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9 Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning

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9 Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning April 24, 2018

Whether it was the mouth-watering street food you had last night or the leftovers that you munched on a few hours back, you find yourself using the bathroom a bit too often. And this is accompanied by other symptoms like nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. That is when you realize that you have had food poisoning and begin looking for remedies to treat it. Don’t worry, we’ve got that covered! In this article, we have listed home remedies to treat food poisoning naturally. Scroll down!

Table Of Contents

What Is Food Poisoning?
Signs and Symptoms Of Food Poisoning
What Causes Food Poisoning?
Home Remedies To Cure Food Poisoning
What To Eat And Drink After Food Poisoning
What To Avoid Eating When You Have Had Food Poisoning
When To Visit A Doctor

What Is Food Poisoning?

When you ingest contaminated, expired, or toxic food, it often leads to food poisoning, also known as foodborne illness. It is usually characterized by nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. The other symptoms are discussed below.

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Signs And Symptoms Of Food Poisoning

Food poisoning hardly goes undetected due to its tell-tale symptoms like:

  • Abdominal pain or cramps
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fever
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Headaches

Most cases of food poisoning are caused due to any of the factors listed below.

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What Causes Food Poisoning?

The most common causes of food poisoning are:

  • Bacteria

Salmonella bacteria are the most common cause of food poisoning. Campylobacter and C. botulinum are the other bacteria that can prove to be quite lethal.

  • Viruses

Norovirus, also known as Norwalk virus, is responsible for over 19 million cases of food poisoning every year. Other less common viruses that can cause food poisoning are sapovirus, rotavirus, and astrovirus. Hepatitis A virus can also be transmitted via food.

  • Parasites

Food poisoning caused by parasites is less common but can prove to be quite fatal. Toxoplasma is the parasite most commonly associated with food poisoning, and it is found in cat litter boxes. Parasites can remain undetected for years, but in people with weak immunity, they can lead to serious side effects. Pregnant women are at an increased risk of food poisoning by parasites.

Food poisoning must be treated before it turns life-threatening. If you have had food poisoning, try the remedies listed below to accelerate your recovery.

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How To Treat Food Poisoning Naturally

  1. Apple Cider Vinegar
  2. Essential Oils
  3. Ginger With Honey
  4. Garlic
  5. Grapefruit Seed Extract
  6. Lemon Juice
  7. Basil
  8. Vitamin C
  9. Bananas

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning

1. Apple Cider Vinegar

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning - Apple Cider Vinegar Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 glass of warm water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add one to two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to a glass of water.
  2. Mix well and consume immediately.
How Often You Should Do This

You must drink this 2 to 3 times daily.

Why This Works

The antibacterial properties of apple cider vinegar are very effective against foodborne pathogenic bacteria like Escherichia coli (1), (2). ACV is also a rich source of minerals and enzymes that can help in stabilizing your body after a bout of food poisoning (3).

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2. Essential Oils

a. Oregano Oil

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning - Oregano Oil Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 1 drop of oregano oil
  • 1 glass of water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a drop of oregano oil to a glass of water and mix well.
  2. Consume this solution.
How Often You Should Do This

You must drink this 1 to 2 times daily until you see an improvement in the symptoms.

Why This Works

Oregano essential oil can work wonders in treating food poisoning. It contains compounds like carvacrol and thymol that impart excellent antimicrobial properties to it and help eliminate the pathogens responsible for food poisoning (4).

b. Thyme Oil

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning - Thyme Oil Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 1 drop of thyme oil
  • 1 glass of water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a drop of thyme oil to a glass of water.
  2. Mix well and consume this.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink this solution 1 to 2 times daily.

Why This Works

Thyme oil contains compounds like thymol, carvacrol, and linalool that have antimicrobial and antiparasitic properties (5). Hence, it can be effective against various foodborne illnesses.

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3. Ginger With Honey

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning - Ginger With Honey Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 1 to 2 inches of ginger
  • 1 cup of water
  • Honey
What You Have To Do
  1. Add the ginger to a cup of water and
  2. bring it to a boil in a saucepan.
  3. Simmer for 5 minutes and strain.
  4. Let the tea cool a little before adding some honey to it.
  5. Consume it immediately.
  6. You can also mix a few drops of ginger juice with honey and consume it.
  7. As a quick fix, you may also chew on small pieces of ginger.
How Often You Should Do This

You must drink this tea at least thrice daily until your symptoms subside.

Why This Works

Ginger is a commonly used remedy for various ailments. It contains a compound called gingerol that has antimicrobial properties and helps fight the foodborne pathogens. Ginger can also improve the absorption of essential nutrients that can aid digestion, and this effect is doubled when it is used in combination with honey (6). Honey exhibits antimicrobial and digestion properties that can speed up your recovery. Both ginger and honey also relieve nausea and vomiting that are the usual symptoms of foodborne illnesses (7), (8).

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4. Garlic

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning - Garlic Pinit

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You Will Need

2-3 peeled garlic cloves

What You Have To Do
  1. Chew on the garlic cloves.
  2. Alternatively, you can also mince some garlic and consume it with honey.
How Often You Should Do This

You must consume garlic at least once daily until you obtain relief.

Why This Works

Garlic has powerful antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties that can help destroy the foodborne pathogens (9), (10). It can also relieve diarrhea and stomach pain.

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5. Grapefruit Seed Extract

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning - Grapefruit Seed Extract Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 8-10 drops of grapefruit seed extract
  • 1 glass of water
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a few drops of grapefruit seed extract to a glass of water and mix well.
  2. Consume this solution daily.
How Often You Should Do This

You must drink this thrice daily for 3 to 5 days.

Why This Works

Grapefruit seed extract is derived from whole grape seeds. It contains polyphenols called oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPCs) that possess antimicrobial and antioxidant properties. These properties fight the pathogens responsible for food poisoning and also help you recover faster (11).

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6. Lemon Juice

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning - Lemon Juice Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 glass of water
  • Honey (optional)
What You Have To Do
  1. Extract the juice from half a lemon and mix it with a glass of water.
  2. Add some honey for flavor and consume.
How Often You Should Do This

You can drink lemon juice 2 to 3 times daily.

Why This Works

Lemon juice is a rich source of antioxidants that improve the overall healing of your body. It exhibits exceptional bactericidal activities that can help combat the bacterial pathogens responsible for causing food poisoning (12), (13). Lemon juice also aids digestion and helps you recover faster.

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7. Basil

a. Basil With Honey

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning - Basil With Honey Pinit

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You Will Need
  • Basil leaves
  • Honey
What You Have To Do
  1. Crush some basil leaves and extract the juice.
  2. Mix a teaspoon of honey with a teaspoon of basil extract and consume immediately.
  3. Alternatively, you can also add a drop of basil oil to a cup of water and consume it.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this 3 to 4 times daily.

Why This Works

Basil is another herb known to kill foodborne pathogens with its excellent antimicrobial properties (14). It can also calm your stomach and reduce the symptoms associated with food poisoning.

b. Basil With Cardamom

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning - Basil With Cardamom Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 3-4 basil (tulsi) leaves
  • 1 cardamom (elaichi)
What You Have To Do
  1. Chew on the basil leaves along with cardamom.
  2. Alternatively, you can mix basil extract with cardamom powder and consume a teaspoon of it.
How Often You Should Do This

You must consume this immediately after you experience food poisoning.

Why This Works

The antimicrobial properties of tulsi help eliminate the microbes that cause food poisoning. The combination of tulsi and cardamom works wonders in alleviating vomiting and nausea (15).

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8. Vitamin C

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning - Vitamin C Pinit

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You Will Need

1000 mg vitamin C supplements

What You Have To Do

Consume 1000 mg of vitamin C supplements.

How Often You Should Do This

You can continue taking this 3 to 4 times daily if your symptoms don’t improve after the initial treatment.

Why This Works

Vitamin C is an antioxidant, and it helps eliminate bacteria and toxins from your body (16). Hence, its intake will help you manage the symptoms of food poisoning better. If you do not want to take additional supplements, you can increase your consumption of vitamin C-rich foods.

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9. Bananas

Home Remedies To Treat Food Poisoning - Bananas Pinit

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You Will Need

Bananas

What You Have To Do
  1. Have a banana daily.
  2. You can also blend some bananas with milk and consume it daily.
How Often You Should Do This

You can do this 2 to 3 times a day.

Why This Works

Bananas are rich in fiber and potassium (17). They replenish the lost potassium in your body, which, in turn, re-energizes you and helps alleviate the symptoms of food poisoning.

Once you have succeeded in combating food poisoning using these remedies, you must be cautious about what you eat and drink. Here is a list of foods and drinks you can consume.

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What To Eat And Drink After Food Poisoning

First and foremost, you must not eat or drink anything for a few hours after experiencing food poisoning symptoms like vomiting and diarrhea.

After a few hours, you can start consuming the following foods/drinks to overcome weakness:

  • Sports drinks that contain electrolytes to keep yourself well hydrated.
  • Broths.
  • Bland foods that are gentle on your stomach like bananas, cereals, egg whites, and oatmeal.
  • BRAT diet that consists of bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast.

Now that you know what to consume after you have suffered from a bout of food poisoning, let us look at the foods/drinks that you need to avoid.

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What To Avoid Eating When You Have Had Food Poisoning

Getting rid of the food that was the probable cause of food poisoning tops the list.

Other than that, you must avoid eating or drinking anything that could be harsh on your stomach like:

  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Spicy foods
  • Dairy products
  • Fatty or fried foods
  • Nicotine
  • Seasoned and processed foods

Mild to moderate cases of food poisoning can be easily at home if you follow the remedies and tips discussed in this article. However, severe cases might need medical attention.

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When To Visit A Doctor

You must visit your doctor immediately if you:

  • Have diarrhea that continues for days
  • Have high fever
  • Experience difficulty in speaking
  • Develop poor eyesight
  • Exhibit severe dehydration symptoms
  • Notice blood in your urine

Food poisoning can happen to anyone at any point in time. So, if you have ended up with this problem, follow any of the above remedies to prevent your condition from worsening. And if it doesn’t seem to help, visit your doctor immediately.

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Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions

What is the best medicine for food poisoning?

Most cases of food poisoning are mild and can be easily treated by using home remedies and keeping yourself hydrated. Use ginger or apple cider vinegar for quick relief.

How long does food poisoning last?

There are more than 250 types of food poisoning, which are caused by different factors. Hence, the duration depends on the cause of poisoning, the amount of contaminated food you ingested, and the severity of the symptoms. Mild cases of food poisoning usually last for a day or two.

Does food poisoning give you a fever?

Yes, mild fever is one of the symptoms of food poisoning. Severe cases of food poisoning are known to cause high fever.

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