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Ulcer and Stress

Ulcer and Stress – maybe not love at first site but definitely a strong friendship

How many of you are not familiar with stomach aches in periods of stress? Despite how common the disease is, it’s only partially understood and the common treatments not a guarantee for relief from symptoms. However, and without been exclusive, ulcer is more common in people with high stress in their lives. Bellow is a list of some proposed theories linking the two and a few simple steps you can take to alleviate the symptoms:

1 Acid rebound
Try to avoid eating soon after or while feeling stressed. The stomach shuts down and is unable to excrete enough hydrochloric acid for protein breakdown. Give your stomach some time to adjust and drink a glass of water with apple cider or lemon prior to eating especially if the meal includes animal protein.

2 Decreased blood flow
Circulation of blood in the stomach muscles is also restricted when stressed, making the formation of micro ulcers more likely to occur. Again, give yourself some time to adjust before eating.

3 Immune suppression
The drop of acidity in the stomach allows bacteria Helicobacter pylori to multiply. In that case an alkaline diet can be adopted to give the body enough time to fight the pathogen.

4 Insufficient amount of Prostaglandins
Prostaglandins (inhibited by aspirin) are a class of hormones contributing to the repair of wounds like ulcer. A diet and a lifestyle that promotes a health endocrine system will support their function.

5 Stomach contractions
Calming exercise and happy thoughts activate the parasympathetic system and allow the stomach muscles regain their regular function.


For a more elaborate analysis refer to: Why Zebras don’t get ulcer by Robert M. Sapolsky


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