First things first, what is acid reflux? The more technical term is GERD or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease. This is where mucous damage exists due to the production of abnormal gastric juice content in the esophagus.
Usual symptoms for acid reflux include heartburn that is persistent, chest pain, morning hoarseness, problems in swallowing, as well as a feeling that there is something stuck in the throat. Bad breath is also caused by GERD or acid reflux as well as cough that is dry.
So now that you know you have them, what should you do to help prevent acid reflux?
First things first, the most common and convenient way to relieve the symptoms that acid reflux bring are through antacids that quickly and effectively do away with the symptoms mentioned. However, a regular habit of eating appropriately and in the appointed time such as not skipping meals, not overeating and avoiding acidic food – help eliminate acid reflux as well.
How should one with acid reflux eat then?
Contrary to popular belief, size does matter. It therefore helps that meals taken are small yet frequent compared to large portioned meals at regular times of the day.
The logic behind this concept works this way. Foods that are taken in little amounts would allow the stomach to also exert little effort in digesting it therefore requiring less secretion of acid during the process of digestion.
So what foods should one eat?
Those that are rich in carbohydrates are advisable to be taken in. Such foods include bread, rice, pasta. These types of meals are all easy in one’s stomach and any excess acid is tied up by them.
What foods should one avoid?
Foods that are high in fat for instance those that one buys in fast food joints should very well be avoided. These types of food usually stay longer in the stomach and takes a lot more acid in order to digest them.
How should one eat?
Try not to forget that over-eating is a big no-no. Eating too many too much actually stimulates the tummy to secret a lot more acid required to digest the items one is taking in. As much as possible, do everything in moderation.
Limit life’s little pleasures
Of course, having acid reflux does not mean that one should totally take out and avoid experiencing life’s pleasures. All that is needed is to limit one’s intake of the following food items if total elimination would prove to be difficult: alcohol, caffeine, chocolate, even tea. It is your choice, either that piping hot coffee or the opportunity to let your stomach make and break acid. Remember that anything put in your stomach affects the way acid is produced in them. This applies to all types of beverage also. Believe it or not, beer everyone’s best friend – actually doubles the acid secreted by the stomach within an hour of its intake.
What should be your position after eating then?
As much as possible, stay upright for an average of forty five minutes after taking a meal. This allows the stomach to do its job the best way it could. However, when acid reflux has set in and you need to lie down, do so with the head elevated about six to eight inches from the bed.
All in all, acid reflux is totally controllable provided you take care of your self, your stomach and your diet.