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Do you have a lack of appetite recently? Having bad breath? Or do you experience a bloated stomach with a nausea feeling? If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you are most likely having indigestion or what 中医药 term as food stagnation. 

Indigestion can be caused by overeating or eating a combination of food that is hard to digest. For example, having fried food, spicy food, alcohol and also dairy products. If you love eating sushi, you might be experiencing indigestion too if you eat them frequently. Having too much raw and cold food can hinder the digestive process which leads to indigestion as a result. 

Pungent foods such as garlic, ginger, onion, chilli and pepper are often touted good for the body. For example, have you heard your next-door aunty recommending sliced fish ginger porridge when she knows that you are sick? It can help dispel gas in your body and also promote your appetite. However, having too much of these isn’t a good thing either. When you take too many of these pungent foods, it can over-stimulate the gastrointestinal tract, causing indigestion.

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Other than the food we eat, stress can also cause indigestion! Under the TCM approach, the physician would try to move the flow of energy, qi, in the stomach. This would aid in the digestion of the food in the stomach, moving food into the intestines. 

It’s a pretty common ailment in Singapore so if you have indigestion, here are five ways to treat it!

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1. Avoid cold food

Our body is kept at an optimum temperature so that it is ideal for all our bodily functions. When you eat too much raw or cold food, it can throw the optimum temperature off-balance, hindering the digestive process. 

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2. Take everything in moderation

Whether the food is good or not, foods should be eaten in moderation. For example, the pungent foods mentioned above. They are good for the body but it should be taken in moderation. Overeating will cause unwanted side effects as it overstimulates the body, doing more harm than good!   

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3. Have good eating habits

Eat regularly and on time daily so you can avoid gastric pain. There is no standard time for meals but if you eat lunch frequently at 2pm, stick to it and nothing later than that. You should not be skipping your meals as well as you might overcompensate when you eat your next meal, placing more burden on your digestive process.

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4. Keep fit

Keep yourself in the pink of health by exercising regularly and staying active. When you have a healthy body, your body functions will operate at its optimum. When the immunity system is boosted, it helps to fight off infection in your body. 

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5. TCM Herbal Tea

Common Chinese herbs prescribed for indigestion includes Hawthorn Berry, Barley and also Tangerine Peel. These can be easily purchased in TCM stores and it is easy to make a drink with them. Let them steep in hot water for a few minutes before drinking them.