Article in brief: A quick look on what causes gastric upsets and problems.
A tummy ache can vary from simple butterflies in your stomach to a full blown stabbing pain, which can be a symptom of a peptic ulcer (a medical condition where the mucous covering of the digestive tract, usually the stomach, develops a lesion).
Today, I will talk about Gastritis: a common medical condition in family practice where the gastric mucosa (the lining of your stomach) is inflamed and irritated resulting in various symptoms ranging from indigestion, heart burn, or stomach aches. If gastritis is left untreated it can lead to serious complications such as a peptic ulcer or stomach cancer.
There are many causes for Gastritis; for example, the food one eats can aggravate the stomach lining and produce those symptoms. Spicy food, caffeine on an empty stomach, fatty foods, along with alcohol, smoking and high levels of stress are all associated with this medical condition. Medications such as Asprin or Brufen have also been shown to cause gastritis or gastritis like symptoms. Sometimes, a bacterial infection can be causing the heart burn and indigestion; H. Pilori, a bacteria that normally resides in the stomach can sometimes flare up and cause an infection in the lining of the stomach when the body is under a lot of stress or the body’s resistance is low.
From a mental perspective, thought patterns identified with people with recurrent gastritis include angry and worrysome thoughts. Angry thoughts can be directed to self or others and can get aggravated to reach an “eating yourself up” with resentment or guilt or anger, which can lead to ulcers flaring up.
Stressing over what might go wrong can also aggravate acidity in some. Our stomach is where we digest food and absorb nutrients, so from an energetic and intuitive perspective, when one can’t “digest” circumstances or “absorb” love from family and friends, an energetic imbalance is created. In the spiritual world the stomach is part of the “Solar Plexus” Chakra, this chakra is usually responsible of control issues: of self, others, and circumstances. When it’s out of balance it can lead to stomach upsets.
It is thus important to address all the different aspects of one’s life experience when dealing with this medical condition. For starters; once an H. Pilori infection is excluded a closer look at eating and lifestyle habits will benefit the patient. Avoiding food that aggravates the symptoms which includes caffeine, spices, fizzy drinks, alcohol and smoking can create a significant shift in the condition.
In parallel, identifying the area which is causing anger or a sense of being out of control in one’s life will create awareness and changing that perspective can be beneficial for the recovery. Releasing anger either by venting out emotions, spiritual practice or by simply redirecting the energy into a constructive outlet such as the gym or a new project can help temporarily. However, for more sustainable results then a thorough and holistic assessment to the anger might be needed. Once anger is resolved, it will be easier to experience relief and allow the healing process to be complete.
In conclusion, your stomach is where you digest life’s circumstances, which will continue to be thrown at you. Being able to let go and have faith creates a great sense of relief as one lets go of the compulsion to control every little detail and “eat themselves up” with anger and resentment. Being able to change this point of view on any life changing experience will allow you to be in the receiving mode of gratitude, love and nurture and to digest everything with ease.
Mariam looks at health from a holistic perspective and believes that our bodies respond to our thought patterns and emotional behaviors. She also believes that health is attainable and that a happy life is a healthy one. Mariam created the concept of "ebb and flow" to reflect how we can deal with the various tides of life by flowing in harmony with our inner wellbeing to achieve health. The column will cover common health topics with an approach to conditions in a mind body spirit framework.