Stomach flu is caused by a virus, rather than a bacterial infection which means it cannot be treated with antibiotics and there are no definitive antiviral drugs for gastroenteritis viruses. As a result treatment often simply involves ‘resting up’ and drinking lots of fluids to keep hydrated and flush the virus out. There are, however, several natural remedies for stomach flu that can make the whole experience a lot less unpleasant.
Take ginger, for example. This 100% natural remedy for stomach flu works to soothe and settle the stomach, easing nausea and stomach cramps if you have them. You can have ginger in ginger ale or beer (carbonated drinks sometimes settle the stomach and allow you to burp), in the crystallized form, raw in a smoothie or in ginger tea (which is often the best remedy). Ginger is also a natural antioxidant that will clear your system and allow your body to concentrate on ridding itself of the virus.
Other antioxidants include all kinds of berry. It’s a great idea to make a juice or smoothie with blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries and/or goji berries in it. Raw beetroot is also a good antioxidant and natural remedy for stomach flu that when mixed with ginger and carrot, tastes great. Goji berries in particular also give your body’s immune system a much needed boost.
The one problem you might encounter with natural stomach flu remedies is that you simply can’t keep them down. If you are caring for or have come into contact with someone who has stomach flu then it’s a good idea to start taking a natural remedy for stomach flu right away, before you become ill yourself. This could shave hours or even days off the symptoms as your immune system is boosted and able to help your body recover more quickly. While this isn’t a natural remedy, taking a dose of painkillers once every four to 6 hours can help too, even if you aren’t in pain. What this does is it stops your body trying to fight things like stomach cramps or a running temperature when it should be fighting the cause of them: the virus. It essentially allows it to concentrate on what is most important.
Other natural remedies include eating pumpkin seeds, which provide you with energy but also soothe the stomach very effectively. If you still have a sensitive stomach but are hungry then try pumpkin seeds as a snack, dry crackers to fill you up, burnt toast to soak up any toxins/remainders of the virus you have in your stomach and/or plain boiled rice which is easy to digest and also absorbent like toast.
During stomach flu you should be avoiding spicy foods and all dairy (even butter on your toast!). Instead you should be drinking water and herbal teas such as nettle, peppermint or ginger tea which will all soothe an upset stomach, naturally. Keep some raw ginger or tea bags in the back of the cupboard as a stand-by natural remedy for stomach flu in case of emergences or surprise viruses.