Chances are you’ve experienced acid reflux at some point or another in your life. If you think that you haven’t, you may simply know it by one of its other names. Acid reflux is also commonly referred to as “indigestion”, “heartburn” or “pyrosis”. If you experience acid reflux regularly, you may also hear it referred to as gastroesophageal reflux disease, or “GERD”. Here’s a little more on the condition, as well as some key information on foods you should avoid if you do suffer from acid reflux.
What Does Acid Reflux Feel Like?
If you suffer from acid reflux, you will experience a burning sensation in your lower chest area. This occurs when stomach acid flows back up into the pipe that carries food from your mouth to your stomach. Now, if you experience acid reflux regularly, it’s a good idea to visit your doctor, who can give you an official diagnosis and prescribe medication like heartburn relief. But it’s also important to remember that lifestyle changes can significantly improve your condition too. Changing the foods you eat can result in a major reduction in instances of acid reflux in your day to day life. Below, we’ll outline just a few of the foods that you should actively avoid.
Foods with a High Fat Content
Wherever possible, avoid foods with a high fat content. Heartburn is caused by stomach acid making its way back up the food pipe from your stomach because your body’s lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is weak or damaged and doesn’t close properly. Foods with a high fat content – fried foods in particular – naturally cause the LES to relax. This means that you’re more likely to experience instances of acid reflux when you eat them. Wherever possible, cut out fatty meats, dairy products, lard, oil and grease.
There are no scientific studies proving that spicy foods can trigger acid reflux. However, many people are certain that they only experience the symptoms of heartburn when they eat spicy foods. Perhaps this is because people are eating spicy takeaway curries and then associating the spice with acid reflux, when actually it’s the fat and oils causing the issue, but there are people who vow it’s spice. If you find that you experience acid reflux after eating spicy foods, simply don’t eat the spicy foods.
Citrus fruits are also often held accountable for instances of heartburn. Eating citrus fruits on an empty stomach can raise acidity levels in your stomach, which can worsen acidity problems associated with acid reflux. So, reduce your consumption of lemons, limes and oranges if you want to reduce heartburn.
Alcohol doesn’t have many health benefits. So it’s probably not all too surprising that it’s not great in regards to acid reflux either. Alcohol relaxes the muscles that usually keeps stomach acid within your stomach. Cut down on drinking if you are experiencing acid reflux.
Heartburn is a relatively unpleasant condition to deal with – especially on a regular basis. Hopefully, some of the above information can prove instrumental in reducing instances of heartburn and the severity of any heartburn that you do experience!