Nausea – What is It and How to Treat It?

Nausea is a condition which causes a feeling of wanting to vomit. It is sometimes accompanied by an urge to vomit. It commonly arises out of a wide range of medical conditions or treatments and can be a sign of illness or injury. Nausea is a subjective experience and can range from mild discomfort to a strong feeling of deep unease. Depending on the severity, it may be accompanied by other symptoms such as sweating, headaches, dizziness, and decreased appetite.

Nausea can be acute or chronic, depending on the cause. Some common causes include pregnancy, motion sickness, gastrointestinal issues, stress, anxiety, food poisoning, infection, and certain medications. Depending on the cause, treatment may include dietary changes, medications, or lifestyle alterations.

Dietary Changes to Treat Nausea

  • Stay hydrated and drink plenty of fluids throughout the day.
  • Eat small meals and snacks throughout the day rather than large meals.
  • Avoid greasy, spicy, and acidic foods.
  • Avoid alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine.
  • Eat slowly and chew food thoroughly.
  • Focus on getting nutrients from fruits, vegetables, proteins, and whole grains.
  • Take breaks from eating between meals.

Medications to Treat Nausea

Your doctor may prescribe one or more medications to help reduce or manage your nausea. Common medications used to treat nausea include:

  • Antagonist Drugs: These medications work to reduce the amount of acid produced in the stomach, which can lead to nausea. Common drugs in this class include metoclopramide (Reglan) and ondansetron (Zofran).
  • Antiemetics: These medications are used to reduce the amount of stomach acid and calm the digestive tract, making it less likely to cause nausea. Common drugs in this class include prochlorperazine (Compazine), promethazine (Phenergan) and scopolamine (Transderm Scop).
  • Anti-anxiety Medications: If anxiety is causing your nausea, your doctor may prescribe medications to help reduce your symptoms. Common drugs in this class include lorazepam (Ativan), alprazolam (Xanax), and diazepam (Valium).

Lifestyle Changes to Treat Nausea

Your doctor may suggest lifestyle modifications to help reduce your nausea. Some of these changes include:

  • Avoiding triggers that cause nausea.
  • Getting regular exercise.
  • Practicing relaxation techniques such as deep breathing or meditation.
  • Practicing good sleep hygiene.
  • Avoiding greasy foods and strong odors.
  • Eating smaller meals more frequently throughout the day.
  • Sipping on ginger or peppermint tea.
  • Taking vitamin B6 supplements.


Nausea is a common feeling of unease that can be caused by a wide range of medical conditions and treatments. It is important to understand the cause of your nausea in order to find the most effective treatment. In addition to dietary changes and medications, lifestyle modifications may also help to reduce the symptoms of nausea. If you are experiencing ongoing nausea, it is best to speak to your doctor for further advice on how to best treat the condition.