Stomach ulcers, otherwise called gastric ulcers, peptic ulcer, or duodenal ulcers, are sores that develop in the stomach lining or duodenum. It sometimes extends to the first part of the small intestine.
This condition may cause you to feel excruciating pain, especially when it is severe. Sadly, ulcers do not heal quickly. Although some existing drugs are used to remedy these stomach ulcers, they usually leave harmful side effects.
Researchers, however, have found turmeric to be a natural and safe alternative to alleviate gastric ulcers. In fact, turmeric polysaccharides are now appreciated widely for its therapeutic benefits in soothing gastric inflammation and ulceration.
Turmeric, which belongs to the ginger family of plants, is known to have antiseptic properties, and it has been a part of alternative medicine for about 3000 years now.
Could turmeric be the safe alternative you need to deal with your stomach ulcers? Well, we shall find out, but first, let’s discuss a little more about this condition.
What Causes Stomach Ulcers in the First Place?
The major causes of stomach ulcers include:
- Cellular oxidative stress
- Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infections
- Use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines (NSAIDS) such as aspirin and ibuprofen for a long period.
- Spicy or junk foods (may worsen the condition by boosting acid production in the stomach)
These factors highlighted above may cause gastric ulceration and inflammation. Cellular oxidative stress and the H. pylori infection particularly boost acid secretion in the stomach and reduce mucin production.
The high acid secretion erodes the mucus lining of the stomach, and this usually results in stomach inflammation and ulcer.
However, scientists have found that some natural ingredients, including turmeric, can help protect the mucus lining of the stomach and stop growth of ulcer-causing bacteria, such as H. pylori.
Turmeric for Stomach Ulcer: Does it Work?
Several studies have shown that turmeric have powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties which help in resolving gastric ulcers.
Although there are OTC drugs used to control acid secretion and stop bacterial infection, you tend to have some harmful side effects over time.
Using turmeric, however, has been shown to be a safe way to boost the levels of free-radical-scavenging enzymes like glutathione, catalase, and superoxide dismutase. This reduces the negative effects of oxidative stress in the stomach and protects the mucus lining.
Curcumin is the major therapeutic component in turmeric, and it is responsible for the spice’s yellow color.
The curcumin content in turmeric has been proven a good cure for gastric issues, such as inflammation and ulceration.
NSAIDS like ibuprofen, indomethacin, and aspirin disrupt collagen fibers and break up the network of blood vessels in the stomach. These drugs block the COX-1 enzyme and hinder the production of prostaglandins in the stomach. This leads to bleeding and increased risk of ulcers.
Now, here’s how curcumin comes into play – This compound promotes the formation of new blood vessels around the site of ulceration. This is important for the healing of gastric ulcers.
Curcumin regulates the levels of the two enzymes – MMP-2 and MMP-9, which play a vital role in the formation of new blood cells.
Curcumin increases the MMP-2 levels and reduces that MMP-9 levels simultaneously. This way, it creates a balance between these two important enzymes, and this supports the action of this anti-inflammatory compound.
The curcumin content in turmeric also restores the collagen fiber that gives strength to the stomach linings.
If that’s not enough, turmeric helps reduce inflammation and prevent risk of cancer in patients with gastritis. There’s a link between H. pylori infection and cancer.
The bacteria can easily infect open sores of stomach sores, which can result in DNA mutation and damage to cells.
Some symptoms of gastritis include indigestion, burning pain, and nausea. And if you fail to treat this condition, it can progress to sores in your stomach lining and this may result in ulcers.
And in some cases, chronic inflammation of the stomach often leads to cancer.
Taking curcumin regularly, however, has been found to help ease symptoms of gastritis. And several studies report how turmeric helps prevent cancer and slow down the growth of cancer cells if it happens anyways.
Turmeric for Acid Reflux
Acid reflux or backup of stomach acids into the esophagus usually occur in GERD –gastroesophageal reflux disease. As the acid goes into the esophagus, it may erode the linings, causing inflammation and sores.
In some cases, the acids cause patches of the esophagus linings to wear away completely, and this may progress into ulcers.
Studies have shown that acid reflux in GERD may be caused by oxidative stress and inflammation.
And taking antioxidant and anti-inflammatory ingredients is a good way to treat acid reflux associated with GERD.
Hence, turmeric is a good alternative remedy for acid reflux and ulcers as it contains powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Taking turmeric helps protect your stomach from damages caused by NSAIDs and other harmful drugs. It also helps kill cancer cells in the gut and heal ulcers.
Is Turmeric Effective for Mouth Ulcers?
Mouth ulcers can cause difficulty eating, drinking, and even brushing your teeth. These ulcers are very painful and the pain and sensitivity may last for days or weeks.
Scientific studies have shown that curcumin supports the healing of wounds in mouth ulcers.
The good thing about turmeric for mouth ulcers is that it is effective and safe.
Are there any Side Effects of Using Turmeric for Stomach ulcers?
Well, turmeric is safe for most people.
But some people may get acid reflux due to allergy to curcumin or turmeric itself.
It is important that you check the quality of turmeric you’re consuming and buy from a reputable brand with third-party testing results.
Consuming turmeric that is mixed with toxic chemicals may produce some side effects.
Also, be sure to check your turmeric dose and follow the instructions of the manufacturers. We don’t need to tell you that consuming too much of anything is bad.
How to Use Turmeric for Stomach Ulcers
Although turmeric has been used for many generations now to resolve many health issues, it is important to note that using turmeric in the traditional way to tackle ulcers may not produce a fast relief.
That’s simply because the natural turmeric is quite insoluble in water. And due to low bioavailability, the curcumin content may not be fully absorbed by the body, hindering the full benefits for ulcer.
To get rapid results, Turmeric Soothe contains the purest and highest quality of turmeric grinded into fine powder and mixed with Piperine, which helps your body absorb curcumin well.
Turmeric is a good alternative remedy to stomach ulcers, gastric ulcers or duodenal ulcers. The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of this powerful spice makes it effective for reducing inflammation, restoring collagen fiber, and disrupting the growth of cancer cells.
However, in addition to turmeric supplementation, it is important to follow a healthy lifestyle to get rid of ulcers. You need to avoid spicy, fried foods and eat more easily digestible foods like vegetables, butter, and yogurt.
Also, avoid overeating if you have stomach ulcers. It is best to eat in portions. For example, you can eat small amounts of food every 3-4 hours.
But in all, remember not to shut out your doctor if you observe symptoms of stomach ulcer.