Related Terms

Gas; Indigestion; Poor Digestion; Stomach Upset

Dyspepsia is pain or discomfort in the upper middle part of the belly. You may also have a burning feeling in your chest, bloating, nausea, and burping.

If a health problem is not the cause of your dyspepsia, medicines and diet changes may help. Some people look to natural therapies to further ease symptoms.

Natural Therapies

May Be Effective

  • Acupuncture is the insertion of fine needles in the body. It may improve symptoms of dyspepsia.A1-A9

Herbs and supplements that may ease symptoms:

  • Chios mastic gum is made from the resin of a mastic tree. It becomes soft when you chew it. It may improve symptoms in people with dyspepsia.B7
  • Herbal preparation of extracts of bitter candy tuft, matricaria flower, peppermint leaves, caraway, licorice root and lemon balmB5
  • Candytuft—a flowering plant.B4, B6
  • Magnesium with activated charcoal and simethicone B9
  • Peppermint and caraway are plants that have been used together as an oil.B1-B3, B13
  • Probiotics are microorganisms that help the body.B12
  • Rikkunshito is an herbal medicine used in Japan.B8, B10, B11

Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.

Herbs and Supplements to Be Used With Caution

Talk to your doctor about any supplements or therapy you would like to use. Some may get in the way of treatment. They can also make illness worse or cause new problems.



A1. da Silva JB, Nakamura MU, et al. Acupuncture for dyspepsia in pregnancy: a prospective, randomised, controlled study. Acupunct Med. 2009 Jun;27(2):50-53.

A2. Park YC, Kang W, et al. Evaluation of manual acupuncture at classical and nondefined points for treatment of functional dyspepsia:a randomized-controlled trial. J Altern Complement Med. 2009 Aug;15(8):879-884.

A3. Ma TT, Yu SY, et al. Randomised clinical trial: an assessment of acupuncture on specific meridian or specific acupoint vs. sham acupuncture for treating functional dyspepsia. Aliment Pharacol Ther. 2012 Mar;35(5):552-561.

A4. Zeng F, Qin W, et al. Influence of acupuncture treatment on cerebral activity in functional dyspepsia patients and its relationship with efficacy. Am J Gastroenterol. 2012 Aug;107(8):1236-1247.

A5. Lima FA, Ferreira LE, et al. Acupuncture effectiveness as a complementary therapy in functional dyspepsia patients. Arq Gastroenterol. 2013 Jul-Sep;50(3):202-207.

A6. Lan L, Zeng F, et al. Acupuncture for functional dyspepsia. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2014 Oct 13;(10):CD008487.

A7. Zhang CX, Guo LK. Dalitong granule combined with electroacupuncture in the treatment of functional dyspepsia: A randomized controlled trial. Chin J Integr Med. 2015 Oct;21(10):743-750.

A8. Kim KN, Chung SY, et al. Efficacy of acupuncture treatment for functional dyspepsia: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Complement Ther Med. 2015 Dec;23(6):759-766.

A9. Ko SJ, Kuo B, et al. Individualized Acupuncture for Symptom Relief in Functional Dyspepsia: A Randomized Controlled Trial. J Altern Complement Med. 2016 Dec;22(12):997-1006.

Herbs and Supplements

B1. May B, Kuntz HD, et al. Efficacy of a fixed peppermint oil/caraway oil combination in non-ulcer dyspepsia. Arzneimittelforschung. 1996 Dec;46(12):1149-1153.

B2. Madisch A, Heydenreich CJ, et al. Treatment of functional dyspepsia with a fixed peppermint oil and caraway oil combination preparation as compared to cisapride. A multicenter, reference-controlled double-blind equivalence study. Arzneimittelforschung. 1999 Nov;49(11):925-932.

B3. May B, Köhler S, et al. Efficacy and tolerability of a fixed combination of peppermint oil and caraway oil in patients suffering from functional dyspepsia. Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2000 Dec;14(12):1671-1677.

B4. Rösch W, Vinson B, et al. A randomised clinical trial comparing the efficacy of a herbal preparation STW 5 with the prokinetic drug cisapride in patients with dysmotility type of functional dyspepsia. Z Gastroenterol. 2002 Jun;40(6):401-408.

B5. Madisch A, Holtmann G, et al. Treatment of functional dyspepsia with a herbal preparation. A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, multicenter trial. Digestion. 2004;69(1):45-52.

B6. von Arnim U, Peitz U, et al. STW 5, a phytopharmacon for patients with functional dyspepsia: results of a multicenter, placebo-controlled double-blind study. Am J Gastroenterol. 2007 Jun;102(6):1268-1275.

B7. Dabos KJ, Sfika E, et al. Is Chios mastic gum effective in the treatment of functional dyspepsia? A prospective randomised double-blind placebo controlled trial. J. Ethnopharmacol. 2010 Feb 3;127(2):205-209.

B8. Kusunoki H, Haruma K, et al. Efficacy of Rikkunshito, a traditional Japanese medicine (Kampo), in treating functional dyspepsia. Intern Med. 2010;49(20):2195-2202.

B9. Coffin B, Bortolloti C, et al. Efficacy of a simethicone, activated charcoal and magnesium oxide combination (Carbosymag®) in functional dyspepsia: results of a general practice-based randomized trial. Clin Res Hepatol Gastroenterol. 2011 Jun;35(6-7):494-499.

B10. Arai M, Matsumura T, et al. Rikkunshito improves the symptoms in patients with functional dyspepsia, accompanied by an increase in the level of plasma ghrelin. Hepatogastroenterology. 2012 Jan-Feb;59(113):62-66.

B11. Suzuki H, Matsuzaki J, et al. Randomized clinical trial: rikkunshito in the treatment of functional dyspepsia--a multicenter, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study. Neurogastroenterol Motil. 2014 Jul;26(7):950-961.

B12. Ohtsu T, Takagi A, et al. The Ameliorating Effect of Lactobacillus gasseri OLL2716 on Functional Dyspepsia in Helicobacter pylori-Uninfected Individuals: A Randomized Controlled Study. Digestion. 2017;96(2):92-102.

B13. Rich G, Shah A, et al. A randomized placebo-controlled trial on the effects of Menthacarin, a proprietary peppermint- and caraway-oil-preparation, on symptoms and quality of life in patients with functional dyspepsia. Neurogastroenterol Motil. 2017 Nov;29(11).

Last reviewed May 2019 by EBSCO NAT Review Board

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