Do you experience the feeling of heartburn or chest discomfort? If yes, then you might be suffering from GERD Disease. GERD stands for Gastroesophageal reflux disease. This digestive disorder can be cured with the help of an effective GERD diet. GERD diet helps to reduce the symptoms of acid reflux. We have a list of foods along with some home remedies that will help you avoid GERD. Please note that home remedies may ease the symptoms, but cannot replace medical treatment.
After having a meal, you may feel a burning sensation in your stomach or chest. This is because of the irritation caused by acid backflow into the esophagus. This may further lead to vomiting. This is the widely recognized symptom of GERD disease.
In this article, we will try to provide all the necessary information about GERD and GERD diet. Keep reading to know what to eat and when to eat it.
What Is A GERD Diet?
GERD, or Gastroesophageal reflux disease, is a digestive disorder. It affects the lower esophageal sphincter (LES). The esophagus is the food pipe that transfers food from your mouth to the stomach.
In this disease, the stomach acid continuously flows up into the esophagus and leads to heartburn, chest discomfort and other symptoms. The backflow of acid in the esophagus could be harmful in different ways. It damages the DNA tissues and leads to cancer.
A GERD Diet is a great way to reduce the symptoms of Gastroesophageal reflux disease. GERD diet includes fresh fruits, vegetables, lean protein, oatmeal and so on. To get effective results from a GERD diet, say no to citrus food, chocolate products, and smoking.
What To Eat In A GERD Diet?
Following a GERD diet doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice all your favorite flavors. You just need to make some modifications to your current diet.
If you feel too much acid reflux, you can incorporate the following foods in your diet plan:
- Fruits and Vegetables- Vegetables are low in fat and reduce acid from the stomach. The best options include cucumbers, beans, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach or leafy greens. Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties that reduce heartburn and other gastrointestinal problems. Add non-citrus fruits such as bananas, melons, apples, pears and more to your meals. It will provide relief to the symptoms of acid reflux.
- Oatmeal- Oatmeal is a perfect breakfast option. Because it is loaded with fibre. It absorbs stomach acid and prevents symptoms of acid reflux.
- Lean Proteins- Lean protein is healthy for our bodies and also reduces the symptoms of acid reflux. But, it should be grilled, poached, broiled or baked. Avoid fried or oily meat. You can also incorporate egg whites in your diet.
- Healthy fats- Fat is an essential nutrient for the human body. Replace the saturated fats and trans fats with unsaturated fats from plants or fishes. Some examples are monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fats.
None of the above foods can completely cure your disorder. They can only soothe the symptoms. Your decision to incorporate these foods in your diet should be based on your own experiences with these ingredients.
You should understand that GERD disease requires proper medical attention. It does not get better on its own.
What Not To Eat In GERD?
A well-balanced, proper diet is necessary for a healthy body. In the above section, we have describes what to eat in GERD diet. Now we will explain what NOT to eat to ease the symptoms of GERD.
There is few foods that causes GERD disorders. To prevent yourself from this disease, you should avoid the intake of following food items:
High-Fat Foods: A well-balanced, proper diet is necessary for a healthy body. In the above section, we have describes what to eat in the GERD diet. Now we will explain what NOT to eat to ease the symptoms of GERD.
There are several foods that cause GERD disorders. To prevent yourself from this disease, you should avoid the intake of following food items:
Here is some high-fat food that increases the symptoms of reflux.
- French fries and onion rings
- Full-fat dairy products, such as butter, whole milk, regular cheese, and sour cream
- Fatty or fried cuts of beef, pork, or lamb
- Bacon fat, ham fat, and lard
- Desserts or snacks, such as ice cream and potato chips
- Cream sauces, gravies, and creamy salad dressings
- Oily and greasy foods
Citrus Foods: Every physician advice their patients to increase the intake of fruits and vegetables to overcome numerous diseases. But in the case of GERD, your doctor will strictly advise you to avoid citrus fruits and vegetables.
We have a list of citrus fruits and vegetable that can worsen GERD symptoms. This list contains mostly highly acidic fruits.
- Tomato sauce or foods that use it, such as pizza and chili
Chocolate: Chocolate also enhances the symptoms of GERD. It contains an ingredient called methylxanthine which relaxes the smooth muscle in the LES and increases reflux.
Try to avoid chocolate products and dishes that contain chocolate.
Garlic, onions, and spicy foods: Spicy and tangy foods like garlic and onion cause heartburn symptoms in many people. These food items along with spicy food may increase the symptoms of acid reflux.
Caffeine: You must have noticed that the symptoms of GERD increase after your morning coffee. This is because coffee contains caffeine, and it is a known trigger of acid reflux.
Mint: Mint is also a harmful ingredient which increases the symptoms of GERD. Do not consume mint and mint flavored products such as chewing gum and breath mints.
The above list contains common triggers. Along with these, you should also avoid consuming dairy, flour-based products like bread and crackers, and whey protein.
People may have unique intolerances regarding different foods. You should observe, how these foods are reacting to your body and make your choices accordingly.
Also, Read About: Top 5 Proven Home Remedies For Stomach Infection
Home Remedies For GERD
Most of us have experienced that feeling of burning acid flowing up the throat. But, for a GERD patient, it becomes bothersome and impacts their lifestyle.
Before you visit any pharmacy, look at the natural home remedies we have for you. You can try them to alleviate the unwanted side effects of GERD.
- Chew gum: Chewing gum reduces the acid reflux in the esophagus as it increases saliva production. Therefore, it makes you swallow more. This process reduces the quantity of acid present in the stomach.
- Keep good posture during and after a meal: Try to sit in a sit up posture while eating and avoid lying flat for at least two hours of having a meal. Take a walk after having your meal. It will help gastric juices to flow in the right direction.
- Eating schedule: Do not eat immediately before going to bed. Gastric acids in the stomach increase at the time of digestion. When you lay down, the ability of LES to prevent stomach contents from travelling up decreases.
- Baking Soda: Baking soda neutralizes stomach acid. 1 tablespoon of baking soda in 8 ounces or nearly one glass of water is enough to reduce acidity.
- Eat fruits: Except citrus fruits, you can intake any fruit to reduce the symptoms of GERD. A ripe banana is perfect to reduce the discomfort of acid backwash.
- Ginger: Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties that are helpful for many stomach disorders. You can consume ginger tea for more benefits and flavors. A cup of ginger tea before going to bed is highly beneficial for GERD patients.
GERD Diet and these home remedies tend to reduce the symptoms. But, only your physician can provide you with a permanent solution. You should never depend completely on a GERD diet.
GERD Diet is not proven to prevent GERD disease. But, the edibles included in GERD Diet may ease the symptoms. Research says that fibre intake from fresh fruits and vegetables may reduce the risk of GERD. In the above article, we have described several home remedies for GERD. Consult your healthcare provider for better diagnosis and treatment.
Also, Read About: 5 Common Gastrointestinal Diseases & their Symptoms
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