Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), or what’s more commonly known acid reflux is a digestive disorder in which stomach acid rise up through the esophagus. Gastric stomach acid is highly acidic so that it can assist the digestive system in breaking down food. Normally, this acid stays confined within the stomach chamber. There are times, however, when stomach acid may rise up and enter the esophagus connected to the throat, resulting in symptoms such as heartburn, burning throat, bad taste in bad of throat and loss of tooth enamel. If you suffer from acid reflux, you should consider the following tips to alleviate your symptoms and regain control of your life.
How Common Is Acid Reflux?
Affecting about 20 percent of the U.S. adult population, acid reflux is a very common digestive disorder. The good news is that most cases of acid reflux are temporary, with the symptoms residing on their own within a day or so. But some people experience chronic acid reflux that lasts for months or even years. For these unlucky individuals, eating meals and snacks often comes at the cost of harsh symptoms that affect their quality of life.
Avoid Fried and Fatty Foods
Limiting your consumption of fried and fatty foods can help alleviate the symptoms of acid reflux. Fried and fatty foods increase the risk of acid reflux in two ways. First, they encourage your stomach to produce more gastric acid so that it can break down the otherwise hard, difficult-to-digest food. Second, consuming fried and fatty foods has been shown to weaken the lower esophageal muscle. As this muscle weakens, gastric stomach acid can push through it more easily. Therefore, it’s recommended that you base your diet around lean, low-fat foods.
Eat Meals Slower
According to WebMD, eating meals too fast increases the risk of acid reflux. The popular health website cites a study involving 10 participants, half of whom were asked to eat a standard-sized meal in five minutes, while the other half were asked to eat the same-sized meal in 30 minutes. After analyzing the results, the study’s researchers concluded that eating slow resulted in 11.5 acid reflux episodes, whereas eating fast resulted in 15 acid reflux episodes. It’s unknown how or why eating fast contributes to acid reflux, though it could be attributed to the fact that many people overeat when consuming meals too fast. Regardless, take your time with your meals so that it doesn’t trigger an acid reflux episode.
Cut Back on Citrus Fruits
Fruit is an excellent source of vitamins, but you need to choose the right kind. If you suffer from acid reflux, limit your consumption of citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, grapefruits and limes. Consuming too many citrus fruits in your diet can increase the risk of acid reflux because of their acidic properties. Citrus fruits are more acidic than other, non-citrus fruits, and consuming them makes your gastric stomach acid more acid. You can still have an occasional piece of citrus fruit, assuming it doesn’t trigger any immediate symptoms of acid reflux, but you should avoid consuming them on a regular basis.
Eat More Vegetables
How many servings of vegetables do you eat in a typical day? Dietary guidelines advice consuming three servings of vegetables daily — a number that most Americans fall well short of achieving. If you don’t consume enough vegetables, you may experience worse and/or more frequent acid reflux episodes. Vegetables promote a healthy digestive system by providing your stomach with fibrous plant matter that flushes waste. Furthermore, they help reduce stomach acid so that acid reflux is less likely to occur.
Evaluate Your Medication
If you are currently taking any medication, check to see whether it’s known to cause or increase the risk of acid reflux. Antibiotics, for example, have been shown to irritate the esophagus and contribute to acid reflix. Some antidepressants, including Vanatrip and Endep, have also been shown to cause acid reflux. If you are currently taking any medications linked to acid reflux, talk to your primary care physician about an alternative. Your doctor may recommend a different medication with the same benefits that’s safe for digestive system.
Try an Antacid
Something as simple as an over-the-counter (OTC) antacid tablet may offer relief of your acid reflux symptoms. Antacid products are designed specifically to neutralize gastric stomach acid. They contain ingredients like simethicone that lower the acidity of your stomach acid. This is important because highly acidic stomach fluids are more likely to push their way up through the esophagus. If you consume an antacid tablet, however, it can make your stomach fluid less acidic while lowering your risk of acid reflux in the process.
If you suffer from acid reflux or other digestive disorders, contact us today. Atlanta Chiro and Wellness offers a wide range of services that can help alleviate and prevent digestive disorders.Share