How to Treat Acid Reflux Naturally
Hyperacidity, as known as acid reflux or heartburn, is the irritation of the esophagus that results when acid from the stomach is released into the esophagus. This occurs because of a dysfunction in a muscular valve, known as the lower esophageal sphincter (LES), which normally keeps stomach acid in the stomach. The LES may open too often or it may not close tightly enough, allowing stomach acid to leak through. Acid reflux isn’t a serious medical problem unless it becomes constant and chronic, in which case it becomes GastroEsophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) and requires treatment. If you follow a few simple steps, you can diagnose acid reflux and learn to treat it naturally.
01 Using Lifestyle Modifications for Acid Reflux
You can change the types and amounts of foods you eat in order to make your acid reflux better. Decrease the amount of food you eat at any one time. This reduces the stress pressure on your stomach. Don’t eat for 2-3 hours before bedtime in order to reduce the risk of food putting pressure on the LES as you try to sleep.
- Try to eat slowly because it allows the food to be digested more easily and quickly, leaving less food in the stomach adding pressure on the LES.
You need to figure out exactly what kinds of food trigger your acid reflux. Start keeping track of foods and beverages you eat and note any that cause you any problems. Use a common triggers list to begin with and add any foods or beverages that you know you are sensitive to. If any food you eat bothers you an hour later, you should eliminate that food from your diet.
- For example, if you eat spaghetti and meatballs with tomato sauce for dinner and experience acid reflux within an hour, your trigger could be the spaghetti, the meatballs, or the tomato sauce. Next time, eliminate the tomato sauce. If you have no hyperacidity, you know that the tomato sauce is the trigger. If you still do, it could be the pasta or the meatballs. Next day, have some leftover pasta alone with no meatballs and no sauce. If you have hyperacidity, the pasta should be eliminated from your diet.
There are certain things you can change in your everyday habits that can help with your acid reflux as well. Wear clothing that doesn’t constrict your stomach or abdomen. This causes unnecessary pressure on your stomach, which can cause acid reflux. You should also stop smoking because it increases the amount of acid in your stomach.
- Try to lose weight, especially if you are severely overweight or obese. This will help reduce pressure on the LES and relieve your acid reflux.
Some people have bad acid reflux overnight. If you have this problem, raise the entire head of the bed to allow gravity to help keep the acid in your stomach. This way, the acid will not creep into your esophagus overnight and cause you problems.
- Piling up pillows won’t really help much as these tend to bend your neck and body in such a way that it actually increases the pressure and makes the hyperacidity worse.