HEARTBURN / GERD (GASTRO ESOPHAGEAL REFLUX DISEASE)
Heartburn is a painful burning feeling in your chest or throat which occurs when stomach acid backs up into your esophagus. Occasional heartburn is no cause for alarm, however, if it is more frequent and interferes with your daily routine it could be a sign of a more serious condition that may require specific medical care.
Symptoms of heartburn:
🔹A burning pain in the chest. Most often occurs after eating. May occur at night.
🔹Pain worsens when bending over or lying down.
🔹Acidic / bitter taste in the mouth.
Overweight (also pregnancy) increase the risk to develop heartburn and GERD.
How to prevent heartburn
- Portion size – keep your portions small and do not overeat. Overeating regularly puts too much pressure on the muscle / sphincter between esophagus and stomach, the muscle weakens and it causes acid and even food to squeeze through the opening.
- Food variety – the fewer foods to absorb in one meal the less pressure the stomach has on food break down.
- Food type – avoid foods that increase acidity and cause heartburn.
alcohol, caffeine, tobacco, carbonated beverages, spicy foods, raw onions and garlic, cooked tomato sauce, deep fried and high fat meals, chocolate, mint, white flour products.
- Eating late – avoid eating at least 3 hours before going to bed.
- Fiber – fiber increases food digestibility and helps to move it through the stomach. Eat more foods high in fiber. It will aid also in constipation which often comes along with GERD.
- Sleeping – if you suffer from heartburn try to elevate your head / upper body while sleeping.
- Weight loss – significant weight loss with or without bariatric surgery can improve and completely resolve heartburn / GERD symptoms.
- Natural remedies – Ginger, Cumin, Aloe Vera, Fennel, Persil, Turmeric, Chamomile, Milk thistle.
- Medications that neutralise or reduce stomach acid production. Speak to your doctor before starting to take any medication.