Gerd Diet: Foods That Help With Acid Reflux
Getting a case of acid reflux once in a while isn’t unusual, but some people suffer from burning discomfort, bloating and belching almost every time they eat. About 20% of the population has gastroesophageal reflux disease , a chronic acid reflux condition that’s diagnosed by a doctor.
Normally, the esophageal sphincter protects the esophagus from stomach acid. However, if the sphincter relaxes, food can push upward through the loosened opening and cause acid reflux.
“Diet plays a major role in controlling acid reflux symptoms and is the first line of therapy used for people with GERD,” says Ekta Gupta, M.B.B.S., M.D., gastroenterologist with Johns Hopkins Medicine.
Chew Gum To Get Rid Of Heartburn
A research shows that people with gastroesophageal reflux disease got relief when they were asked to chew sugar-free gum for about half an hour after a meal. When you chew gum, it stimulates your salivary glands to increase the flow of saliva. This saliva washes away or neutralizes your stomach acid giving you instant relief from heartburn.
- Place the piece of sugar-free gum in your mouth after you have finished your meal.
- Now chew this for 25-30 minutes.
What Are The Best Sleeping Positions For Heartburn
Sleeping on your left side may reduce your heartburn symptoms because it relieves the pressure on your stomach and allows for food to move to the lower part of the stomach. Conversely, some research suggests that lying on your right side aggravates heartburn and GERD .
Sleeping with the head of your bed elevated is another good way for people with heartburn to slip into a restful slumber. Heartburn is a result of the stomach contents coming back up into the esophagus, so utilizing gravity by elevating the head and upper body helps keep your stomach contents where they should be. You can purchase wedge pillows that keep you propped up all night, thus reducing heartburn.
Additionally, you can opt to raise the top two posts of your bed frame to elevate your upper body when you sleep. Bed raisers are available online and come in different heights to fit your preference. Just make sure that if your bed frame does not have a sturdy footboard, you secure your mattress to prevent it from slipping.
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Dont Eat Within Three Hours Of Going To Bed
People with acid reflux are generally advised to avoid eating within the three hours before they go to sleep.
Although this recommendation makes sense, there is limited evidence to back it up.
One study in GERD patients showed that having a late evening meal had no effects on acid reflux, compared to having a meal before 7 p.m. .
However, an observational study found that eating close to bedtime was associated with significantly greater reflux symptoms when people were going to sleep .
More studies are needed before solid conclusions can be made about the effect of late evening meals on GERD. It may also depend on the individual.
Observational studies suggest that eating close to bedtime may worsen acid reflux symptoms at night. Yet, the evidence is inconclusive and more studies are needed.
What About Coffee For Heartburn
Get ready for some bad news: For many people, a morning cup of coffee is a strong heartburn trigger. While theres no hard medical research that coffee causes heartburn, theres enough anecdotal evidence that its best to steer clear if you cant identify the source of your discomfort. Or cut it out for a day or two to see how your body reacts. If eliminating coffee eases your symptoms, caffeine may be a trigger. Try decaf instead or one of these caffeine alternatives.
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How Our Acid Reflux Relief System Can Help
Our Acid Reflux Relief System is specially designed to provide relief from heartburn, acid reflux, GERD, and other associated conditions. In fact, clinical studies have revealed that individuals who used the Acid Reflux Relief pillow showed significant improvement in:
- Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease // Acid Reflux
- Laryngopharyngeal Reflux // Silent Reflux
- Gestational Reflux
Our three-part Acid Reflux Relief System is engineered to support the physician-recommended postureleft side, at an inclinefor optimal sleep with acid reflux. For more information on how MedCline can help, head over to our FAQ page for in-depth details on our products and more.
Does Heartburn Impact Mental Health
Heartburn symptoms can be distressing and painful. Although heartburn does not cause mental health disorders, there does appear to be a link between heartburn and an increase in depression and anxiety .
Heartburn symptoms can include chest pains. Heartburn patients report an increase in anxiety when experiencing chest pains. Depression and stress are known to impact the gastrointestinal system, and therefore may make heartburn worse. Additionally, heartburn can cause disruptions in sleep and there is evidence that poor sleep impacts mental health as well.
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Natural Remedy: Use Baking Soda
You may find relief from infrequent heartburn with sodium bicarbonate, otherwise known as baking soda. Simply mix ½ teaspoon with four ounces of water to help neutralize the acid. Note this contains sodium and should not be used if you are on a sodium-restricted diet. Check with your doctor if you are taking any prescriptions drugs, are pregnant or have a chronic health condition before using baking soda to relieve heartburn.
Home Remedies For Heartburn
Tags: Digestive Health & Disorders ,
That unpleasant feeling of your last meal coming back into your throat. That uncomfortable, even painful, burning sensation in your chest. Heartburn has returned.
Heartburn is the feeling you get when the contents of your stomach back up into the esophagus toward the mouth. It’s common to experience it from time to time.
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What Is The Quickest Way To Get Rid Of Heartburn
Taking antacids is considered the quickest way to get rid of heartburn. These over-the-counter medications help neutralize stomach acid. They are one of the first recommended treatments. They may provide quick relief. However, antacid overuse can cause problems such as diarrhea or chronic kidney disease, especially if they contain aluminum and magnesium.
Other common ways to get rid of heartburn include
- H2 receptor blockers: These medications work to reduce the amount of acid that is made in the stomach. While they do not work as quickly as antacids, they provide longer relief for up to 12 hours. Examples of these include Pepcid AC, Tagamet HB, Zantac and Axid AR. Although most people have no problems taking them, long-term use can cause vitamin B12 deficiency leading to an increased risk of bone fractures.
- Proton pump inhibitors: This class of medications block acid production. They also help to heal any damage caused to the lining of the esophagus. They are much stronger than the H2 receptor blockers and include Prevacid, Prilosec, Protonix and Zegerid. Excessive use of these medications can cause diarrhea and nausea, vitamin B12 deficiency and an increased risk of bone fractures.
- Baclofen: This medication works to strengthen the muscular valve present at the lower esophageal sphincter muscle. However, it may cause nausea and fatigue in some people.
- Surgical procedures: In rare cases, these are required to help with severe heartburn symptoms.
Dont Drink Too Much Citrus Juice
In a study of 400 GERD patients, 72% reported that orange or grapefruit juice worsened their acid reflux symptoms .
The acidity of citrus fruits doesnt appear to be the only factor contributing to these effects. Orange juice with a neutral pH also appears to aggravate symptoms .
Since citrus juice doesnt weaken the lower esophageal sphincter, it is likely that some of its constituents irritate the lining of the esophagus (
While citrus juice probably doesnt cause acid reflux, it can make your heartburn temporarily worse.
Most patients with acid reflux report that drinking citrus juice makes their symptoms worse. Researchers believe citrus juice irritates the lining of the esophagus.
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How To Get Rid Of Heartburn Naturally While Pregnant
How to get rid of heartburn with diet?
We already know acid reflux recurs most at night.
The relaxation after a hard day needs anything but the best. But, unfortunately, heartburns occur most when you try to rest at night.
So, the best way to get rid of heartburn when pregnant naturally might include some of these:
The highly rich whole-meal food is laced with zinc, manganese, and magnesium.
Oatmeal is not only easy to prepare but also easy to digest.
Moreover, oatmeal can be made as a part of a meal or dessert.
Regardless, it will boost metabolism whenever you decide to have a bowl. It also supports better intestinal health.
Pregnant women can eat it in smaller portions.
Its one of the most filling foods to get rid of heartburn while pregnant.
So, these were some of the foods that wont cause heartburn during pregnancy and can help avoid terrible acid refluxes.
Clearly, there are easy-to-get solutions with natural as well as medicinal options.
Now, let us look at the causes of heartburn during pregnancy.
How Is Gerd Treated
Treatment for GERD depends on how severe symptoms are. For some people, treatment may just include lifestyle changes, such as changing what they eat or drink. Others will need to take medicines. In very rare cases, when GERD is particularly severe, a doctor will recommend surgery.
These lifestyle changes can help ease the symptoms of GERD or even prevent the condition:
- quitting smoking
- avoiding carbonated beverages
- avoiding foods that trigger reflux
It also can help to not lie down for 3 hours after a meal and to not eat 2 to 3 hours before going to bed. Doctors sometimes also recommend raising the head of the bed about 6 to 8 inches. Before you start a major bedroom makeover, though, talk to your doctor and your parents about the best sleeping position for you.
If symptoms continue, doctors might prescribe medicine, such as:
- H2 blockers, which can help block the production of stomach acid
- proton pump inhibitors, which reduce the amount of acid the stomach makes
- prokinetics, which help the esophageal sphincter work better and the stomach empty faster. This can prevent reflux episodes.
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Take Time To Eat Slowly
Many reflux and heartburn symptoms begin after meals, and eating too muchviii and too quicklyix are classic heartburn catalysts. Having five or six small meals a day is better than several large ones.viii Take time to enjoy your food, chewing slowly and eating it in a relaxed manner to head off heartburn.
How To Best Treat Severe And Chronic Heartburn
Heartburn, a burning sensation behind the breastbone, is the most frequent symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease causing acidic stomach contents to be pushed up into the esophagus, the muscular tube connecting the mouth to the stomach. Troublesome heartburn is a very common medical condition, and affects approximately 15-20% of the adult population in western countries. In severe and chronic cases of heartburn, complications can occur and the internal lining of the esophagus can be damaged. Severe and chronic heartburn is also a risk factor for cancer of the esophagus .
It is still debated how to best treat severe heartburn. The two main treatment options are medication, using proton-pump inhibitors, and surgery. This study aimed to compare these treatment options in patients suffering from severe heartburn. We searched and evaluated the best available literature in the aspects of symptom control, quality of life, treatment complications, cancer risk, and cost-effectiveness.
Regarding symptom control, recurrence of heartburn seemed to be equally common following medication and surgery. However, surgery appeared to be slightly more effective regarding time per day with stomach acid in the esophagus.
Although the general quality of life is improved by both medication and surgery, it was slightly more improved following surgery.
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What The Experts Say
Elevating your head during sleep can be an effective lifestyle change for GERD.
You can also insert a wedge between your mattress and box spring to elevate your body from the waist up if it isnt possible to elevate the head of your bed. But just using additional ordinary pillows isnt effective.
Other lifestyle remedies for acid reflux and GERD include:
- eating smaller meals
When Can I Expect Heartburn To End
Someday, scientists may very well invent a miracle medication that promises permanent pregnancy heartburn relief. Unfortunately, that hasnt happened yet.
So, if youre wondering how long you can expect to deal with heartburn while youre pregnant, it will probably be throughout your entire pregnancy.
However, just because theres no cure, that doesnt mean you cant find some relief in the meantime.
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Let Your Stomach Loose
Tight waistbands or belts that dig into your stomach place unnecessary pressure on your abdomen.x Swallowing an antacid and undoing the button of your pants or taking your belt down a notch or two after eating will provide instant relief. Maintaining a healthy weight is, however, a better long-term solution.
Severe Heartburn: What Is It
In general terms, we refer to this condition when you experience more frequent symptoms that can significantly impair your quality of life.
This comes along with two things to consider:
- the duration of symptoms
- the intensity of symptoms
The latter is of particular importance because it frequently poses differential diagnosis problems with heart attacks.
However, heart attacks and severe heartburn have nothing in common and also have different origins.
In many cases, the occurrence of heartburn symptoms for a longer time and with a stronger intensity is a sign of real GERD.
This means that the acid reflux that underlies the symptoms is getting worse.
In these cases, severe heartburn is a way to recognize the condition and this allows us to act properly with the right treatments, to prevent some serious complications often related to untreated GERD.
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How Is Heartburn Diagnosed
Often all that a health-care professional requires is a thorough history and physical to make the preliminary diagnosis of heartburn. To evaluate if there is any damage and how severe your heartburn is, the doctor my suggest some of the following tests:
- Endoscopy: A flexible scope is passed down the esophagus to examine the esophagus as well as the stomach. Biopsies can be taken if indicated. This lets the doctor see if there is any obvious damage, and also eliminate other reasons for the patient’s symptoms .
- Upper GI series : After drinking a liquid that coats the inside of the digestive tract, X-rays are taken. These X-rays will show the outline of the digestive system.
- Ambulatory pH testing: This test measures the acidity in the esophagus via a small tube that goes through the nose into the stomach.
Medicines For Heartburn Relief
If youve adopted healthier habits and are still dealing with heartburn, a variety of medications are available over the counter to help control your symptoms. Calcium carbonate antacids neutralize stomach acid. Other medications, such as omeprazole and famotidine , decrease the amount of acid the stomach produces.
But even if you opt for these over-the-counter medicines,its still a good idea to talk to your doctor about your heartburn. He or she canrule out other problems and make sure youre using the best medication for yoursymptoms.
Long-term use of antacids may rarely lead to problems suchas vitamin and mineral deficiencies, so definitely loop in your physician ifyoure popping daily tablets.
For a small percentage of patients, lifestyle changes andmedications arent enough. Those folks can benefit from surgery calledfundoplication, which tightens the sphincter between the stomach and theesophagus.
The bottom line? Heartburn is a common problem. That mightnot feel like good news when youre tossing and turning in bed, feeling like afire-breathing dragon, but it means that doctors have a lot of experiencedealing with reflux and a lot of options to help you find relief.
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Treatment Options For Heartburn From Anxiety
Traditional heartburn treatments only have a moderate effect on anxiety heartburn. Eating smaller meals, taking antacids, and eating foods that do not contribute to heartburn are a good place to start. But they’re only going to do half the job, as many people that experience heartburn from anxiety fail to get complete relief when they utilize these treatments alone.
Some of those with anxiety claim to get relief from jogging and other forms of exercise. However, it should be noted that in general, exercise actually makes acid reflux temporarily worse. In the long term, though, it helps a lot with heartburn. While these options may prove helpful, there is one thing that should be considered first by people looking to get rid of their heartburn anxiety: address the root of the problem by treating your underlying anxiety!
Anxiety can trigger heartburn in several ways, from muscle tension to digestion changes to hormone alterations. It can also be a trigger for anxiety, especially in those with hypersensitivity as a result of panic attacks or health fears. Heartburn can often be treated with dietary changes and over-the-counter medications, although anxiety will need to be treated concurrently to keep the symptoms away.
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Heartburn Relief During Pregnancy
There are two reasons why pregnant women might get heartburn. First, during pregnancy a womans body starts releasing hormones that relax abdominal and pelvic muscles in preparation for delivery. This can also cause muscles like the one that controls the valve between the esophagus and the stomach to relax, allowing acidic bile to flow back toward the throat. Secondly, as the baby grows, it puts pressure on the stomach, which can also lead to acid reflux. Avoiding trigger foods may help, along with these other tips to reduce heartburn:
- Chew slowly and thoroughly to break down the food as much as possible for digestion.
- Drink your nutrients through protein and fruit shakes.
- Eat small meals throughout the day.
- Elevate your torsonot just your headwhile sleeping.
- Speak to your doctor or pharmacist about over-the-counter heartburn treatments during pregnancy.
- Try sleeping on your left side, which makes it harder for acid to move backward through the esophageal valve.
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Home remedies are an inexpensive and accessible way to treat heartburn pain. If the first remedy doesnt help, keep tryingeventually, one of these options will likely work for you. But if your heartburn keeps coming back or you find that its getting worse, speak with your doctor. Remember, heartburn is a symptomyou may need to treat the problem that is causing it.
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