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What to Eat and What Food to Avoid If You Have Ulcer

An ulcer is a major health problem experienced by millions of people around the world. But if not noticed at the right time and if the required measures are not taken, then it might lead to many health consequences. 

One of the main reasons why ulcers are caused is your food habit. Therefore, maintaining a proper and regular diet is crucial. Moreover, you also need to be aware of what to eat when you have an ulcer. Otherwise, the condition might worsen.

What is Ulcer? 

An ulcer is a condition that is categorized by an open sore along the lining of the gastrointestinal tract. The main types of ulcers include duodenal ulcers that develop in the upper portion of the small intestine and gastric ulcers that develop mainly inside the stomach. 

One of the main reasons which cause an ulcer is a bacterium. This is also called Helicobacter pylori. This bacterium damages the protective mucosal barrier of some regions in the intestinal tract and this, in turn, makes it easy to secrete acid that is required for the digestion of food. As a result, the gut’s lining starts to inflame. 

Besides, smoking and the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are the other reasons for ulcers. 

Common Causes of Ulcers

Here are some of the most common causes of ulcers:

  1. Helicobacter Pylori infection: This is considered to be the major reason for ulcers. This is caused by the bacteria H. Pylori, which directly causes inflammation in the stomach and increases acid production. Up to 90% of people report this cause of stomach ulcers. 
  2. Tumors and Diseases: Although this can be the less common reason for ulcer, the tumor also has a role to play, as it increases the acid production in the stomach. This acid, over time, erodes into the stomach creating an ulcer. 
  3. NSAIDs: This is caused as the result of frequent or excessive use of non-steroidal and anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen, aspirin, naproxen, and others. This impairs the mucous lining of the stomach. This damage is caused by stomach acid. 

There are also other causes that result in ulcers, and they include:

  • Bleeding: It is caused by a broken blood vessel in the stomach. This can be identified from a dark or bloody stool
  • Perforation: This is the result of a hole created in the stomach wall and is considered to be a serious condition, which lets digestive juice and food leak into the abdominal cavity. This may turn out to be life-threatening too over the days if not treated at the right time. 
  • Blockages: This will prevent the food from moving properly through the digestive tract.
  • Peritonitis: It is the condition where the infection in the lining may become serious. 


What are the common symptoms of Ulcer?

Here are the 6 symptoms to help you identify that you are the victim of the ulcer as mentioned below:-

  • Unable to eat sufficiently 
  • Discomfort between your meals 
  • Feeling full just within a few spoons of food quickly 
  • Stomach pain in the midnight not allowing you to sleep 
  • Burning, pain, or bloating feel in the stomach 
  • Pain experienced for days or even weeks and might come off and on


If not taken care of at the right time, these symptoms might also add up with a few other serious symptoms telling you your condition is getting severe like nausea, pain in the back, vomiting with blood, sudden weight loss, and blood in the stool. Once you identify these symptoms, you can then think of foods to avoid during an ulcer and improve your situation.

Foods and Drinks to Avoid If You Have Ulcers

There are some types of foods to avoid with stomach ulcers. By understanding them, you can try to manage your diet and learn to balance the ulcer impacts. Here are the foods that you must seriously avoid in your diet: 

  1. Alcohol: Strictly no alcohol! Any type of alcoholic drink can irritate your stomach. Moreover, this will also not let you heal, and even when you are taking medications, you would not be able to manage your health. Therefore, strictly avoid drinks that will affect your health. 
  2. Caffeine: Such as coffee, tea, and any type of caffeinated beverage should be avoided. These types of drinks will increase the acid production in your stomach and will aggravate the condition. 
  3. Processed Foods and Meats: Never take any types of processed foods and meats, seasoned foods, sausages, fried meats, and fatty meats. They will increase the stomach acid and will trigger reflux. 
  4. Spicy Foods: Foods like chili pepper, sauces, black pepper, condiments, and any other types of hot foods should be avoided as they can increase your stomach pain and cause acid reflux. 
  5. Salty Foods Should Be Avoided: Make sure that you take only limited salt content in the food, as they may increase the growth of H. Pylori. Therefore, olives, pickles, and any other types of fermented vegetables and high salt content foods should be avoided. 
  6. Cocoa and Chocolate: Try to avoid taking more chocolates and cocoa as they will increase the secretion of acid in the stomach and trigger acid reflux. 

What are the best foods to eat when you have an ulcer?

However, there are also certain foods that you may need to take to improve your health and reduce ulcers. Common fruits that are good for healing stomach ulcers which include: 

9 Best fruits to eat when you have an ulcer

  • Apples
  • Grapes
  • Pomegranates
  • Blueberries
  • Raspberries
  • Blackberries
  • Strawberries
  • Cherries
  • Bell Peppers


Similarly, vegetables like cauliflower, kale, broccoli are also said to improve your health as they contain essential antioxidants and vitamins that can help heal an ulcer. 

Try to take lean protein-rich foods like lean meat, skinned chicken, eggs, beans, peas, and more. Dairy foods like yogurt kefir are also good choices to quickly reduce ulcers and treat your condition. Whole grain cereals like oats, millet, quinoa, and fiber-rich foods are another best choice to treat an ulcer. Finally, try to include herbs and spices like turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, and garlic, which are good for combatting ulcers, and they also have rich content of antioxidants. 

The Bottom Line

If you have an ulcer in your stomach, eliminate spicy foods, citrus foods, raw vegetables or salads, and carbonated beverages from your diet. These ulcer foods to avoid will certainly help you to improve your condition and lead a healthy life. Moreover, the need to take medications will also be eliminated.

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