written by: Audrey Alleyne
• edited by: Donna Cosmato
• updated: 7/4/2010
This article provides tips on dealing with ulcers and a list of specific foods for an ulcer diet.
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What Is An Ulcer?
An ulcer is formed when your stomach loses its mucous protective coating and the acid contents of your stomach erode that lining. You will experience symptoms like pain in the stomach early n the morning or an hour after you eat. Doctors prescribe certain medications to heal ulcers but nutrition can play a crucial role. A list of specific foods for an ulcer diet will put you on the right track.
There are peptic ulcers and stress ulcers. You need food which will protect you against ulcer disease. A good ulcer diet does this by making your intestinal lining more resistant to damage. A good ulcer diet can also speed healing when damage occurs.
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Important Vitamins and Foods To Eat
Vitamin supplementation and foods supplying Vitamins can help in developing stress ulcers.
Vitamin A: Under the supervision of your doctor, take 50,000 IU of vitamin A twice a day for 3 to 4 weeks only. Vitamin A rich foods include liver pate, liver sausage, hard cheese, eggs, fresh pasteurized creams, and vitamin A fortified butter and margarine.
Vitamin E: Take 400 to 800 IU of vitamin E daily. Vitamin E foods which can help are wheat germ, hazel-nuts, cold pressed sunflowers seeds, and soybean oil.
Vitamin K: Take 100 mg per day. High vitamin K foods are green leafy vegetables such as kale, collards, spinach, and turnip greens.
Vitamin C: Take a minimum of 500 mg four times a day. Eat vegetables and fruits with vitamin C such as, broccoli spinach, carrots, kale, apricots, and kiwi fruit.
Zinc: Take 50 -80 mg twice a day. Zinc is found in seafood and whole grains.
Omega -3 fatty acids from oily fish like salmon, mackerel, sardines and herring are very helpful in healing.
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Foods To Avoid
Caffeine (caffeinated or decaffeinated) can worsen ulcer symptoms. If you are a coffee drinker, slowly wean yourself over a period of two to three weeks. Avoid caffeinated teas, chocolate, and the many soft drinks which contain caffeine.
Avoid sodium found in salt, soy sauce, canned soup, potato chips, salted nuts, and salted meats such as bacon.
Avoid spicy foods particularly curry, black pepper, chili peppers, and mustard.
Avoid smoking if you are a smoker.
Avoid rich fatty food and fried food.
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Some Helpful Tips
Ulcer patients should develop a routine of eating three regular meals, and two to three small snacks daily.
Include foods rich in starch and fiber.
Include milk protein in your diet.
Avoid overeating, and also going long periods without eating.
Avoid eating stale or expired foods.
Chew your food carefully.
Do not eat at or near bedtime.
Finish your meal about 2-3hours before bedtime. To help the meal digest, walk for about 15-20 minutes after your last meal before going to bed. Use antacids like Zantac and Pepcid only if absolutely necessary. Do regular exercise and manage your weight.