Gastritis is a common condition that can cause symptoms such as burning and stomach pain, loss of appetite and vomiting. Most people with gastritis improve with treatment, but you may experience symptoms of gastritis again after cure. Fortunately, it is a preventable condition. Some ways to prevent gastritis include:
- Avoid excessive alcohol: Excessive consumption of alcohol can cause gastritis, so drink only in moderation. Alcohol is known to irritate the stomach lining and is a common culprit in causing gastritis.
- Quit smoking: Smoking causes ingestion of products that irritate the stomach lining and make you more susceptible to gastritis and ulcers. Inhaling second-hand smoke can also irritate the stomach lining and cause gastritis.
- Have healthy eating habits: Include healthy foods such as plenty of vegetables, fruits and whole grain food products in your diet. Avoid eating large and heavy meals. Experts say that indigestion can be prevented by eating several small meals each day rather than 2 or 3 large ones as it helps to prevent acid from upsetting your stomach. In addition to this, avoid foods that upset your stomach, especially spicy or deep fried foods. Eating on a regular time schedule is also important. Avoid being hungry for a long time.
- Avoid NSAIDs and other pain medications: Aspirin or ibuprofen irritate the stomach lining and cause gastritis. If needed, take acetaminophen for pain relief as it won't irritate the stomach lining as much.
- Maintain healthy body weight: Lose excess weight and try to remain at a healthy weight. Heartburn and other digestive problems are more common in obese and overweight people. Besides improving gastritis, maintaining healthy body weight has many other advantages as well.
- Preventing H. pylori infection: The exact mechanism by which H. pylori spreads is not known, but some evidence suggests that it may be transmitted from person to person or through food and water. Therefore, washing hands often with soap and water and by eating foods that have been cooked well may help to prevent infection with H. pylori.