Many of us have experienced a sharp, scorching pain in the centre of our chests. Acid reflux, frequently called “acidity”, is rather typical. It occurs so frequently that most people choose to disregard it.
Health professionals agree that chronic acidity shouldn’t be ignored, even though occasional acidity is nothing to worry about. This is because persistent acid reflux may signify a more serious illness.
It’s crucial to learn more about acid reflux and, most importantly, how to treat it naturally to reduce the risk of difficulties in the future.
What Is Acidity or Acid Reflux?
Acidity or acid reflux is a disease that causes stomach acid to surge into the food pipe (esophagus). The telltale symptom of this illness is heartburn — a painful and burning sensation in the chest.
Our stomach receives the food we eat after it passes through the esophagus. Gastric glands in the stomach produce hydrochloric acid to aid in food digestion. We get lower chest heartburn when the gastric glands release more acid than necessary.
Acid reflux occurs occasionally and is perfectly harmless. On the other hand, stomach acid can burn the lining of the esophagus if it occurs too frequently.
Symptoms of Acid Reflux
The following are some of the most common symptoms of acid reflux:
- Heartburn (a burning sensation in the chest that typically occurs after eating and may get worse at night)
- Pain in the chest cavity while bending over or lying down
- A bitter or acidic sensation brought about by regurgutating food or sour liquid
- Sore throat
- Trouble swallowing food
Factors That Contribute To Acid Reflux
Certain foods and drinks are notorious for causing acid reflux. Among them are
- Spicy and fried foods
- Alcohol, carbonated drinks, and caffeinated drinks
- Citric fruits and liquids
- Tomato ketchup and tomatoes
- Other variables that can contribute to or exacerbate acid reflux include eating large, fatty meals frequently, lying down just after eating, constipation, smoking, obesity, pregnancy, and hiatal hernia (a condition in which the upper part of the stomach bulges up into the diaphragm).
15 Ways To Relieve Acid Reflux Without Medication
Doctors may suggest home remedies to help you manage acidity’s frequently painful and distressing symptoms. They may advise you to avoid food triggers, eat more often, and eat dinner well before going to bed..
Based on our experience and research, we’ve found 15 home treatments that’ll help you avoid acidity problems.
1. Don’t Drink Carbonated Beverages
Sometimes medical practitioners advise patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) to reduce consumption of fizzy beverages.
Research has found a possible link between regularly consuming carbonated or fizzy drinks, such as soft drinks, club soda, and seltzer, and an increased risk of reflux. One study discovered that specific acid reflux symptoms, such as heartburn, fullness, and burping, were made worse by carbonated soft drinks.
2. Eat Sparingly and Slowly
There may be greater reflux in the esophagus when the stomach is full. You might want to try “grazing” or eating smaller meals more frequently rather than three meals a day, if it works with your schedule.
Eating too quickly might cause weight gain and reduce meal pleasure. However, slowing down can make you feel full faster and encourage weight loss.
You’ll be well on your way to slower eating if you cut down on your screen time, chew your food thoroughly, and prioritize high-fibre foods.
3. Avoid Certain Foods
Foods frequently identified as heartburn triggers induce the esophageal sphincter to relax and delay digestion, causing food to remain in the stomach for a prolonged period. The worst offenders are foods with a lot of fat, salt, or spice, like
- Fried foods
- fast food
- Chips and other processed foods
- Pepper and chilli powder (white, black, cayenne)
- Bacon, sausage, other fatty meats
- Tomato sauce or anything based with tomato sauce
- Carbonated beverages
You can alleviate symptoms of acid reflux and your need for antacids by changing your food and eating routine.
4. Don’t Move Too Fast
When you exercise vigorously or in jarring motions, your stomach acid may be forced into your esophagus, which may burn and irritate you.
Giving food enough time to digest can significantly lower the likelihood of heartburn.
Before putting on your cross-trainers, wait at least an hour or two after eating. After a moderate-sized dinner, most people can wait 1–2 hours, whereas a snack can wait at least 30 minutes.
Nevertheless, the danger of negative effects increases with exercise intensity.
5. Don’t Sleep Immediately After a Meal
According to medical experts, wait at least three hours before going to bed after a meal. This gives your body time to digest your food to avoid acidity problems, indigestion, or acid reflux at night. And it aids in maintaining sleep.
If you go to bed right after eating, you may experience indigestion, heartburn, and other digestive issues that keep you up at night.
Over time, you also increase your risk of becoming overweight, obesity, and other health issues. A heavy dinner may also increase the likelihood of tiredness, and particular foods like red and white meat and nutrients like amino acids may also play a role in this.
6. Sleep on an Incline
Supine or nocturnal gastroesophageal reflux typically happens at night before or during sleep when acid flows back up to a person’s eesophagus while lying down. A person with this illness may experience sleep problems.
Another technique to raise your bed is with risers made of plastic or wood. The stomach lies after the esophagus so when bed risers are placed under the two bedposts at the top, increasing the likelihood that stomach acid will remain inside the stomach rather than flowing backwards into the foodpipe.
7. Quit Smoking
According to studies, smokers are far more likely to experience acid reflux than non-smokers.
One year after giving up smoking, 43.9% of 141 former smokers who participated in the study reported having less GERD. The acid reflux symptoms did not improve over time for the smokers in the control group who didn’t quit. The experts advised individuals with severe GERD to stop smoking to lessen their symptoms.
8. Lose Weight if It is Advised
Acid reflux and being overweight are strongly related. One of the best lifestyle adjustments you can make to lessen heartburn and your risk for other health issues is to lose weight. Keep to your treatment schedule if you have GERD to prevent esophageal injury.
Women who lost even 5% to 10% of their total body weight had lower risk of heartburn. Men had to lose more than 10% to see their heartburn symptoms improve.
9. Check Your Medications
The following prescription drugs and nutritional supplements can exacerbate GERD and worsen acid reflux:
- Anticholinergic medications, such as oxybutynin (Ditropan XL), which are recommended for irritable bowel syndrome and overactive bladder.
- Tricyclic mood stabilisers (amitriptyline, doxepin, others).
Following the administration of some drugs, avoid lying down. For example, to avoid heartburn, you should remain upright for at least 30 minutes after taking bisphosphonates and for at least 15–20 minutes after taking anti-anxiety drugs or sleep aids.
10. Avoid Overeating
Heartburn may result from increased pressure on the LES. Try eating six small meals daily, or three small meals and three snacks, instead of three large meals. This will prevent you from feeling too full. Additionally, it’ll aid in reducing excessive stomach acid production.
Acid reflux risk can rise as a result of overeating. This is also called Gastroesophageal reflux disease. Food enters the stomach through the esophagus when we swallow. The lower esophageal sphincter, a valve, is located at the start of the stomach is responsible for keeping the food from re-entering the esophagus. But when we overeat, the pressure from the stomach can weaken this valve and push food mixed with stomach acids back into the esophagus causing heartburns.
11. Reduce Alcohol Intake
Alcohol use may make acid reflux and heartburn worse. Some researchers have suggested a connection between increased alcohol use and greater acid reflux symptoms. Alcohol worsens symptoms by boosting stomach acid, loosening the lower esophageal sphincter, and reducing the esophagus’ capacity to expel acid.
Even though more studies are required, several previous ones have found that drinking wine or beer worsens reflux symptoms, particularly when compared to simply drinking water. So people with symptoms of GERD are advised to abstain from alcohol.
12. Avoid Carbonated Beverages
One study indicated that specific acid reflux symptoms, such as heartburn, fullness, and burping, were made worse by carbonated soft drinks. Carbonated drinks are slightly acid in nature and can increase the overall acidty of the stomach. This can directly lead to acid reflux and heartburns.
Drinking sodas can also harm your smile, possibly causing cavities and even tooth decay. When you consume soda, the sugars in it react with the oral bacteria to produce acid which can soften enamel leading to decay.
13. Drink Less Citrus Juice
Numerous citrus juices, such as orange and grapefruit juice, are typical heartburn culprits. They contain ascorbic acid and other extremely acidic chemicals. If you drink them excessively, you may experience indigestion.
The acidic chemicals in citrus juice may aggravate the lining of the esophagus. All juice is acidic since it has a pH of 7 or less. However, some juices are more tolerable than others.
14. Limit Intake of Caffeinated Beverages
For the majority of healthy adults, 400 mg of caffeine per day seems to be safe. That’s approximately equal to the amount of caffeine in two “energy shot” beverages, ten cans of cola, or four cups of brewed coffee. Different drinks have different amounts of caffeine, especially energy drinks.
According to one of several studies, coffee momentarily loosens the lower esophageal sphincter, increasing the risk of acid reflux.
However, when researchers used a tiny camera to examine the symptoms of acid reflux, they discovered drinking coffee was associated with more severe acid damage to the esophagus.
Therefore, the effect of coffee on acid reflux may vary from person to person. It’s advisable to skip coffee entirely or consume it in moderation if you experience heartburn after drinking it.
15. Get Enough Sleep
Some people suffer nighttime reflux symptoms, which can impair sleep quality and make it harder to fall asleep. Elevating the head of your bed as you sleep may reduce acid reflux symptoms and enhance your sleep quality.
According to a study, elevating the head of the bed reduced acid reflux and its symptoms, including heartburn and regurgitation in persons with GERD. Another study found that those who elevated their upper bodies using a wedge while sleeping experienced less acid reflux than those who slept flat.
While changing your lifestyle can frequently enhance the quality of your sleep, some persons with GERD may require medical attention. Consult your doctor to help you develop an optimal course of treatment.
Make Lifestyle Changes To Avoid Acidity Problems
Acidity is a painful condition that several different things can bring on. And while drugs and therapy can heal them, we believe prevention is a better strategy altogeteher. By making a few easy modifications to your food and lifestyle, you can easily avoid acidity problems.
This article was meant to help you avoid acidity problems. Only when you have the right information and the right resources can you be in a position to keep your healthy and diseas-free. In case you ever feel that you are uncertain about your symptoms, feel free to contact the best hospital in Bangalore, Ayu Health Hospital. We are here to for give you super fast diagnoses and unrivalled care for any and all types of emergencies. Get in touch with us on our website to check our treatment facilities