What are some good folk remedies for upset stomach?

By upset stomach I don’t mean “Have to go poop.”

I mean that you are nauseous and/or feel sick in your stomach and/or lower intestine, but not in your esophagus or bowel.

My mom really just used either milk (which sometimes helped, and was sometimes the worst) or sprite/light ginger ale.

They worked with varying degrees of effectiveness, but the best I have ever used personally is the mix of sprite and saltines.

My wife is a proponent of the milk with a dash of turmeric, and my westernized daughter has totally sucked this up, and always wants a cup of warm milk with turmeric before bed- and she has in the past refused both hot chocolate and normal warm milk.

I don’t know where this came from, but I don’t mind it. The only issue possible is that the milk might overload her with calories, but we need to find an outlet for excess calories anyway…

Just looking for any other remedies that might work…

Ginger ale has always been my go-to for an upset stomach. The bubbles and the ginger both help in their own way.


Burnt toast was always what we were given for heartburn or nausea, either one.


Note: Ginger ale that doesn’t actually have any ginger in it might help, but it’ll be the carbonation. If you’re going to go with ginger ale, make sure it really has ginger not just HFCS and ginger-like food additive for flavoring.

Yes- we use the real ginger beer or ginger ale, or even just a slice of ginger in sprite…

Flat Coca Cola.

My mom always gave us crushed ice. This was for a couple of reasons, the primary being that if we were going to barf, she only wanted to clean up water. Still, the coolness did help and it kept me somewhat hydrated. Once we’d managed not to barf up the crushed ice for a couple of hours, we could move to sprite or ginger ale. If we kept that down for an hour or two, we go jello, then a few hours later saltines.

If you’re looking for a remedy that doesn’t involve ingesting anything and you can stand up without feeling nauseated, I often find that I feel better after a warm shower or simply putting a heating pad at my back.


So, uh, I should shake up a coke and pour it in a glass?

Or just pour it out the night before and let it sit?

What exactly are you advocating here?

This is what I follow for myself, without the jello.

I haven’t ever tried a heating pad, however. That helps an upset stomach?

Club soda (the real kind with sodium bicarbonate in it, not just sparkling water) is very helpful, both b/c of the bubbles and the sodium bicarbonate. Adding several dashes of Angostura bitters to it is a good idea as well; it’s a very old “sour stomach” remedy which is also excellent at getting rid of heartburn. You can find bitters in your grocery store in the mixers section. It doesn’t taste particularly good but I find it grows on people; a squeeze of lime cuts the bitterness.

If my stomach is a little out of sorts, I find that sucking on a peppermint (the swirly red & white ones) will sometimes settle it pretty well

The Cola nut was used in Coca Cola in the early days (along with coca leaf extract) and the concoction was originally marketed as a digestive remedy. Its competition was Pepsi Cola, very directly marketed as a digestive (peptic) remedy. I don’t know why it should be flat, except to keep carbonation burps from turning into technicolor yawns. Somebody once told me 7-up used Lye (lime? lyme?) as a digestive aid; perhaps Cecil can illuminate us.

Ginger ale has been a known remedy for quite a while and I suspect Post #3 links to an article expounding the versatile utility of ginger so I won’t bother with my usual verbosity. I will, however, note that every airline will serve ginger ale as it is especially good against motion sickness.

Lemon has been similary known to settle stomach problems, and used Lemon Fanta after an extremely nauseating car ride along twisty mountain roads in Japan.

Speaking of Japan, I learned from my mother’s habit of drinking Japanese green tea after an oily meal, as it is supposed to help the stomach cut through the grease.

And, if you’re having an acid indigestion problem (your stomach is working overtime to produce acid to break down something greasy that you ate) it might help to sip a teaspoon of vinegar – send a bit of acid downward to tell your stomach there’s already enough available so it can stop pumping out more.

Plop, plop!
Fizz, fizz!
Oh, what a relief it is!
– Alka Seltzer commercial jingle.

Which reminds me: A test comparing Tums, Alka Seltzer, Rolaids, and simple Baking Soda showed that the Baking Soda worked fastest and most thoroughly. Cheapest of all, too!

It depends on the nausea and its cause. Sometimes if I’ve got nausea caused by a stomach bug involving diarrhea or if I’ve got exceptionally painful menstrual cramps, a heating pad or hot water bottle on my lower back helps. Plus, the shower or heating pad distracts me because I’ve got something else to focus on - going through the motions of a shower or how good a heating pad can feel on my back.

Reed’s Extra does. Why would anyone drink anything else? We always have a few bottles around for medicinal use, in addition to drinking it for fun.

Sprite and purple (the light kind) Gatorade mix. And Saltines.

The Sprite does the bubbly work, but the Gatorade keeps it form being too bubbly. The Sprite also helps tone down the sweetness of the Gatorade. Drink with a straw.

How it gets flat is up to you.

When I was (much) younger, my mom could actually get coke syrup from the drugstore for digestive issues. I guess that would be the ultimate flat coke.

Yes, back in the day that drugstores generally had soda fountains (which means going back roughly 60 years) we always got a small bottle of coca cola syrup and used that straight. It seemed to work too.

Often saltines work too.