9 Simple Home Remedies for Dizziness
If you're prone to feeling faint or unsteady, you may be experiencing symptoms of a serious health condition, a reaction to medication, or just the result of pushing yourself too hard. Talk to your doctor to rule out anything serious, then try some of these home remedies for dizziness to restore your equilibrium.
Drink water before eating
Eating can lead to a drop in blood pressure, which can leave you feeling dizzy and light-headed. But you can alleviate this condition, called postprandial hypotension, by drinking a glass of water 15 minutes before eating. That was the finding of a small study published in 2015 in the journal Clinical Nutrition, which included 12 adults with an average age of 67. Talk about a simple home remedy for dizziness. You know you should get plenty of fluids—here’s exactly how much water you should be drinking each day.
Avoid long hot showers and baths
Although it may sound less than pleasant, there are at least eight good reasons to take a cold shower. While most of us would rather stick to the steaming hot type, “heat dilates your blood vessels, which can lead to a drop in blood pressure,” says Tania Elliott, MD, a clinical instructor in medicine at NYU Langone in New York City. And low pressure can make you feel light headed. You don’t have to swear off your warm showers, but limit them to ten minutes, advises Dr. Elliott. Want a longer soak? Stick to water closer to body temperature—warm and soothing, but not hot. (Here are other home remedies that will keep your blood pressure from dropping too low.)
Drink ginger tea
Ginger delivers a lot of surprising benefits—including reducing motion sickness in people prone to it. In a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study published in American Journal of Physiology, half of the people with a history of motion sickness received ginger supplements and half got a placebo pill. They were put in a drum that spins them, simulating motion sickness. The people who got the ginger supplements developed less severe symptoms than the ones who received the fake pill. If you’re prone to motion sickness, try sipping ginger tea.
Eat whole grains
A heavy meal of foods your body digests quickly, such as white rice, potatoes, and foods loaded with refined flour and sugar, can cause your blood sugar to drop and make you feel lightheaded, according to the Harvard Heart Letter. To avoid dizziness caused by blood sugar dips and spikes, eat slow-digesting, high-fiber foods such as beans and whole grains. Lean protein meat like fish and chicken are also good choices.If you’re looking to eat more fiber—here are 30 easy ways.
Try apple cider vinegar
One common cause of dizziness is low blood sugar, but apple cider vinegar might help with that, according to a study in Diabetes Care. Researchers fed two groups of people a carb-rich meal (think: a bagel and orange juice). Half were given an apple cider vinegar drink after the meal and half a placebo drink. The study participants included people with diabetes and non-diabetics who were insulin-sensitive or insulin-resistant. Those who got the vinegar drink had better post-meal blood glucose levels, and also had fewer peaks and valleys. Still, experts caution that people with diabetes should not try this tip without talking to their doctors. But if you’re healthy, it’s safe to have one tablespoon of ACV a day. Want to try apple cider vinegar? Make sure you don’t take it like this.
Get a massage
You can actually activate your body’s acupressure points to relax and self-treat. But getting a massage is more fun and one of our home remedies for dizziness. According to the Mayo Clinic, feelings of anxiety can trigger dizzy spells, so relaxing activities that promote a sense of calm can help short-circuit dizziness. A soothing massage with lavender essential oil may help you if you’re prone to feeling anxious.
Take ginkgo biloba
You may know of this herb as a brain tonic (and here are some other ways to keep your mind sharp. Practitioners of traditional Chinese medicine use ginkgo biloba to treat dizziness, believing that it increases circulation and blood flow to the brain. And a multi-center study published in the International Journal of Otolaryngology that compared the herb to betahistine, a common prescription medication given for vertigo, found that the western and eastern remedies were equally effective as a vertigo cure, but the ginkgo biloba had fewer side effects.
Ever felt dizzy and lightheaded when you stand after sitting for awhile? That sensation is called orthostatic or postural hypotension—it is low blood pressure from suddenly changing positions and is often caused by dehydration. So make sure to stay fully hydrated, especially when you’re sick, you’ve been exercising or when it’s hot outside.
Choose a focal point
When the room starts to spin, stop what you’re doing and choose a stationary object like a wall clock or a piece of furniture to focus on. It’s the same idea as staring at the horizon on a boat trip. In fact, the American Academy of Family Physicians shares these motion sickness strategies for your family: sit by a window seat on the plane, don’t look down at books or devices when traveling, and fixate on something specific on the horizon to keep light-headedness and nausea away.
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- Clinical Nutrition: Postprandial hypotension in older adults: Can it be prevented by drinking water before the meal?
- Tania Elliott, MD, clinical instructor in medicine at NYU Langone
- Mayo Clinic.og: "Dietary fiber: Essential for a healthy diet."
- Diabetes Care: "Vinegar Improves Insulin Sensitivity to a High-Carbohydrate Meal in Subjects With Insulin Resistance or Type 2 Diabetes"
- Mayo Clinic: Dizziness
- International Journal of Otolaryngology: "A Randomized, Double-Blind Trial Comparing Efficacy and Safety of Ginko Biloba Extract EGb 761 and Betahistine"
- American Journal of Physiology: Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology: "Effects of Ginger on Motion Sickness and Gastric Slow-Wave Dysrhythmias Induced by Circular Vection"
- Mayo Clinic: "Orthostatic Hypotension"
- American Academy of Family Physicians: "Motion Sickness"