Say Goodbye to Heartburn: 10 Natural Ways To Combat GERD

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Say Goodbye to Heartburn - 10 Natural Ways To Combat GERD - My Concierge MD

“Enjoying that burning sensation after every meal, aren’t you?”

Of course not!

Yet, this is the reality for 20% of Americans battling GERD. But guess what? Relief might just be a forkful away – just two steps to your kitchen.

This blog will uncover effective home remedies for GERD – from pantry staples to lifestyle adjustments to say goodbye to heartburn.

What Is GERD?

GERD, or gastroesophageal reflux disease, is a chronic condition that affects the upper digestive system. It occurs when the lower esophageal sphincter relaxes frequently, allowing stomach contents to flow back into the esophagus.

Diagnosis of GERD depends on symptoms and may involve additional tests. In children, diagnosis is based on history and physical exam.

Treatment for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) typically involves lifestyle changes, medication (such as proton pump inhibitors), endoscopy, and surgery.

What Are The Causes Of GERD?

The faulty lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is usually the main reason for GERD. But factors that may contribute to the weakening of the LES and the development of GERD include-

  • Obesity.
  • Pregnancy.
  • Smoking.
  • Fatty and spicy foods.
  • Certain medications, such as benzodiazepines, calcium channel blockers, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).

What Are 4 Symptoms Of Gerd?

Common signs and symptoms of GERD include-

  • A burning sensation (heartburn) in the chest after eating, especially at night.
  • Backwash (regurgitation) of food or sour liquid.
  • Upper abdominal or chest pain.
  • Trouble swallowing (dysphagia).

Other relatively uncommon symptoms include-

  • The sensation of a lump in the throat.
  • Constant cough.
  • Inflammation of the vocal cords (laryngitis).
  • New or worsening asthma.

10 Home Remedies For GERD

Several home remedies can help alleviate GERD symptoms. Here are 10 effective ones.

Dietary Adjustments

Do you know the most crucial question to ask yourself if you want to manage GERD – “What foods to avoid when you have GERD?” The answer is “all the GERD-triggering foods on the list.”

Foods That May Trigger GERD:

  • Highly acidic foods: Tomatoes, pineapple, and spicy foods as they can irritate the lining of the stomach and esophagus
  • Citrus fruits and juices: Acidic oranges, grapefruits, lemons, and limes, especially on an empty stomach.
  • Coffee and caffeinated drinks
  • Alcohol may relax the lower esophageal sphincter, leading to acid reflux
  • Mint
  • Fatty and fried foods: French fries, deep-fried onion rings, potato chips, butter, whole milk, cheese, and ice cream
  • Chocolate.

Foods That May Help and Prevent GERD:

  • Lean Proteins: chicken, turkey, and fish.
  • Whole Grains: brown rice, quinoa, and whole wheat.
  • Root Vegetables: Potatoes and carrots
  • Alkaline Foods: bananas, melons, oatmeal, cucumbers, green vegetables, etc., that can neutralize stomach acid.
  • Healthy fats: Avocado, nuts, and seeds.
  • Yogurt and other probiotic-rich foods

What Can I Drink To Relieve Gerd?

  • Coconut water.
  • Non-citrus fruit juice: apple or pear juice.
  • Aloe vera juice in moderation.
  • Almond milk and other non-dairy milk.
  • Baking Soda Solution (in moderation as it’s high in sodium)

Smaller But Frequent Meals

Eating smaller, more frequent meals is an excellent remedy for GERD. This approach reduces pressure on the Lower Esophageal Sphincter (LES) by preventing the stomach from overstretching, thus lowering the likelihood of acid reflux. It also facilitates faster stomach emptying, minimizing pressure on the LES.

Besides, smaller meals are easier to digest, helping to prevent common GERD symptoms like heartburn. It also aids in weight management, which is crucial since obesity is a strong risk factor for GERD.

No Meal Before Bed

If you have heartburn or GERD symptoms, avoid eating close to bedtime. Research suggests that a shorter duration between dinner and going to bed is significantly linked to a higher likelihood of GERD. So, eat your last meal at least 2-3 hours before sleeping.

This habit will help your stomach empty faster, reduce pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter (LES), and lower the risk of acid reflux.

No To Drinking And Smoking

Quit smoking and excessive alcohol to reduce the risk of GERD symptoms.

Smoking lowers the Lower Esophageal Sphincter (LES) pressure, worsening GERD symptoms. It also reduces saliva production, crucial for neutralizing and clearing acid in the esophagus.

Likewise, alcohol reduces LES pressure, causing reflux/heartburn, and damages the esophageal mucosa, making it vulnerable to acid damage. If you have been drinking heavily over a prolonged period, you can opt for alcohol detoxification.

Elevated Head During Sleep

Elevating the head during sleep is one of the effective home remedies for GERD. Elevating the head of the bed by 6-8 inches using gravity can prevent stomach acid from refluxing into the esophagus, reducing reflux episodes and heartburn while improving sleep quality.

You can elevate your sleeping position using bed risers or a wedge pillow. This elevation should start at the waist to avoid pressure on your stomach. Maintain it regularly for consistent relief.

However, if you have back or neck issues, consult a healthcare provider before making any adjustments.

Healthy Weight Management

A healthy weight is crucial for managing GERD symptoms. Excess weight, particularly around the abdomen, increases pressure on the stomach, leading to more acid reflux and exacerbating heartburn and other GERD symptoms.

Reducing abdominal fat eases the pressure on the stomach and the lower esophageal sphincter. Thus, it helps alleviate GERD symptoms.

Contact Dr. David Nazarian for a safe and effective weight loss program.

Wearing Loose-Fitting Clothing

Did you know that wearing comfy clothes can help reduce digestive distress? Yup, it’s true.

Tight clothing around the abdomen can cause digestive problems such as gastritis and heartburn by putting pressure on the stomach and impairing blood flow. Loose-fitting clothing is better for digestion and promotes ease of movement.

Herbal Remedies

Herbs like chamomile, licorice, marshmallow, and slippery elm are often used for managing GERD symptoms due to their anti-inflammatory and soothing properties. Studies show ginger’s anti-inflammatory properties may also alleviate acid reflux and discomfort with heartburn.

However, scientific evidence supporting these herbs’ effectiveness is limited.

So, exercise caution when using herbal remedies, as they may interact with medications or cause side effects. In some cases, certain herbs like peppermint can worsen heartburn symptoms.

Always consult a healthcare professional before using herbal treatments.

Sufficient Water

Drinking water can be beneficial in managing GERD symptoms as it dilutes stomach acid, reducing its potential to irritate the esophagus if it refluxes. Besides, water aids digestion, breaking down food more efficiently and reducing the likelihood of reflux. It can also help clear any refluxed acid from the esophagus, relieving heartburn discomfort.

Plus, drinking water before or during meals can help prevent overeating, a known trigger for GERD symptoms.

However, avoid excessive water intake, especially with meals, as it may increase stomach distension and worsen symptoms.

Does drinking hot water help acid reflux?

Hot water can have different effects on acid reflux. It can ease symptoms by diluting or neutralizing stomach acid or worsen reflux and heartburn by relaxing the lower esophageal sphincter (LES). Water temperature and consumption timing also play a role.

Stress-Relief Techniques

Stress-relief techniques can alleviate GERD symptoms as stress contributes to and worsens GERD. Some techniques include-

  • Breathing exercises help relax the diaphragm and other muscles related to digestion.
  • Progressive muscle relaxation: can help release tension in the body.
  • Meditation and deep breathing can help reduce stress and anxiety.
  • Yoga promotes mind-body awareness and can help relax both the body and mind.
  • Relaxation training helps reduce esophageal acid exposure.

Home Remedies For Gerd In Toddlers And Babies

Home Remedies For Gerd In Toddlers And Babies - My Concierge MDGERD is rare in babies, but GER is common. However, GERD can occur in babies with risk factors like Down syndrome or neuromuscular disorders. Symptoms include spitting up, vomiting, fussiness, and difficulty eating or swallowing.

You can use the following home remedies for GERD in toddlers and babies.

  • Yogurt.
  • Fennel seeds.
  • Coconut oil.
  • Apple cider vinegar.
  • Aloe vera.
  • Ginger.
  • Baking soda.

But always consult a healthcare professional for diagnosis and treatment.

How To Cure GERD Permanently?

Currently, no known cure for GERD can guarantee permanent relief from symptoms. However, several strategies can help manage and reduce the frequency and severity of GERD symptoms.

  • Lifestyle modifications include maintaining a healthy weight, avoiding trigger foods and beverages, eating smaller meals, etc.
  • Medications such as proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) and histamine receptor antagonists (H2RAs) can be prescribed to reduce stomach acid production.
  • Surgery is an option for severe GERD symptoms unresponsive to other treatments. Fundoplication involves wrapping the stomach around the lower esophageal sphincter to prevent reflux.

How Can I Relieve Gerd Quickly?

Several options are available to relieve GERD quickly. Here are some strategies for quick relief-

  • Lifestyle Changes: avoiding fast food, not eating for three to four hours before bed, staying healthy, eating smaller meals, avoiding alcohol and caffeine, and wearing loose-fitting clothing, etc.
  • Medications: Over-the-counter antacids, H2 blockers, such as ranitidine and famotidine, and Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), like omeprazole and lansoprazole.
  • Alternative Remedies: Herbal remedies like slippery elm, chamomile, licorice root, probiotics-rich foods, etc.
  • Acupuncture and relaxation techniques: deep breathing exercises and meditation

Home Remedy For Acid Reflux At Night

Home remedies for acid reflux at night include-

  • Prop yourself up in bed.
  • Take antacids
  • Yogurt
  • Try baking soda and water
  • Ginger tea

How To Get Rid Of Acid Reflux In Throat Fast At Home

Here are some home remedies to get rid of acid reflux in the throat quickly-

  • Eat sparingly and slowly.
  • Avoid trigger foods such as mint, fatty, spicy, tomatoes, onions, garlic, coffee, tea, chocolate, and alcohol.
  • Don’t drink carbonated beverages
  • Stay upright after eating
  • Chew non-mint gum that helps increase saliva
  • Drink cold milk
  • Try herbal teas.

Home Remedies For Acidity And Gas Problems

Dealing with acidity and gas can be troublesome. However, several home remedies can offer relief.

  • Apple Cider Vinegar: Mixing a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water and drinking it before meals can help balance stomach pH and prevent acid reflux.
  • Cumin Seeds: Boiling a teaspoon of cumin seeds in water, allowing it to cool, and drinking it after meals can provide a cooling effect on the stomach and reduce acidity.
  • Ginger: Boil ginger slices in water, simmer for a few minutes, and sip on it regularly.
  • Basil Leaves: Chew basil leaves or drink boiled basil water to get instant relief from acidity.
  • Cinnamon: Cinnamon is a natural antacid. Add half a teaspoon of cinnamon powder to water and drink it during meals to combat acidity.
  • Fennel Seeds: These seeds are carminative and can reduce bloating and gas. Chew them after meals or drink boiled and cooled seeds post meals.

Final Words

Several home remedies for GERD, such as changes in diet, sleeping position, meal time, etc., are effective in managing GERD. However, personalized professional care is always best for treating digestive discomfort.

My Concierge MD provides a personalized and convenient approach to achieving the excellent development you deserve.

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