We’re all aware of the adage “You are what you eat” but what we choose to put inside our bodies before each meal also has a significant effect on our overall health both physically and mentally.

Whether it is a cup of black coffee or alcohol, here are nine things that you should avoid eating or drinking on an empty stomach.

1. Taking Anti-inflammatories

Although they are a great solution for treating pain and inflammation, taking anti-inflammatory drugs such as Asprin, Paracetamol, and other anti-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can cause serious health problems if they are taken on an empty stomach. The dangers include gastric bleeding, upset stomach, bleeding ulcers and an overall un-effectiveness. If you are taking anti-inflammatories on a regular basis, there is a great chance you can develop these symptoms. In this case, a trip to your physician is necessary if you experience any of these above symptoms for further treatment.

Advice: The lactic acid in milk helps to reduce the adverse effects of NSAIDs. If you cannot get your hands on a glass of milk, you can drink plenty of water to gulp down the drug. Sometimes taking NSAIDs with antacid and calcium supplements seem to help ease an upset stomach. Switching up the time of when you take medicine from morning to afternoon or evening seems to help with any discomforts. Anti-inflammatories should never be taken with alcohol. Keeping all these things in mind while taking NSAIDs should get you feeling better in no time.

2. Taking coffee

Skipping on breakfast again and reaching for a cup of joe might not be such a good idea after all. Even drinking decaf coffee adds to producing more acid in your stomach that can result in some significant medical issues. Having a constant increase of acid in your stomach can cause damage to your stomach and digestive tract. Other problems like acid reflux, heartburn, and heart burns can also occur. If you find yourself under the weather, it might be due to the lack of serotonin, which is a chemical that our bodies need to produce to maintain the balance of moods.

Advice: If you can’t shake the habit of having breakfast before your morning coffee or even after, then the best alternative would be to add cream or milk. The fatty acids in the milk will help to reduce the adverse effects. There are so much better all natural choices out there now so make sure you grab natural coffee the next time you go grocery shopping. Almond milk and coconut creamers are also an

3. Drink alcohol

Without eating, the alcohol absorption rate increases by a factor of 2 and is the same as during its intravenous injection. In contrast, the removal of alcohol breakdown products slows down, which provokes a severe hangover. The rapid effect of alcohol on the body doesn’t go without negative consequences for your liver, heart, and kidneys.

Advice: If the situation doesn’t allow you to refuse a drink, give preference to cooled noncarbonated drinks as they are absorbed more slowly. Better yet, eat at least a small sandwich, ideally one that contains butter.

4. Chew gum

Over chewing the gum may lead to gastritis, inflammation in your stomach. Chewing gums contain natural sweeteners (xylitol, sorbitol) that are less harmful than sugar. However, you should not chew gum for more than 10 minutes.

Advice: Chewing gums containing natural sweeteners (xylitol, sorbitol) are less harmful than those with sugar, cyclamate, or aspartame. Avoid chewing gum for more than 10 minutes, even on a full stomach.

5. Go to bed

Have you ever been so hungry that you can’t fall asleep? Well, the same thing happens in reverse. When you don’t get enough sleep, you tend to crave more savory and fatty foods in the morning.

Advice: So the best thing to do is to have some dairy products before bed because they contain things such as magnesium and calcium that will help you get a nice, deep sleep that way you won’t be ravenous when you wake up and eat everything in sight.

6. Intense training

Many people find that training while fasted (on an empty stomach) is better for fat loss but in reality, having just a little bit of fuel (food) in you can result in a much higher energy output.

Advice: If you like to do resistance training in the morning, then it is best to have some sort of carbs (or simple carbs such as fruits) before you train.

But if you insist on fasted training then we advise you do some form of aerobic exercise (such as jogging) instead since it doesn’t require as much energy as lifting weights.

7. Shop

We all know that hunger makes us buy more food than we actually need. In fact, an empty stomach makes us more acquisitive even in non-food stores. According to research, the internal message of “I want food“ gets pared down to simply ”I want,” and the famished person obeys that message by buying things.

Advice: Besides a shopping list made in advance, paying with cash can also help you save money. Further research shows that people tend to spend less when they pay with cash instead of a credit card.

8. Drink citrus juice

Drinking citrus enriched drinks on an empty stomach can irritate your tummy which can be dangerous for those who are suffering from gastritis and are in danger of developing it at any given time. Consult your family physician if you feel as if you might be at risk of developing gastritis.

Advice: Freshly squeezed citrus juices can bring nothing but benefits to your health if it diluted properly in a healthy ratio of 1:1 or if your stomach is a bit more sensitive try a 2:1 ratio with two parts water and one part of your favorite citrus fruit.

9. Arguments

Researchers have proved that some people feel less composed when they’re hungry. It happens because the self-control requires energy and because you’re running on an empty stomach, you tend to get angrier than needed. So, even if you don’t have the time to eat, drink something warm.

Advice: If you can’t find yourself exiting the argument try sitting down with a warm drink and offer some to your opponent as well for that matter. Sit down and try to talk it out. Chances are you are less likely to argue after sipping on that warm drink. Feels like a hug doesn’t it? Next, try having a light meal or snack before entering into a conflict. Don’t let your hunger throw you off!

What you can do when you’re hungry

You are probably thinking what the most obvious solution for hunger other than eating food is? You would be surprised at what you can do besides eat when you are hungry or can’t get access to food quick enough.

– Solve Problems. The ability to concentrate and perform normal tasks becomes harder on an empty stomach. Our ancestors had a legacy of solving problems to provide food for themselves. It was due to the hormone ghrelin which works overtime in starvation mode, stimulating brain activity to help battle tasks along the way.
– Make Choices. Can’t decide what to wear or where to go? Try making those decisions on an empty stomach. The famished brain is more likely to make to faster decisions from being impulsive. Be careful not to use this tactic when dealing with more pressing matters of family, finances, and health.

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