From Health Facts
|Causes||Food Reactions, Infections, Alcohol, Stress, Prescription Medications|
|See Also||Digestive Conditions, hypochlorhydria, Pernicious anemia, Gastroesophageal reflux disease|
|Books||Books on Digestive and Liver Conditions|
|Articles||Articles on Digestive Conditions|
Gastritis occurs when the lining of the stomach becomes inflamed. Acute gastritis is a transient condition, describing inflammation of the stomach lining, as a reaction in response to irritants. Chronic gastritis involves atrophy of the mucosa, therefore impairing normal function.
In order to stimulate the innate ability of the body to heal the causes of disease must be identified and addressed. The primary cause of gastritis is due to infections or the use of prescription medications yet there are other causes that also need to be considered.
- Increased long-term consumption of alcohol may lead to gastritis.
- Extreme stress is associated with increased risk of gastritis.
- Prescription Medications
- Use of certain medications such as the following may lead to gastritis: Aspirin, Ibuprofen, Naproxen or other anti-inflammatories.
- Medical Treatments
- Trauma or a severe, sudden illness such as major surgery, kidney failure, or being placed on a breathing machine may cause gastritis.
- Eating or drinking caustic or corrosive substances (such as poisons) can result in gastritis.
- Cocaine abuse is associated with increased risk of gastritis.
Gastritis is typically diagnosed based on a thorough history and a person's symptoms. Gastritis will often resolve on its own, but if necessary the following diagnostic tests may be indicated:
- Stool Analysis may be indicated to asses for blood in the stool.
- Imaging Studies such as an Esophagogastroduodenoscopy
Related Symptoms and Conditions
Symptoms commonly associated with or caused by gastritis include:
- Pernicious anemia
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Gastritis may increase your risk of gastric cancer.
Gastritis may by asymptomatic, however some commonly experienced symptoms include:
Symptoms that warrant immediate medical attention:
- Abdominal pain in the upper abdomen that doesn't go away
- Bleeding in the stomach which may show up as:
- Black stools
- Vomiting of blood that may look like coffee grinds
The goal of naturopathic treatment is to support and work in tandem with the healing power of the body and to address the causal factors of disease with individual treatment strategies. Gastritis is an acute condition, yet if not treated appropriately it may develop into a chronic disease Gastritis.
It is always advisable to work with a naturopathic doctor before engaging in any treatment plan.
- Castor oil abdominal rub
Lifestyle recommendations include:
- In acute gastritis it may be beneficial to do a water fast for 24 to 48 hours at the initial onset of the symptoms to provide the digestive system with the opportunity to heal.
- Avoid all food allergies and food sensitivities until the symptoms have resolved.
- Eliminate dairy products.
- Avoid all sugar, fried food, processed or fatty food.
- Eat smaller meals and ensure that you chew your food well.
- Ensure you drink adequate water.
The prescribing of naturopathic therapies requires the guidance of a naturopathic doctor as it depends on a number of factors including the causal factors, a person's age, prescription medications, other conditions and symptoms and overall health. It is always advisable to work with a naturopathic doctor prior to taking any natural therapies.
Naturopathic Therapies for Gastritis include:
- Clinical Nutritional Supplementation includes
- Herbs such as Aloe (Aloe vera), Astragalus (Astragalus membranaceus), Marshmallow Root (Althea officinalis), Barberry (Berberis vulgaris), Chamomile (Matricaria recutita), Echinacea (Echinacea angustifolia), Garlic (Allium sativum), Ginger (Zingiber officinale), Goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis), Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra), Meadowsweet (Filipendula ulmaria), Oregano (Origanum vulgare), Peppermint (Mentha piperita), Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis), Slippery Elm (Ulmus rubra), Thyme (Thymus vulgaris), Turmeric (Curcuma longa)
Reviewed by Iva Lloyd, BScH, RPE, ND 
- ↑ Croft DN (1967 Oct) Gastritis Br Med J; Vol4(5572):164-6 PMID: 4861383.