Acid Reflux: Causes And 10 Foods That Help Prevent Acid Reflux (GERD)
Are you experiencing a burning sensation in your chest after your meals, particularly at night? Is an unpleasant bitter taste in the mouth due to regurgitation bothering you? Then, you might be suffering from acid reflux or GERD (Gastrointestinal Reflux Disease). You suffer from GERD when stomach acid flows reverse into the esophagus quite often. The digestive disorder affects the lower esophageal sphincter (LES), a circular band of muscles between your stomach and esophagus, and damages the lining of your esophagus. Millions of people worldwide suffer from GERD. Heartburn or burning in the chest, regurgitation of sour fluid or food, and chest pain are some of the most common GERD symptoms.
If GERD is left untreated, it increases your risk of tooth decay, esophagus damage, esophageal ulcer, and cancer of the esophagus. Although you may experience instant relief with the allopathic treatment, the acid reflux symptoms may recur soon after you curb using these medicines. Also, conventional treatment may make you experience some side effects. Fortunately, you have a GERD diet plan to manage the condition naturally without any side effects. Read to learn about the causes and the best foods for acid reflux.
Causes of GERD:
You suffer from GERD when you experience acid reflux quite often. LES (lower esophageal sphincter) is located at the end of your esophagus; it lets food and fluids enter your stomach by relaxing itself, and, later, once the food passes into the stomach, it closes. When this LES weakens or relaxes abnormally, you experience acid reflux frequently. This can irritate your esophageal lining; thereby making it inflamed. Here are some common health conditions that can increase your vulnerability to GERD symptoms.
- Disorders of connective tissue, such as systemic scleroderma
- Hiatal hernia
- Delayed stomach emptying
Some habits or factors can worsen your acid reflux symptoms; they are:
- Having a heavy meal just before going to bed
- The intake of fried or spicy foods
- Drinking an excess of caffeinated beverages, such as coffee and tea
- Alcohol consumption
- Certain medications, such as aspirin
Symptoms of GERD:
Here’s a list of some common GERD symptoms that you should be aware of.
- Burning chest pain behind the breastbone that proceeds up towards your throat and neck.
- Sour or bitter taste in the mouth
- Bad breath
- Difficulty in swallowing
- A lump in your throat
- A lingering cough
- Wearing away tooth enamel
10 Best Foods That Help Prevent Acid Reflux (GERD):
You suffer from GERD discomforts, such as pain and irritation, due to the reverse flow of stomach acid into the esophagus. Including certain foods in your diet can help you manage the excess stomach acid and prevents its backflow. Here’s a list of the best foods for acid reflux that you can incorporate into your acid reflux diet plan.
- Alkaline Foods:
The pH scale is an indicator of acid levels. Foods having low pH happen to be acidic; eating them may make you suffer from acid reflux. Foods having higher pH values are alkaline, and these are the best foods for acid reflux. The intake of these foods can help reduce the effect of strong gastric acid greatly; thereby preventing acid reflux. So, incorporate alkaline foods in your GERD diet plan. Alkaline foods that can help prevent GERD are bananas, cauliflower, nuts, melons, and fennel.
- Watery Foods:
Foods containing high water content have the potential to dilute and weaken gastric acid. This helps prevent GERD symptoms. So, include healthy foods with high water content, such as cucumber, watermelon, celery, lettuce, and broth-based soup, in your acid reflux diet plan. (Title: Diet Plan for Acid Reflux)
- High-Fibre Foods:
Eating foods rich in fibre makes you feel full and prevents you from overeating, which is one of the factors responsible for heartburn. So, enrich your GERD diet plan with nutritious foods rich in fibre that include:
- Root vegetables:Beets, sweet potatoes, and carrots
- Whole grains:Brown rice and oatmeal
- Green vegetables:Broccoli, green beans, and asparagus
- Non-Citrus Fruits:
Citrus fruits contain citric acid in large quantities. Eating them may trigger acid reflux symptoms. So, add non-citrus fruits, such as pears, melons, apples, and bananas, to your daily diet.
This common cooking ingredient is known for its powerful anti-inflammatory effects, which alleviate heartburn and other issues related to the gastrointestinal system. So, it offers you an effective gastroesophageal reflux disease treatment with diet. Grate fresh ginger root and add it to your daily cooking preparations or smoothies. You may also drink a cup of ginger tea to prevent acid reflux.
- Lean Meats and Seafood:
Low in fat, lean meats and seafood can help prevent or minimize your GERD symptoms. So, you can add chicken and fish to your diet.
- Egg Whites:
Egg white is a low-cholesterol, low-fat, and low-acidic food that serves as a great option to mitigate acid reflux. So, you may go for egg white. However, restrict your intake of egg yolks, which are high in fat and may trigger reflux discomforts.
- Healthy Fats:
Having healthy fats in your diet helps avoid acid reflux. So, include olive oil, avocadoes, flaxseeds, sunflower oil, walnuts, and sesame oil in your diet. Minimize your intake of saturated fats and eliminate trans fats from your diet. Replace them with foods containing healthier unsaturated fats.
Begin your day with oatmeal in your breakfast, as it is a rich source of fibre. Eating oatmeal and other whole-grain bread or brown rice minimizes the risk of GERD symptoms.
Low in sugar and fats, vegetables are nutritious options that you can include in your acid reflux diet plan to prevent GERD symptoms. So, make culinary delights by using beans, cauliflower, broccoli, cucumbers, asparagus, leafy greens, and potatoes.
7 Helpful Diet and Lifestyle Tips to Prevent Acid Reflux:
Here are some effective dietary and lifestyle modifications that can help you avoid discomforting GERD symptoms.
- Opt for Smaller Meals:When you eat heavy meals, it creates high pressure in your stomach that relaxes your LES, thereby letting your stomach acid flow up into the esophagus. Eating small meals more often can help minimize your stomach pressure and prevent acid flux. Avoid snacking unless you are hungry, as snacking now and then even when you are not hungry can increase the pressure in your stomach.
- Eat Food Slowly and Properly:Prefer eating smaller bites of food by chewing them well. So, you don’t stuff yourself and this lowers the chances of irritation of your esophagus or stomach.
- Do Not Sleep or Lie Down Immediately after Eating: If you lie down soon after eating, it makes it easier for the contents in your stomach to enter the esophagus, thereby increasing the chances of acid reflux. So, sit or stand upright for 2 to 3 hours after having your meals to minimize the risk of acid reflux symptoms. Also, make sure that there is a gap of a minimum of 3 to 4 hours between your dinner and bedtime.
- Do Not Wear Very Tight Clothing Around Your Waist:Wearing tight clothing around your waist while you eat might trigger acid reflux, as such tight outfits exert pressure on your stomach. So, to avoid acid reflux, wear comfortable outfits that do not put pressure on your stomach.
- Maintain a Healthy Weight:Obesity, overweight, or having excess belly fat increases abdominal pressure. This may lead to a reverse flow of stomach acid, thereby triggering GERD symptoms. Maintaining a healthy weight prevents an increase in stomach pressure and helps avoid acid reflux.
- Avoid Alcohol Consumption:The intake of alcohol affects acid reflux adversely. It is one of the heartburn foods which increases your risk of suffering from burning chest pain. Heavy drinking is also harmful to your health. Alcohol consumption can weaken the LES and trigger discomforts of acid reflux. So, avoid it. Smoking reduces the LES pressure and triggers heartburn. So, quit smoking.
- Say No to Foods that Can Trigger Acid Reflux:While you eat various nutritious best foods for acid reflux, you should avoid eating foods that may trigger acid reflux or worsen GERD symptoms. Carbonated beverages, citrus fruits, citrus juices, chocolate, caffeine, tomato or tomato-based foods, fatty foods, spicy foods, and fried foods are foods that you should avoid to prevent acid reflux symptoms.
If you wish to obtain relief from GERD symptoms naturally and safely, opt for gastroesophageal reflux disease treatment with diet. Health experts at Health Total use their expertise in offering you personalized, integrated treatment for acid reflux with homeopathy, diet, and Ayurveda. Such a natural treatment not only helps soothe your acid reflux symptoms but also manages your weight, nourishes you with crucial nutrients, and boosts your immunity. Our certified nutritionists ensure that your GERD diet plan contains the best foods for acid reflux that ease your symptoms and prevent acid reflux triggers, and they eliminate foods that may aggravate the acid reflux symptoms or trigger the condition. So, you experience immense gastrointestinal comfort with our integrated treatment. Waste no time, reach out to us at Health Total and obtain relief from your GERD complaints safely and smoothly with our customized natural gastroesophageal reflux disease treatment.
Sign up for a FREE consultation with Health Total experts to get more tips on acid reflux diet plans or for managing any other health condition. Call toll-free at 1-800-843-0206 and book an appointment!