Today I would like to share a few facts with you about a condition called gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD for short. GERD occurs when the contents of your stomach pass through your lower esophageal sphincter and back into your esophagus. This causes a painful burning sensation that feels like it’s situated behind your breastbone as it moves up to your throat. For this reason, GERD is more commonly known as acid reflux or heartburn.
In the video below, Dustin Moore discusses 5 dietary things to avoid to prevent heartburn.
If you don’t like the video or want more information, continue reading.
Most people only experience GERD occasionally. However, as many as 15 million Americans suffer from it on a daily basis. While there are several factors that play into the development of GERD, there is currently no known cure.
That said, much of the illness can be managed through lifestyle and dietary practices. Why go for drastic treatment methods if all that is required is to limit certain foods in your diet?
With this in mind, below are 5 dietary choices that may be contributing to your GERD related symptoms:
1) Alcoholic beverages
Whether it be a fine wine, beer, or small shots of liquor, alcohol consumption will lower stomach muscle pressure and increase the frequency of GERD symptoms.
2) Caffeinated beverages
Much like alcohol, caffeine makes it easier for stomach contents to move up into your esophagus. The most common culprits are coffee and sodas, although energy drinks can be problematic as well.
3) Fatty foods
While fats are an integral part of your diet, excessive fat may aggravate GERD symptoms. Deep fried items should be limited. This includes foods like french fries, fried chicken, or anything that is full of butter or cream.
4) Spicy foods
Naturally hot items can add a nice kick of flavor to food. But, your stomach will hate you for them! Therefore, I highly recommend you limit these foods since they will only make worsen your symptoms.
5) Mint and peppermint
Much like alcohol, the chemicals behind these flavors weaken the muscles in your stomach. Again, this can lead to an increase in GERD related symptoms.
In addition to these dietary modifications, remember to consume appropriate amounts of food and avoid overeating. You may also find relief from symptoms by staying on your feet two hours after a meal and sleeping with your upper body in a partially elevated position.
If you consistently suffer from GERD symptoms, proper management and limitation of these foods may help you increase your quality of life and find relief. For more information and counseling, speak to your registered dietitian about what will work best for you.