The symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can be managed in a number of ways, such as avoiding food triggers, making dietary adjustments, sleeping with your head raised, and using supplements like ginger.
You could have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) if you suffer acid reflux more frequently than twice per week. Heartburn is one of numerous symptoms in this scenario, along with coughing and chest pain.
ANTACIDS and other over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, together with dietary or lifestyle changes, are frequently used to treat GERD. In extreme circumstances, prescription drugs can be required to stop esophageal damage.
Even though medicine is the most popular GERD treatment, there are several at-home solutions you can try to lessen acid reflux symptoms.
Foods That May Cause Heartburn
According to Gupta, foods that are frequently identified as heartburn triggers induce the esophageal sphincter to relax and postpone digestion, causing food to remain in the stomach for a prolonged period of time. The worst offenders? foodstuffs with a lot of fat, salt, or spice, like:
- Chips and other processed foods
- White, black, and cayenne pepper and chili powder
- Bacon and sausage are examples of fatty meats.
- Pizza, fried and fast food
Try relaxation techniques
Stress from GERD itself might be very high. Learning methods that can help you relax your body and mind may be beneficial because esophageal muscles play a significant part in keeping stomach acids where they belong: down.
Yoga encourages mind-body awareness, which has several advantages. If you’re not a yogi, you can attempt calming meditation and deep breathing multiple times a day for a short period of time to reduce your tension.
Avoid tight clothing
Feel free to dress however you choose, but remember that tight clothing may make GERD symptoms worse.
Too-tight clothing can make acid reflux attacks more frequent. This is particularly true of tight bottoms and belts, both of which put undue pressure on the abdomen and raise the risk of heartburn. Consider wearing looser garments if you get heartburn problems.
Potential herbal remedies
These ingredients, including slippery elm, chamomile, marshmallow, and licorice, are also offered as teas, tinctures, and dietary supplements.
The drawback of these herbs is that not enough trials have been done to show they can effectively cure GERD. Additionally, see a doctor before using them as they can conflict with any medications you are taking.
Herbs and supplements are not under the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) supervision.
However, according to individual testimonies, using herbs can be a safe and efficient strategy to lessen GERD symptoms. Make sure you get your herbs from a dependable supplier.
Quitting smoking can improve your condition if you smoke and have GERD or heartburn.
The lower esophageal sphincter (LES), which keeps stomach juices from backing up, is harmed by smoking. Smoking can weaken the LES muscles, which can lead to more frequent heartburn attacks.
If you have GERD or acid reflux, secondhand smoke may be an issue as well.
Eat foods that help
Acid reflux cannot be treated by any miraculous food. Still, a few other dietary modifications can be helpful in addition to avoiding trigger foods.
First, meals high in protein and low in fat are advised by the American Academy of Family Physicians. Your symptoms may improve if you consume less fat, and consuming enough protein and fiber will help you feel full and prevent overeating.
To ease with acid reflux, try adding specific items to your diet. You might even think about eating non-mint gum after each meal. This may promote saliva production and prevent acid from entering the esophagus.
Eat a little, sit up a little longer
Smaller meals relieve strain on the stomach, which can stop stomach acids from refluxing. You can lessen heartburn and consume fewer calories by eating smaller meals more frequently.
After eating, it’s crucial not to lie down. This may result in heartburn.
To prevent nocturnal heartburn, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) advises elevating your head with pillows.
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Manage your weight
Although anybody can experience heartburn, it appears that adults who are overweight or obese are more likely to experience GERD.
The stomach is under additional pressure when a person is overweight, particularly in the abdomen. You run a higher risk of having heartburn as a result of stomach acids refluxing into the esophagus.
Utilize a balanced diet and consistent exercise to control your weight. If you think lowering weight could help with your GERD symptoms, talk to your doctor about it.
Elevate the head of your bedPlace wood or cement blocks under the feet at the head end of your bed if you frequently get heartburn while attempting to fall asleep. 6 to 9 inches should be added to the head end. If you are unable to raise your bed, you can elevate your body from the waist up by inserting a wedge between your mattress and box spring. Pillowing your head higher with more won’t help.
Don’t lie down after a mealPrior to lying down or going to sleep, give yourself at least three hours after eating.
Start on your left sideTo reduce your risk of experiencing reflux, start by lying on your left side when you go to bed.
Home treatments can help with some GERD situations as well as the occasional heartburn episode. You run a larger risk of esophageal injury when acid reflux lasts for a long time without being addressed. This can include esophageal cancer, ulcers, and a constricted esophagus.
These treatments might not be sufficient to treat GERD and acid reflux. Discuss how some of these treatments might support a medical treatment plan with a gastroenterologist.