Is Oatmeal Good for Upset Stomach? 11 Interesting Things To Know

An upset stomach can arise for many reasons such as stomach flu, indigestion or food intolerance. Often a bowl of warm and creamy oatmeal is the perfect remedy to make you feel better. But is oatmeal good for upset stomach? Before answering this question, we should understand an upset stomach and what remedy is needed for that.

There are many moments in daily life when we have faced stomach issues because of certain, very normal, living activities or eating habits. Here, we are going to discuss some of them.

1. What Causes Stomach Upset?

Is oatmeal good for an upset stomach
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Almost everyone has suffered from stomach pain caused by some kind of problem in the digestive system1. Listed below are a few of the causes of an upset stomach:

  1. Intestinal blockage or indigestion due to overeating or stress.

  2. An irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can cause pain in the abdomen, bloating, intestinal gas, diarrhoea or constipation, or both.

  3. Eating greasy or spicy food.

  4. Consumption of too much caffeine or alcohol.

  5. Inflammatory bowel disease.

  6. Intolerance to certain foods.

  7. Food poisoning, accompanied by nausea and vomiting.

2. Foods to Avoid With An Upset Stomach

2.1. Dairy Products 

Milk should be avoided during stomach upset. Milk can trigger lactose-intolerant people. This can cause stomach upsets and abdominal pain.

2.2. Fat and Greasy Food

Fat and greasy foods like pizza, french fries, and pastries can worsen the already uncomfortable symptoms.

2.3. Caffeine

Certain beverages like tea and coffee can act like a bowel stimulant and further irritate a sensitive stomach.

3. Is Oatmeal Good For Upset Stomach? How Can It Help?

Oatmeal contains soluble fibre, which is good for attracting water and turning it into a gel that helps to slow down the digestion process. This adds bulks to bowel movements. Oatmeal is low-fat and packed with phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, iron, zinc, and vitamins B, E, and K.

Is oatmeal good for an upset stomach
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4. Types of Oatmeal

4.1. Old-fashioned Rolled Oats

These oats are flat and flakey. They are steamed and flattened. They absorb water and cook for about five minutes. Usually, they are used to make granola bars, cookies, and muffins.

4.2. Quick-cook Oats

These go through further processing. This helps to decrease cooking time. These rolled oats are partially cooked by steaming and then rolled thinner compared to old-fashioned oats2. They have a mild flavour and soft, mushy texture.

4.3. Instant Oatmeal

Packaged instant oatmeal is pre-cooked. So, the store-bought oats can be prepared in the microwave in a few minutes. Instant oatmeal has various flavourings. This can further upset your stomach.

5. Recipes of Oatmeal to Try

Oatmeal can become a bland diet if consumed every day. Thus, to make every spoonful of your oatmeal delicious, various recipes are listed below:

5.1. Blueberry Oatmeal Muffins

Is oatmeal good for an upset stomach
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Blueberry oatmeal muffins are simple, healthy, delicious, and satisfying. Made with blueberries, oats, and zero refined sugar, you can eat more than one muffin. No more guilty eating habits. Each bite is warm, smooth, sweet, and buttery.

The recipe is linked below:

5.2. Simple Overnight Oats

Are you someone who doesn’t like to cook? No worries! Just soak your raw oats overnight in milk. Or you can soak them in water if you are lactose-intolerant. Keep the container in your fridge. Take it out and add your favourite fruits like banana, strawberry, or blueberry. You can add a tablespoon of honey or vanilla extract for sweetness. Enjoy!

5.3. Salads

You can add your favourite oats to a bowl of vegetables and fruits. Your salad bowl will become more nutrient-rich and delicious. The chewy texture of the fibrous oats will add to the scrumptiousness of your salad.

5.4. Scottish Oatmeal

The outermost inedible layer of oats, that is the whole oat groats is ground and added to soups and stews. Known as Scottish oatmeal3, it is cooked for 15 to 20 minutes. You can make chicken oats soup lentil oats soup or anything else.

5.5. Upma

Upma but made with oats! This South Indian dish is a simple way of eating oats. With spices, curry leaves, and nuts, this dish is wholesome and flavorful.

The recipe is linked below:

5.6. Oats Egg Omelet

All you need for this easy 10-minute recipe is eggs, oats, and chopped vegetables. This can be added to your breakfast and makes for a healthy and yummy meal.

The recipe is linked below:

5.7. Oats Fruits Smoothie

Avoid instant packaged oats for better taste and higher nutritional value. Use old-fashioned oats or organic rolled oats and soak them in water containing lemon or orange juice. Soak it overnight. Drain the water on the next day and add the oats in a blender with a ripe banana or any fruit of your choice. Pour a cup of freshly squeezed oranges.

Is Oatmeal Good For Upset Stomach?
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Blend the mixture till it is smooth and transfer it into a serving glass. Garnish it with dried fruits and any herb of your choice, if you wish to. Your summer drink is ready, yummy, and healthy.

5.8. Oats Cookies

If you are an enthusiastic baker, this is a perfect recipe for you. No more guilt for being a cookie thief because these cookies are highly nutritious and healthy. You can bake your oatmeal cookies, which will be crunchy, soft, chewy, and flavorful.

The link is given below:

6. Is There Gluten in Oatmeal?

A popular topic among the people of the gluten-free community, oats are debated for their properties for people allergic to gluten. Gluten is found in chewy and fibrous foods like wheat, barley, and rye. So, you might ask if oats are gluten-free, especially if you are intolerant to gluten.

Fortunately, pure oats are gluten-free and can be safely consumed by people with gluten intolerance. However, unfortunately, oats get contaminated, often as they are processed in the same facilities where wheat, rye, and barley are processed. Also, oats contain a protein called avenin, which can be a problem for a small percentage of people with celiac disease who react to avenin.

That is why it is important to verify that the oats you are buying are certified to be 100% gluten-free.

7. Is Instant Oatmeal Good for an Upset Stomach?

Packaged oatmeal is popular because of its affordability and convenient preparation requirements. However, artificially flavoured oatmeal is not a stomach-soothing dish. Instead, the sugar and other added synthetic flavours can aggravate upset stomachs like other processed foods can. 

Thus, it is better to buy pure oats, preferably unflavored ones.

8. A Healthy Instant Oatmeal – Quaker Oats

A healthy oatmeal with no added sugars, food colours, artificial flavours, preservatives, or artificial sweeteners, Quaker Oats is 100% whole grains.

It is a high-fiber and nutritious food. It is quick and easy to make in case you are in a hurry. Top it off with dried fruits, nuts, and slices of bananas for a delicious and fulfilling meal.

9. Alternatives for Oatmeal for an Upset Stomach

There are foods other than oatmeal that can soothe an upset stomach, like;

9.1. Bananas

The starch present in bananas, especially green bananas improves gut health. The starch is broken down by the healthy gut bacteria to result in the production of short-chain fatty acids. Thus, bananas help with stomach problems.

9.2. Ginger

During an upset stomach, you might have nausea and a tendency to vomit. This can be due to your immune system getting triggered to fight the signs of inflammatory bowel disease4.

Ginger is an anti-inflammatory remedy that not only helps to reduce inflammation but also strengthens your body to fight future intestinal issues. A herbal tea with ginger can be of great relief.

9.3. Nuts and Seeds

Is Oatmeal Good For Upset Stomach?
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The soluble fibre in nuts and seeds is equally as effective as that in oatmeal.

9.4. Yogurt

Yogurt is one of the most effective probiotic-rich foods. Not only does it help in case of acid reflux but also improves gut health.

10. Other Benefits of Oatmeal

  1. Whole oats are rich in antioxidants and polyphenols, which help in the production of nitric oxide. This leads to the dilation of blood vessels, which results in better blood flow.

  2. Plain oatmeal helps to reduce blood sugar.

  3. Eating oatmeal leads to a feeling of fullness. Thus, this prevents overeating, which may lead to various tummy ailments.

  4. Oats help to reduce both total and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, which can be a leading cause of heart disease. Beta-glucan fiber, which is present in oats is effective at reducing LDL.

  5. Since oatmeal is filling and nutritious, it helps you lose calories. Those who are trying to lose weight can go for an oatmeal diet.

Finely ground oats, found in various skin-care products contain colloidal oatmeal, which is a skin-protective substance. This FDA-approved substance helps to soothe symptoms of eczema.

11. When to See a Doctor?

How to Know if Stomach Pain is Serious

If your tummy troubles don’t get better within a few days, it is better to seek professional help. Look out for the symptoms stated below and call your doctor if you see them:

  1. Severe abdominal pain that feels unbearable.

  2. When the pain is persistent.

  3. Fever greater than 100 degrees Fahrenheit, which lasts for more than 3 days.

  4. If blood is noticed in vomit or stool.

  5. Painful urination or no urination.

  6. Rectal bleeding.

  7. Constant diarrhoea with no signs of improvement after 24 hours.

  8. Constant vomiting.

12. Final Words

Your body is like an engine that needs good nutrients to function properly. Oatmeal is simple and you can get creative with its preparation process. They have various benefits. Even if your cooking skills remain poor, your oatmeal will always taste rich and yummy.

Your gut will thank you if it can speak. It is your turn to thank the body which works for you meticulously every millisecond. Gift your body with some oatmeal.

If you haven’t tried a bowl of creamy and fulfilling goodness, what are you waiting for? Go for it!

Read more on oatmeal.

13. FAQs

Q1. Will Oatmeal Help My Upset Stomach?

Adding grains can also calm stomach upsets and prevent bowel problems.

Q2. What Relaxes an Upset Stomach??

If the stomach pain persists, try sticking to the basics with the BRAT diet, which includes bananas, rice, apples, and toast. These foods are low in fibre and high in fibre, and none contain salt or spices that can upset the stomach. This is a great way to fight clutter and diarrhoea.

Q3. Are Quaker Oats Good for the Stomach?

Oatmeal is good for your gut. Every time you eat a bowl of oatmeal, you’re busy feeding your body fibre, and fibre can help your gut and bowels. This is great – because you definitely want to make sure the intestines are tight.

Is Oatmeal Good For Upset Stomach?

  1. Picos, M. Muñoz, et al. “Evaluation of the implementation of the strategy of problem-based learning (PBL) in digestive system physiology teaching.” EDULEARN19 Proceedings. IATED, 2019. ↩︎
  2. Yiu, S. H. “Effects of processing and cooking on the structural and microchemical composition of oats.” Food Structure 5.2 (1986): 5. ↩︎
  3. Thomson, J. B. “The Dietary of Scottish Agricultural Labourers.” Edinburgh Medical Journal 10.10 (1865): 923. ↩︎
  4. Katz, J., et al. “Oral signs and symptoms in relation to disease activity and site of involvement in patients with inflammatory bowel disease.” Oral diseases 9.1 (2003): 34-40. ↩︎

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