You’d be surprised how often I hear, “My child has been complaining about a tummy ache and they have awful gas. Do you have any herbal suggestions to help them?”
My first response and general child go-to is: CHAMOMILE
Chamomile is used throughout the world as a tea to help settle the stomach. It aids in digestion and also gets rid of gas. According to Lesley Tierra, “drinking chamomile tea every day can regulate your bowel movements.” Also, it’s very rare that I meet a child who doesn’t like a warm cup of chamomile tea with a spoonful of honey dissolved in it.
Here’s a list that I wrote to a friend about herbs that help tummy troubles and also some tea suggestions…
Dandelion (might be a little too bitter for young ones)
Ginger (Mixed with another, sweeter herb or, perhaps, ginger chews)
Lemon balm *
Licorice Root (Also mix with another herb or honey)
Orange and lemon peels
*= gentle on the system
Here's simple instructions to some teas...
Simple Herbal Stomach Ache Remedy:
Put 1⁄2 ounce of dried catnip leaves and 1⁄2 ounce of fennel seeds into a quart jar.
Cover with boiling water and let it steep for at least 4 hours.
Strain and offer warm or at room temperature (depending on your child’s preference) in 1⁄2 cup doses as needed. (If you need something quicker, make extra and offer some after 20 minutes of steeping. It will just get more potent with time.)
Chamomile tea is another good stomach ache remedy. Just steep for 20 minutes rather than four hours as this is a stronger tasting herb. Chamomile is very calming as well as soothing, so it would be a great tea to support a child who is dealing with nervousness or fears.
Chamomile and Friends Tea:
1 Tsp. Chamomile tea (or one tea bag)
1 Tsp. Lemon Balm
½ Tsp. Fennel
1 Cup Water
**Optional: Add ¼ tsp. ginger OR 1 tsp. ginger infused honey**
Steep for 5-20 minutes, depending on the strength desired. Stir in honey if necessary (but not recommended before bed).
Peppermint Tea (again steeped for about 20 minutes) is a good stomach ache remedy for older children and adults. This is a great remedy if the stomach ache is due to overeating or other food issues.