Heart Burn And Acidity
Heartburn is a burning sensation in the chest or the upper portion of the stomach and could be triggered either due to overeating, indulging in certain foods and beverages, and even exercise. Acidity issues arise when there is an excess production of gastric acid due to triggers such as acidic foods, alcohol, dehydration, and stress. Many people confuse themselves with these two problems. However, it is only one symptom of acidity. This article will give you more clarity on these problems.
What is Heartburn?
Also known as acid reflux or acid indigestion, heartburn is a chronic cough and a burning sensation in the central chest. It happens when the stomach acid backs up into the esophagus – the tube that carries food from the mouth to your stomach. Pregnancy tends to aggravate the condition. Treating heartburn is important because over a period of time the reflux can damage your esophagus.
Though heartburn triggers differ from person to person, most people have similar heartburn symptoms. Some of the symptoms are:
- Chest pain usually happens after bending over, lying down or heavy meals. Those affected may often wake up from sleep in the middle of the night with heartburn. However, don’t assume it’s heartburn until your doctor tells you after a check up.
- Burning in the throat or a sour taste in the back of the throat.
- Difficulty in swallowing food.
- If there is acid reflux near the larynx (voice box) in the throat, it may cause coughing or hoarseness.
- Shortness of breath.
- Dizziness and cold sweat.
What is Acidity?
Acidity or Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) is a disorder of the stomach. It occurs when the LES, located between the esophagus and the stomach, loosens. This causes the acid from the stomach to flow back into the esophagus, causing a burning sensation. Your stomach naturally produces gastric or hydrochloric acid to help digest and break down food.
Symptoms Of Acidity
- Painful swallowing
- Bad breath
- Dry or a persistent cough
- Regurgitation of food
- Sleep disorder
- Sour taste
Read More: Symptoms of Acidity
Heartburn Due to Acidity
This happens right after a heavy meal. If you lie down right after your meal, your condition can worsen, especially if you lie down on the right side. Reason: the stomach is titled to the right and lying down on that side when the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) [Ref] is loose, can cause the acid to come out and burn the throat. Bending over or lifting something heavy can also cause a burning sensation. Heartburn related to acidity is at times accompanied by bloating of the stomach.
Heartburn Not Related to Acidity
This could be a symptom of some other health ailment such as heart attack, pneumonia, and pulmonary embolus. These symptoms could be accompanied by breathlessness, a sharp pain in the chest, fever, and dizziness. In most cases, the heartburn will persist, despite the antacid remedies being administered. If the heartburn is purely due to indigestion, you can try home remedies.
Foods That Fight Heartburn
Fennel: It not only improves digestion but also reduces acid reflux.
Broccoli: Broccoli’s low-acid content is particularly helpful as it won’t worsen acid reflux.
Quinoa: Whole grains like quinoa are low-acid food options and digested well by those suffering from this condition. Quinoa improves digestion and provides protein to the body.
Rice: Like other grains, rice absorbs excess acid in the stomach and helps to stop heartburn.
Bananas: Bananas are a heartburn-reducing tropical fruit that is easily digested.
Ginger: It soothes digestion, reduces acid reflux, and has powerful anti-inflammatory properties.
Apple juice: Unlike orange juice, which can worsen the condition, apple juice is refreshing for the stomach.
In our hectic lifestyle, acidity is one problem that catches us off guard. The varied spicy foods and heavy meals at irregular hours are a key cause for acidity. Although antacids can give you relief within an hour, they have some negative effects on your digestive system in the long term. Hence, include our healthy recipes in your regular diet to keep acidity at bay.