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Home Remedies for Acid Reflux

Posted On: 06-30-2017
Home Remedies for Acid Reflux
Acid reflux, also known as heartburn, occurs when stomach acid backs up into your esophagus. The result is a burning sensation that can contribute to long-term problems if it happens frequently. Although over-the-counter antacids (often with calcium as the active ingredient) can be helpful, there are also some home remedies you could try.

Avoid Trigger Foods

There are a handful of foods that are known to trigger acid reflux symptoms, including:

  • Greasy foods
  • Fried foods
  • Citrus juice
  • Soda and caffeine beverages
  • Tomato-based foods, like tomato sauce
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Alcohol

You may be able to experience fewer symptoms by limiting or avoiding these foods. You can also try keeping a food diary in order to pinpoint which foods affect you the most.

Stay Upright

If you lie down right after eating, the pressure on your stomach can result in heartburn. Try staying upright for two to three hours after eating. You can also use extra pillows to elevate your head at night.

Long-Term Change

Heartburn seems to be most common in patients who are overweight or obese. The excess weight in the abdominal area can put increased pressure on your stomach, which can lead to stomach acids creeping back up into the esophagus. Losing one to two pounds per week is a manageable plan. If you are already at a healthy weight, continuing with healthy diet and exercise may help.

Additionally, quitting smoking can help to reduce heartburn episodes.

Considerations

There are many supplements that are claimed to reduce acid reflux, but you should talk to your doctor before taking anything that has not been prescribed. There are also some home remedies that are not as helpful as they seem—for example, drinking milk can relieve burning symptoms temporarily, but the fat in milk can contribute to more acid down the road.

Although home remedies may provide some relief, you should talk to your doctor if you experience acid reflux more than twice per week. This could be a sign (along with chest pain and coughing) of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) which can be managed with the help of your physician.

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