Chew Gum To Help Reduce Acid
Chewing gum encourages your mouth to produce more saliva and causes you to swallow more. The extra saliva can help clear acid out of your mouth, throat, and esophagus1.
In one study, people who chewed gum for half an hour after eating had less stomach acid in the esophagus2. Another study found that these results could be further boosted when people chewed gum containing bicarbonate3. Try popping a piece of gum after a heartburn-inducing meal.
Get Rid Of Heartburn With These Natural Fixes
You feel it coming on, that tell-tale burning sensation in your chest. Sitting, standing, lying down its all uncomfortable, and you need a solution to your indigestion woes.
Heartburn happens when stomach acid creeps up into your esophagus, and its a problem many of us have dealt with. You might reach for over-the-counter antacids and medications, but all too often those dont seem to provide enough relief. Luckily, you probably already have several natural, home remedies for heartburn in your pantry. These can be even more effective than antacids.
Adding Ginger Into The Diet
Some research suggests that ginger may help with nausea, vomiting, and other symptoms. However, the limited quality of included evidence means that more research is necessary to confirm these benefits.
Based on the existing evidence, researchers suggest a daily dose of of ginger. It is possible that a higher intake could have adverse effects.Ginger is an easy ingredient to incorporate into the diet. People can try:
- adding it to hot water to make ginger tea
- including it in a stir-fry
- boiling it in a soup
- grating it raw onto salads or cereals
Individuals who dislike the taste of ginger can mask it by including ginger in recipes with other strong flavors.
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Side Effects Of Antacids
Side effects from antacids are rare. However, they can occur, even when you use them according to the directions.
Avoid Your Trigger Foods
You may have already discovered that certain foods can trigger your heartburn and reflux symptoms. Try keeping a food and symptom diary to help you identify foods that worsen your reflux, so you know what to stay away from.
Here are some common food triggers:
- Tomatoes and tomato-based foods
Some people find that sweets, high-glycemic index foods , and meals that are too hot may trigger heartburn.
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Avoid Or Cut Down On Smoking And Drinking
If you’re a smoker, it’s time to quit, and if you regularly drink alcohol, it’s definitely worth considering cutting back or staying sober altogether.
“Both smoking and drinking alcohol have been known to irritate the digestive tract, so if there is already some inflammation and reflux happening, these habits may make the situation worse,” Dykstra explains.
Adopt New Bedroom Habits
Do you have trouble sleeping at night due to heartburn? If so, try sleeping on your left side this position seems to help. Experts also recommend keeping your upper body elevated to make it harder for acids to flow up the esophagus. Raise the head of your bed or use a thick wedge-shaped body pillow when sleeping to keep heartburn at bay.7
* Onset of acid neutralization does not imply the onset of symptom relief.
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Tips To Cure Heartburn
Be Careful What You Drink
Alcohol, coffee, and whole milk can all lead to heartburn, as can peppermint tea. Sodas and carbonated drinks may relax the LES and make your stomach acid more acidic, increasing your risk of heartburn. Highly acidic citrus juices such as orange and grapefruit can also cause acid reflux and heartburn in some people.13
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Does Heartburn During Pregnancy Mean My Baby Will Be Born With Hair
Suffering from severe heartburn? You may want to stock up on baby shampoo. Research has backed up the superstition that, on average, the more heartburn you have during pregnancy, the more likely your baby will be born with a full head of hair.
From the What to Expect editorial team and Heidi Murkoff, author of What to Expect When Youâre Expecting. What to Expect follows strict reporting guidelines and uses only credible sources, such as peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions and highly respected health organizations. Learn how we keep our content accurate and up-to-date by reading our medical review and editorial policy.
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Sleep On Your Left Side
If youre prone to nighttime acid reflux, you may want to rethink your sleep position. Many doctors suggest sleeping on an incline, which , may help keep stomach contents in the stomach. But the side you sleep on may also play a role.
Theres evidence you could have less acid reflux while sleeping on your left side, says Dr. Khan.
In fact, many of Dr. Khan’s patients who made the switch to sleeping on their left sides after previously sleeping mainly on their backs or right sides have seen a noticeable improvement in their heartburn symptoms, he says. Some research seems to back up the idea that sleeping on your right side can make heartburn symptoms worse: In a 2008 review of GERD studies published in JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers found that sleeping on the right side seemed to aggravate symptoms.
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Fridge & Pantry Staples
Almonds are especially good for digestion because their high oil content helps to neutralize stomach acid. Eat a handful of almonds and wait about 30 minutes for your heartburn to disappear.
19. Apple Cider Vinegar
As surprising as it sounds, acidic apple cider vinegar can help calm heartburn and promote digestive health. Stir 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar into 1/2 cup of water and drink immediately after a potentially heartburn-inducing meal. You can also find apple cider vinegar tablets if youd prefer not to drink it.
20. Baking Soda
Baking soda is a natural antacid that can alleviate heartburn caused by acid reflux. Stir 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda into 1 cup of water, and drink to neutralize acid.
Drink 1/2 cup of ice cold buttermilk to help soothe heartburn. Adding fermented milk products like buttermilk into your regular diet can help correct acid reflux problems over time.
Mustard is surprising and little-known remedy for heartburn. Its supposed to work because of its turmeric content To soothe heartburn, add 1 teaspoon of yellow mustard to 1/2 cup of water and drink.
Potato juice not only helps to neutralize excess stomach acid, but it can also help heal the lining of your esophagus. Juice one raw potato and add to an equal amount of cold water. Stir well and drink right away for the best result.
If you have frequent or severe heartburn, talk to your doctor. It could be a symptom of a more serious condition.
What Causes Heartburn And What Does It Feel Like Exactly
Stomach acid is needed to break down the food you eat, something your stomach has no trouble handling. Your esophagus, on the other hand, is irritated by it.
To keep stomach acid in your stomach and out of your esophagus, a circular ring of muscle at the tube’s base, called the lower esophageal sphincter, acts as a valve. When this valve is relaxed, food you’ve consumed is allowed to pass through to your stomach. When contracted, this valve prevents this food and acid from backing up into your esophagus.
If this valve relaxes abnormally and stomach acid is allowed to travel back into your esophagus, acid reflux occurs. Heartburn is the most well-known and obvious symptom.
It can feel differently depending on its severity, but heartburn symptoms include:
- A burning sensation in your chest, behind your breastbone
- Burning pain that rises up toward your throat
- Having a bitter or sour taste in your mouth
Acid reflux and heartburn are sometimes caused by an underlying medical condition, or even a medication you’re taking in some cases. But, more often than not, they’re triggered by things like your diet and lifestyle choices making the occasional bout of heartburn fairly common.
Common triggers of heartburn include:
- Overeating or eating too quickly
- Lying down too soon after eating
- Consuming certain foods, including caffeine, carbonated beverages, alcohol, peppermint, citrus, tomato-based products, chocolate and fatty or spicy foods
- Being overweight
- Stress and anxiety
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What Is Acid Reflux During Pregnancy
People use the terms heartburn and acid reflux to mean the same thing. But they have different definitions:
- Acid reflux refers to the LES not tightening as it should. This allows the stomach acid to travel from your stomach up to your esophagus.
- Heartburn, the feeling of pain or burning in your chest, is a symptom of acid reflux.
Women may have acid reflux during pregnancy and experience heartburn due to changing hormone levels and the baby growing.
Resist The Urge To Overeat Or Eat Quickly
When it comes to preventing heartburn, watching portion sizes at meals can go a long way. Having a large amount of food in your stomach may put more pressure on the valve that keeps stomach acid out of your esophagus, making acid reflux and heartburn more likely. If you’re prone to heartburn, consider eating smaller meals more frequently. Eating quickly can also be a trigger of heartburn so be sure to slow down and take time to chew food and drink beverages.
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Chew Your Food Properly
Our elders always told us to chew our food thoroughly before ingesting it. Turns out, it indeed is a great piece of advice. Our stomach has to work really hard to break the food down when we dont chew properly. This not only makes the process of absorption of nutrients difficult but also hinders the entire digestive process thus paving the way for indigestion and consequently acidity.
On the other hand, you eliminate the possibility of acidity to a large extent when you chew your food well and allow it to reach your stomach and intestines in a much more digestible form. Also, take care to finish your meals 2-3 hours before bedtime so your stomach gets ample time to carry out the digestive process and empty itself.
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.
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Limit Your Intake Of Carbonated Beverages
Healthcare professionals sometimes advise people with GERD to limit their intake of carbonated beverages.
This is because studies have observed that regular consumption of carbonated or fizzy beverages, including soft drinks, club soda, and seltzer, could be linked to a higher risk of reflux .
One study found that carbonated soft drinks, in particular, worsened certain acid reflux symptoms, including heartburn, fullness, and burping .
The main reason is that the carbon dioxide gas in carbonated beverages causes people to burp more often an effect that can increase the amount of acid escaping into the esophagus .
Drinking carbonated beverages temporarily increases the frequency of burping, which may promote acid reflux. If they worsen your symptoms, try drinking less or avoiding them altogether.
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Heartburn most commonly causes a burning sensation in your chest, right behind your breastbone.
It can also result in other symptoms, including:
- Pain in your chest whenever you bend over or lie down
- A bitter, hot, or sour taste in the back of your throat
- A burning sensation in your throat
- Trouble swallowing
While heartburn symptoms can occur anytime after eating, people most commonly experience acid reflux right after they eat, especially if they overeat, or if they bend over or lie down too soon after eating.
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H2 Receptor Blockers Vs Proton Pump Inhibitors
Proton pump inhibitors are another type of medication used to reduce stomach acid and treat acid reflux or GERD. Examples of PPIs include esomeprazole and pantoprazole .
Both medications work by blocking and decreasing the production of stomach acid, but PPIs are considered stronger and faster in reducing stomach acids. However, H2 receptor blockers specifically decrease the acid released in the evening, which is a common contributor to peptic ulcers. This is why H2 receptor blockers are specifically prescribed to people who have ulcers or who are at risk for getting them. PPIs are more often prescribed for people who have GERD or acid reflux.
Doctors usually dont recommend taking both a PPI and an H2 receptor blocker at the same time. H2 receptor blockers can interfere with the effectiveness of PPIs. If your GERD symptoms dont improve with the use of a PPI, your doctor may recommend an H2 receptor blocker instead.
Take A Mindful Eating Approach
Eating quickly and overeating are connected to heartburn and reflux. Sometimes you may not even realize that you’re eating quickly. You may not notice that you keep eating even after your body is signaling that it’s full.
Practicing mindful-eating techniques may help you slow down and listen to what your body is telling you. Here’s how:
- Pause before each meal. Take a moment to look at your meal. Observe what is on your plate and enjoy the way the food smells. Also, take a moment to notice how hungry you are before you take your first bite.
- Eliminate distractions at mealtime. Avoid reading, checking your phone, or watching television while you eat.
- Chew each bite thoroughly.
- Eat smaller meals rather than big meals. Overeating puts more pressure on your lower esophageal sphincter.
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