What to eat and what not to eat with an upset stomach

Are you suffering from an upset stomach? Have you been having chronic upset stomach symptoms for quite a while? Well if you have you are about to read an article or post that will shoot you straight and will not candy coat the facts as some articles or websites might. This will be a long read for you but hopefully it will give you enough information that will help you overcome upset stomach symptoms and move on to a happier life with a normal stomach.

What Is An Upset Stomach And Why Do We Suffer From It?

An upset stomach is usually the way our bodies let us know that we have eaten something we shouldn’t have. However this is not always the case. Sometimes an upset stomach can be due to sickness or stress. But in a lot of cases, it comes from over-eating or eating things that irritates our stomachs.

Having an upset stomach can cause us to also have nausea. Many times people will end up vomiting if the condition is severe enough. By vomiting, it allows us to eject the irritating contents from our stomachs and usually giving some type of relief.

For some people, an upset stomach could be a disorder. Some people have an upset or queasy stomach constantly and would fall into the chronic category. Others may have a more simple reason for having an upset stomach. There are some that will get an upset stomach just from being nervous. The body has a unique way of producing an upset stomach just from a sudden stressful event. Migraine headaches can be another source of a upset stomach.

Medications And Their Influence On Our Stomachs

Medications can cause either constipation or an upset stomach. It all depends on the individual but many suffer great side effects from taking certain medications. Virus or viral infections are also a common source for an irritated stomach. Most people get over the irritated stomach once the virus has run its course. Do I need to even mention food poisoning?

If you are experiencing constant upset stomach symptoms, please consult a physician. This is especially true if you suffer symptoms like dehydration.

What Not to Eat with An Upset Stomach

Sometimes the best way to figure out what is causing our upset stomach is purely by process of elimination. However, if you are reading this, you are looking for answers and have probably experienced chronic or severe symptoms for quite a while. Therefore, I am not going to just tell you what all the others are telling you on their websites. I am going to tell you what completely changed my way of constant upset stomach symptoms to having a normal stomach again.

The standard foods that are the usual irritants to a person’s stomach are dairy products like milk and cheese. Spicy foods can also have a huge effect on how a stomach reacts to food. This is not the case for everyone but some people cannot handle the heat (no pun intended).

Caffeine is a major irritant to the stomach as well, yet people are so addicted to soft drinks that they would never consider eliminating them from their diet. Not only that but they do not even consider that a drink could be causing their upset stomach. If you drink a lot of sodas, you really need to consider eliminating them completely. I will not lie to you, it will not be easy at first but in the long run you will be thankful you did. You will most likely lose some weight as well with the reduction of sugar that is contained in soft drinks. Another bonus to men by eliminating soft drinks/sodas is that it can be healthier for their prostate. It you are a mad dasher to find a restroom because of a weak bladder, try removing sodas completely (especially ones with caffeine) and see if there is a difference. It will probably take 2 weeks to a month but many men have stated they have felt the difference after they cut out soft drinks and caffeine.

Tomatoes can be great for men and their prostate as well due to the high amounts of lycopene. However, the amount of acid in the tomatoes can aggravate an upset stomach. Another reason people get upset stomachs with tomatoes are because of those tiny little seeds. Those seeds are major irritants to some people.

Nuts can be very healthy and have lots of nutritional value but not everyone can easily digest them. They can cause havoc on the digestive tract. Therefore, if you have an irritated tummy, it would be best to avoid all types of nuts.

If you are experiencing an upset stomach, it may be best to also refrain from eating salads until your stomach symptoms subside. In the past (and I say in the past because salads do not bother me anymore with my healthier diet), if I ate a salad with an upset stomach it would just make it worse. The leafy lettuce and other veggies in the salad just did not seem to do well with the amount of stomach acids I experienced with an upset stomach.

Another food to stay away from if you have an upset stomach is okra (especially fried okra- please see my section on fried foods below). Those little seeds in okra seem to be a magic ingredient for causing some people to have an upset stomach and diarrhea. Not only that but people I have spoken to have witnessed okra on the other end in less than an hour. The reason I know they are not crazy is because I have suffered from the same thing. I am talking less than an hour. How does that happen? I didn’t even think that was possible. Not trying to be graphic, just trying to tell you what people have discussed with me and also what I have unfortunately experienced myself. . Hey, you came here for help so I’m giving it to you. I’m not holding anything back.

The Number One Thing That Eliminated My Upset Stomach Symptoms

Now some websites may tell you about greasy and fatty foods but I am going to tell you something they probably will not. Remember when I said earlier that I would tell you what changed my upset stomach symptoms the most? Well here it is. Cutting out fried (greasy) foods and incorporating whole grain foods was the biggest change that made a difference for me. I used to eat fried foods constantly. I’m ashamed to say that fried food was a staple of my diet. I usually had fried food at least two times a day. When you eat that much fried food consistently, it has an effect on the stomach keeping it in a constant irritated state. When I would try and eat a healthy salad and that was like throwing gasoline on a fire. A salad eaten on a upset stomach can be like eating razor blades for some people. This was especially true for me if I ate fried food before or with a salad.

That was before. Now that I eat a more strict diet, I can eat a salad pretty much every day. I typically eat whole grain cereal or oatmeal in the morning, a salad at lunch, and grilled chicken and vegetables in the evening. I’m telling you that a lot of the “so called experts” will just make generalities and will not say for sure what may be causing your upset stomach. I had doctors that would tell me I had a food intolerance issue. I guess they were right but I needed specifics. Now after suffering chest pains a year and a half ago, I had no choice but to cut out all of my bad eating. When that happened, I found out that all of the bad greasy and fatty foods that I had been eating were causing all of my problems of having a chronic upset stomach. After about two weeks, I could really tell a change in the way my stomach felt. I no longer felt nauseated after I ate and I did not have to rush to find a restroom. I feel like I must say this again, removing fried foods and adding a healthier diet with whole grains, fruits and vegetables made not just a slight difference but it made a HUGE difference for me. If you will do this for two weeks you will most likely see a difference. It was about that long before I could really tell the difference because my stomach so so irritated. 

Now that I have spilled my guts to you (no pun intended), lets get back to the generalities of other foods that nutritionists say is helpful for an upset stomach and avoiding an upset stomach.

brat diet amazonBest Things To Eat With An Upset Stomach – Try The BRAT Diet

Ever heard of the Brat Diet?  This diet comprises Bananas, Rice, Applesauce and Toast (BRAT).  The reason this diet works for upset stomachs is because it is made up of bland foods. Bland foods help neutralize the digestive acids that increase with an upset stomach.

Peppermint tea is a good soothing agent for an upset stomach. It helps reduce nausea in quickly. I remember my Grandmother telling me to eat Peppermint candy when I had an upset stomach as a child.

Crackers are a very good food source to calm an upset stomach. Crackers are fairly low in sodium (ones without salt). This seams to be one of the foods that I can eat when I have an upset stomach the most.

Rice is a great food for an upset stomach. Rice is not hard to digest and is a great stepping-stone for someone that is transitioning back to consuming solid foods.

Ginger is good for your digestive tract and can eliminate nausea and upset stomach symptoms. Ginger is also high in antioxidants.

Are you a big fruit fan?  If you are, bananas is one of the best foods to eat with an upset stomach. There are lots of nutrients that are found in bananas. For one thing, bananas contain a lot of potassium, which has been shown to keep runners and lots of other athletes from cramping.


Well I hope this has helped you in some way. All I have tried to do is give you facts as they have affected my life or from discussions with others that also suffered from chronic upset stomachs. I am not a doctor but I have played on T.V. before. No really, if you are having severe or chronic upset stomachs, please consult a doctor and even a specialist to get medical advice.

If this has helped you in any way, please take the time and let me know. I welcome all comments and feedback. PLEASE, PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO POST WHAT CAN HELP OTHERS!


  1. Isabel says:

    Wow, a real eye opener. As with the okra the same happens to me with corn sometimes lol grose I know. I really need to cut down on caffeine and eating so much starch, I know the lactose is definitely a contributing factor. Wouldn’t water also be good for an upset stomach or constipation?

    • admin says:

      Hey Isabel,

      You are correct and I should have included corn as well. It may be gross but unfortunately it’s a fact of life for many people. Caffeine is worse than many people think plus there is tons of sugar in most of those drinks. Cutting out caffeine has also helped me in weight control because I am not drinking sodas with all that sugar now.

      Water is good but many would argue because it may come straight out of them. However, it’s better to stay properly hydrated. Many people go through the battle of constipation and upset stomach/ diarrhea because they do not drink enough water.

      Thanks for taking time to comment Isabel.

  2. Forlan says:

    Wel thz is prety much what i eat n do..
    i wake up,eat bread wit butter n(and) peanut buter,wit french palony,smetimes poridge or rice,..thn i head of 2 th gym(monday-frday),thn i cme bck n eat bread,at tyms rice,or patato soap n poridge and sleep..at nite poridge n meat….lately whn i eat, i feel lyk(like) vomiting(bt i dnt,its lyk th food is at my throat n abt 2 vomit it it out)…what do u think is causin my runing (upset) stomach…hope u cn gt th wrting,used 2 it,usin my phone.

    • admin says:

      Hey Forlan,

      When I think of porridge, I think of oats that have been cooked sometimes with other ingredients added so I would not think that is something bad to eat.

      I am not sure about Polony. I actually had to look that up and I am not really familiar with it except it is made with certain meats. I try and steer away from meats that are ground like what is in Polony. The reason is it’s hard to know the quality of what is going in the overall product. Polony sounds a lot like a fancy bologna to me.

      Having bread with butter and peanut butter also seems a little strange to me. I’m not sure where you are from but that is not common here in the States.

      You also seem to be eating a lot of starches. I did not see you mention any vegetables. The closet thing was potato soup. Your stomach may be working hard to help you digest your food.

      Is there a burning in your throat area? Just curious because you may be having some acid reflux. When I ate a really poor diet, I constantly had acid reflux that would have a constant burn in my throat or esophagus. I almost let it go too long. I finally had to go to the doctor because eventually the food I ate would not go completely down. It was really tough to eat then. My doctor put me on Nexium and that has helped a lot. If I eat fast food or pizza, I sometimes start getting those old symptoms.

      I’m not sure what your access is to medical facilities or doctors but I would start there first in case there is something wrong internally. I am not a doctor and you may need to seek medical advice. Hopefully it is nothing serious. I hope what I told you about my past experiences has helped. Thanks for taking time to comment on the article.

      • Forlan says:

        U r welcme……Thanks 4 your reply…i ws smiling n laughing to some of the things yo said,u shuld try peanut buter n buter realy tastes wel…wel im frm africa,namibia(u knw wer tht is?)..i dnt eat 2 much of veges bt fruits yeah…our poridge is maize meal no oaks..oh n i dnt realy hav a burning feelin in my throat..i prety much think my upset stomach is due 2 peanut buter,evrytym i eat it,jst th 1st bite makes me feel lyk im full already its lyk my apetite doesnt wnt it bt i stil persist 2 finish it.(wil jst stp eatin it n c wat hapens)…realy apreciate yo reply.

        • admin says:

          Hey Forian,

          I’m glad you enjoyed my response. I may have to try the butter nad peanut butter to really see if it something that tastes good. I know where Africa but do not know where Namibia is located geographically. I have never been to Africa.

          I’m glad you are eating fruits. I would like to see you incorporate more vegetables into your diet. I hope you figure out your stomach problems. The best of luck.

          • Forlan says:

            U shuld google map namibia…wondrful plce,coastal plce (antlantic ocean)…

            alryt thank u very much n yep recovering very wel,


          • admin says:

            It sounds like an interesting place. I love the water so I bet the coast is nice there.

            Glad to hear you are doing better Forlan. I appreciate the nice words. Please come back and visit the blog anytime.

  3. Sharon S. says:

    Thank you so much for this article. It has been very helpful. I have cut out fried foods and I am eating a whole grains everyday for breakfast. I have done this now for 15 days I can feel a big difference. I have also lost 7 lbs in the meantime.

    Thanks so much!!!!!!

    • admin says:

      Hey Sharon S.,

      Thank you for the kind words. I am glad you are getting positive results and I’m sure the 7 pounds is a nice bonus. I really appreciate you taking the time to comment.

  4. Emma says:

    Hey, I really appreciate this email. Just recently ive started to suffer a lot from stomach problems. I was wondering if you could give a handful of example meals for lunch and dinner. I cant live off of bannanas, oatmeal, and toast forever! haha. What about meat? Pickles? Pastas? Thank you for any advice on meal ideas, i could really use it, im starting to get really flustrated with eating options.

    • admin says:

      Hey Emma,

      I will get together some meals or things that I eat on a daily basis. It may take a couple of days but I will get you some info soon.

      Thanks for your reply.

  5. admin says:

    Hey Emma,

    Here are the foods I usually eat on a daily basis or most common.


    · Honey Nut Cheerios
    · Oatmeal
    · Apple Cinnamon Cheerios
    · Cinnamon Toast Crunch every once in a while
    · Fruit mix from store (usually contains pineapple, watermelon, grapes, and cantaloupe)
    · Banana
    · Toast
    · Egg Beaters Omelet (mixed with onions, tomatoes, and cheese). You can also add ham, spinach or bell pepper.


    · Nature’s Best Isopure Zero Carb Protein shake – you can find it here: http://www.isopureprotein.net/natures-best-zero-carb-isopure-protein/
    · Banana
    · Apple
    · Pineapple
    · Grape Juice (weird I know but does not upset my stomach)
    · Raw vegetables from Wal Mart (has the Ranch dipping sauce)
    · Almonds (keep in mind this may upset your stomach but they are very healthy and give you the good kind of fat – they usually do not upset my stomach)


    · Salad (even though salad may upset some people’s stomach it does not mine any longer since I eat healthier) – Ieast salads at healthy restaurants like Paanera Bread
    · Lots of sandwiches at Subway (my favorite healthy ones are Turkey and Oven Roasted Chicken Breast – I have no mayo or mustard – but add lettuce, tomato, onions, spinach and salt and pepper – all of my sandwiches at Subway are on 9 Grain Honey Oat) I have also lost 8 pounds eating at Subway
    · Harvest Cheddar Sun Chips (about 220 or 230 calories) – they are whole grain chips
    · Other Chips I eat are usually baked abut I do not like to eat them
    · Fruit cup with a sandwich


    · Lots of chicken – it’s a good thing I like chicken
    · Fish (broiled or grilled – NOT FRIED)
    · Lean cut of steak (I prefer ribeyes but a filet would be the leanest) – I do not eat beef as often as I used to – my stomach seems to have to work harder to digest beef
    · Steamed Broccoli
    · Squash, Zucchini and Onions in sautéed extra virgin olive oil
    · Carrots – raw or cooked\
    · New Potatoes cut small or tin with lots of pepper place on a slightly greased (with extra virgin olive oil) oven pan
    · I use olive oil if oil is used – it is much healthier
    · Some type of wrap – chicken, shrimp, or steak – watch out for sauces used in the wrap

    These are the most common foods that I eat. There are probably more that I will be able to think of in the future. I hope this helps.

  6. Jason says:

    Hey Admin, I recently just got over a stomach virus and im starting to feel, hungry again but I don’t know what I should start off eating. My stomach has been week still and im unsure what I would be able to eat. Please help – thanks

    • admin says:

      Hey Jason,

      Sorry for the late reply. I have not checked my email on this site in quite some time. For me, in those situations, I always try something that is bland. That will also include crackers for me. Most of the time it is crackers and water. If I am really feeling hungry, it is crackers, water, and chicken noodle soup. There is a reason that a lot of people eat chicken noodle soup when they are not feeling well.

      One advantage about soup is that it has lots of water in it. This way you stay hydrated. Staying hydrated is very important, I cannot stress that enough. I;m not sure what type of foods you usually eat but when you are feeling slightly better, I’m sure you can start to incorporate those back into your diet.

      I hope you are feeling better. Best of luck.

  7. sara says:

    this was very informative. I have been suffering the worst type of stomach pain. A few weeks ago, I ate a very spicy lentil curry which seem to trigger it.
    I am going to give this a try and see how it benefits me. I actually have not been able to eat properly since then and as a result feel i’m going for the wrong types of food rather than the healthier choices there are out there.
    Thank you for this information you.
    God bless you.

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