Alina Beraudi, and Dalila De Pasquale. “Essential oils for complementary treatment of surgical patients: state of the art.” Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2014 (2014).|
|↑19||Peppermint. University of Maryland Medical Center.|
|↑20||Acupressure for Nausea and Vomiting. Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.|
|↑21||Nausea and acupressure. MedlinePlus.|
|↑22||Fainting. National Health Service.|