Recovering From A Stomach Bug - Food Ideas & Tips

This article is authored by Karishma Chawla. She is a practising nutritionist and a weight loss expert..

Stomach flu can wreak havoc on the system as our overall health is closely interlinked with our digestive health. A stomach flu can have a deep impact on our physical, mental, and emotional health.  Also known as gastroenteritis, stomach flu is usually caused by any virus that may attack the gastrointestinal system. It can also be caused by bacteria through contaminated water and food. Stomach flu symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach cramps, and abdominal pain.

What should you eat if you have a stomach bug?

While you have a stomach bug, there can be quite a bit confusion and misinformation about what foods to eat. Here is a list of foods to eat and avoid -

Hydrate well: Drinking adequate amounts of fluids is imperative due to fluid loss which is caused by diarrhea and vomiting. Fluids include plain water, oral rehydration solutions (ORS), water infused with herbs, coconut water, broth, and herbal tea with ginger and peppermint. In fact, the smell of peppermint tea may help reduce nausea as well.

Low fiber foods: Opt for low fiber, bland foods with no spices or excess oil. For example, you can try with simple khichdi made with white rice and moong dal. It is easy on the stomach and can also collectively help with good protein content.

Eat eggs: They are easy on the stomach and rich in protein, making it a great snack for someone with a stomach flu. Eggs are also a good source of B vitamins and selenium; both of these are important nutrients for the immune system.

Lean meat: While having a stomach bug or recovering from it, lean meat is better tolerated than high fat meats. You can opt for chicken. Do note, tolerating this form of protein is very individualistic, it may or may not suit your stomach.

Soups: Try having soups without any mixers such as cornstarch or cream. Broth based soups are also great as they provide plenty of fluids with electrolytes.

What should you avoid?

Just as eating the right foods is important, avoiding food items and ingredients that may have a negative impact on your body as you recover is important as well. Here’s a list to keep in mind.

  • Fried food items are difficult to digest foods and can aggravate the stomach flu symptoms.
  • Spicy foods as they may trigger nausea and vomiting.
  • High sugar foods and fruit juices as they may worsen diarrhea
  • Caffeinated drinks as they can interfere with sleep. Caffeine can also compromise the digestion and increase bloating
  • Raw foods as these can be difficult to digest
  • Dairy as it is usually a digestive health irritant and can thus cause inflammation and trigger symptoms

Food ideas for when you have a stomach bug

Take a look at this menu for food ideas. This will help you understand when to eat what to recover speedily. Throughout the day, ensure good amount of fluids to replenish water loss and help the body heal.

  • Breakfast: rice flour chilla with eggs
  • Mid-morning snack: fruit
  • Lunch: moong dal khichdi with white rice and broth-based soup
  • Evening meal: Fruit/ mashed potatoes
  • Dinner: soup and khichdi or egg rice
A good gut heath protocol follow is the best way to avoid stomach flu. Include enough rest and sleep as your recover. Eat the right foods and hydrate liberally to be back to your healthy self speedily.

 

This article is authored by Karishma Chawla.

Stomach flu can wreak havoc on the system as our overall health is closely interlinked with our digestive health. A stomach flu can have a deep impact on our physical, mental, and emotional health.  Also known as gastroenteritis, stomach flu is usually caused by any virus that may attack the gastrointestinal system. It can also be caused by bacteria through contaminated water and food. Stomach flu symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach cramps, and abdominal pain.

What should you eat if you have a stomach bug?

While you have a stomach bug, there can be quite a bit confusion and misinformation about what foods to eat. Here is a list of foods to eat and avoid -

Hydrate well: Drinking adequate amounts of fluids is imperative due to fluid loss which is caused by diarrhea and vomiting. Fluids include plain water, oral rehydration solutions (ORS), water infused with herbs, coconut water, broth, and herbal tea with ginger and peppermint. In fact, the smell of peppermint tea may help reduce nausea as well.

Low fiber foods: Opt for low fiber, bland foods with no spices or excess oil. For example, you can try with simple khichdi made with white rice and moong dal. It is easy on the stomach and can also collectively help with good protein content.

Eat eggs: They are easy on the stomach and rich in protein, making it a great snack for someone with a stomach flu. Eggs are also a good source of B vitamins and selenium; both of these are important nutrients for the immune system.

Lean meat: While having a stomach bug or recovering from it, lean meat is better tolerated than high fat meats. You can opt for chicken. Do note, tolerating this form of protein is very individualistic, it may or may not suit your stomach.

Soups: Try having soups without any mixers such as cornstarch or cream. Broth based soups are also great as they provide plenty of fluids with electrolytes.

What should you avoid?

Just as eating the right foods is important, avoiding food items and ingredients that may have a negative impact on your body as you recover is important as well. Here’s a list to keep in mind.

  • Fried food items are difficult to digest foods and can aggravate the stomach flu symptoms.
  • Spicy foods as they may trigger nausea and vomiting.
  • High sugar foods and fruit juices as they may worsen diarrhea
  • Caffeinated drinks as they can interfere with sleep. Caffeine can also compromise the digestion and increase bloating
  • Raw foods as these can be difficult to digest
  • Dairy as it is usually a digestive health irritant and can thus cause inflammation and trigger symptoms

Food ideas for when you have a stomach bug

Take a look at this menu for food ideas. This will help you understand when to eat what to recover speedily. Throughout the day, ensure good amount of fluids to replenish water loss and help the body heal.

  • Breakfast: rice flour chilla with eggs
  • Mid-morning snack: fruit
  • Lunch: moong dal khichdi with white rice and broth-based soup
  • Evening meal: Fruit/ mashed potatoes
  • Dinner: soup and khichdi or egg rice

A good gut heath protocol follow is the best way to avoid stomach flu. Include enough rest and sleep as your recover. Eat the right foods and hydrate liberally to be back to your healthy self speedily.

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