Experiencing heat and acid stomach?
Author: Maharishi Ayurveda Date Posted:27 February 2017
It can be difficult to pinpoint the everyday choices that cause or contribute to the discomfort of a burning sensation in the stomach. Ayurveda explains that burning in the stomach is a sign of Pitta imbalance and specifically imbalance within the sub area of Pachaka Pitta
Pitta dosha looks after the various activities that we call digestion and metabolism. Patchaka Pitta is one of the five sub-doshas of Pitta and is located in the stomach and small intestines. When the internal heat of Pitta becomes inflamed within Pachaka Pitta it can give rise to burning sensations in the stomach.
- Pachaka Pitta governs digestion of food and separating nutrients from waste products. It also helps to regulate the ‘heat’ or ‘fire’ of digestion, making it fast or slow, efficient or weak.
- Imbalance of Pachaka Pitta is linked to heartburn, ulcers, acid stomach and irregular digestion (either too weak or too fast - hyperactive), unpleasant odours during elimination and inability to properly extract nourishment from the diet.
- It is imbalanced by excessive salty, sour and spicy foods, alcohol, caffeine, fasting or delaying meals.
Your digestion goes through a daily cycle of rising and falling in step with the rhythms of nature. It‘s natural to feel slightly hungry in the morning, hungry at noon and moderately hungry in the early evening. In between these times digestion shuts down your appetite so the food you have eaten can be digested. If this cycle becomes confused then both appetite and digestion start to overlap leading to indigestion and burning discomfort in the tummy.
Helpful tips for a happy tummy
1. Always stop when you are hungry and eat. Your tummy may burn or become uncomfortable if a meal is delayed so ensure you stop to eat at regular intervals through the day.
- Take breakfast within 1 hour of waking,
- Have lunch at noon and make this your larger meal of the day
- Take your evening meal by 6 or 7pm.
- When active you may also need to take a morning and afternoon snack.
2. Choose a location where you can enjoy your meal. At lunch make sure it is away from work-related interruptions. It is your time out from the busy day. Take the opportunity to breathe in fresh air, relax and allow your body to digest comfortably without tension that can cause tummy discomfort.
3. Start the day with a drink of warm water (not hot) with the juice of half a lime or lemon added. This acts as a gentle reset to your digestion each morning and is surprisingly effective at helping to settle a Pitta imbalance over time.
4. Cooling and refreshing foods are best. Decrease “heating” foods such as salt, oil, spices, sour foods caffeine, alcohol, cheese, red meat, vinegar, fried foods and sour fermented products (avoid pickles, yogurt, sour cream and cheese). This is especially important during summer weather. In the heat of summer, salads, milk and even ice cream in moderation can be helpful. Generally avoid ice cold drinks and choose cool drinks instead. Take a look at this more detailed list of Pitta balancing foods.
5. Helpful herbals include Aci Balance, Emotional Balance and Pitta Tea sipped regularly through the day. The combined synergy of these formulas helps to restore mind body balance in order to support tummy comfort. These synergistic formulas are powerful, effective, require fewer doses with maximum potency and are free from negative side-effects.
Aci Balance naturally supports balance and ease in the digestive system. It helps the brain direct the production of acid in a balanced manner and therefore helps to avoid the rebound effect before it can even take hold. The production of this herbal is the result of a synthesis of Ayurvedic herbal heritage with modern production technology that takes the moisture absorbing properties of these herbs into consideration. Take1-2 tablets after main meals or as required.
Emotional Balance supports tranquility of mind and contentment. Helps the mind and body adapt to stress, enhances coordination between the mind and heart helping to reduce an anxious tummy and promotes quality sleep. The ingredient ashwaganda supports healthy circulation of adrenalin and reduced plasma cortisol, with amalaki being a powerful antioxidant helping to nourish the brain and heart.
Take 1-2 tablets with warm milk or warm water twice a day 15-30mins before meals. (Not recommended during early or suspected pregnancy)
Cooling herbal Pitta Tea is a delicious combination of fragrant rose petals and refreshing spices of licorice, cardamon and cinnamon. Taken warm or cool, it is the perfect answer when you're feeling intense or frustrated. It helps cool down your mind, body and emotions. Fill a 1.5 to 2L flask with boiling water and add 1-2 tea bags. Pour some tea into a cup and let it cool to a comfortable temperature and sip every 30-60 minutes throughout the day.
5. When feeling a build up of heat in your body one simple way to help your body release this heat is to have a cup of warm milk with 2-3 teaspoons of ghee (clarified butter) melted into it. Take this drink as your evening meal around 5.30 to 6.00pm in place of your dinner. The excess heat will be eliminated through your gastro-intestinal tract via your bowel motions. Then continue with the herbal help mentioned above.
Wishing you the bliss of a happy and joyful summer season.