Nausea is a common symptom of many ailments, ranging from simple stomach infections to pregnancy to cancer; almost everyone will experience it at some point in their lives. It is a feeling of unease in the abdomen or an unsettling in the stomach. It is also characterized by an urge to vomit; in fact, it is often a precursor to doing just that. Fortunately for you, we've compiled a list of four helpful herbs to help with nausea that can act as natural, calming stomach-savers.
1. Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
Though researchers are still pinpointing the exact reason behind ginger's gastrointestinal success, there have been studies proving the effectiveness of ginger against nausea (especially as related to pregnancy), motion sickness, and seasickness.1,2 The compounds in ginger work against the harmful substances upsetting the stomach, thus encouraging and supporting natural digestive processes.
2. Bitter orange (Citrus x aurantium)
Folk medicines in different parts of the world, such as the Amazon rainforest and China, have used bitter orange for years against intestinal troubles, such as nausea, indigestion, and constipation. Though it has also been linked to increasing blood pressure when used in small doses, it could help your belly chill out.
3. Peppermint (Menta x piperita)
Peppermint is used for conditions where a calming and soothing effect is desired. In practice, it is excellent against indigestion, irritable bowel syndrome, and other intestinal maladies because it relaxes the stomach muscles and stimulates natural digestion. It is also consumed as a tea, rubbed as an oil, or inhaled as an aroma to alleviate various ailments, such as sore throats, headaches, and congestion, which may coincide with your nausea.3
4. Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis)
Known for its soothing effects, lemon balm is used to treat a multitude of ailments, like anxiety and insomnia, but also a range of dyspeptic disorders, including nausea and vomiting. In fact, it's suggested as a solution for extreme stress and the symptoms that go hand in hand.4 This is good news for those seeking a calm and happy stomach.
When you get your hands on some of these four herbs to relieve nausea, try making tea or a tonic out of them. Even simply inhaling their soothing scents could help you battle unpleasant symptoms. As an added bonus, they might be cheaper - and certainly are more natural - than some of the pharmaceutical alternatives.
- Chemotherapy Research and Practice, Alternative Methods to Treat Nausea and Vomiting from Cancer Chemotherapy, 2015
- Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Aromatherapy for treatment of postoperative nausea and vomiting, 2018
- NCCAM Herbs at a Glance, Bitter Orange
- New York University - Langone Medical Center, Ginger
- University of Maryland Medical Center, Peppermint
- Support Care Cancer. (2012). Ginger (Zingiber officinale) reduces acute chemotherapy-induced nausea: a URCC CCOP study of 576 patients. Retrieved September 10, 2020 from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21818642/
- Iran Red Crescent Medical Journal. (2013). Evaluation of Oral ginger Efficacy against Postoperative Nausea and Vomiting: A Randomized, Double – Blinded Clinical Trial. Retrieved September 10, 2020 from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3955504/
- Ecancermedicalscience. (2013). Antiemetic activity of volatile oil from Mentha spicata and Mentha x piperita in chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. Retrieved April 25, 2022 from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3562057/
- Journal of Medicinal Food. (2019). Basal and Spasmolytic Effects of a Hydroethanolic Leaf Extract of Melissa officinalis L. on Intestinal Motility: An Ex Vivo Study. Retrieved April 25, 2022 from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6653806/