Many people get heartburn often and it is not a healthy condition to live with on a regular basis. If you are one of these people, there are certain foods that relieve heartburn and acid reflux symptoms. It is important to understand that not everyone will experience relief with the same foods, but by understanding the foods that relieve heartburn you can better control your bouts of acid reflux. Knowing which foods can help you can be instrumental in finding a permanent solution.
Acidic foods are the number one reason people suffer from heartburn, and spicy foods are the number one cause. Known culprits include most citrus fruits, alcoholic beverages, and most other high fat foods. Dark green vegetables such as broccoli pose a special problem for those who get frequent heartburn, and spicy drinks can actually make heartburn worse for some people. Those who get heartburn only once a week can use a food diary to determine which foods seem to trigger the worst heartburn reaction.
One study found that lime was beneficial in lowering esophageal sphincter muscle tension and thus lowers the likelihood of heartburn. Another study found that lime juice was able to lower the level of cholesterol in the stomach. Lemon juice also reduced the acid production in the stomach. One study found that spinach reduced the rate of food intake and heartburn during an eleven day stay in a hospital. This is the type of food that seems to prevent heartburn.
The problem with citrus foods and acidity is that they create the feeling of acidity when we eat them. Citrus fruits are typically high in acid, and this leads to the feeling of burning, pain, and discomfort that we know as heartburn. It turns out that the symptoms we feel are actually acid reflux, and not heartburn at all. One study found that a combination of citric fruits and grapefruit juice lowered the severity of heartburn by almost fifty percent.
There are foods that relieve heartburn that are also good for overall health. A research study found that a certain type of kelp reduces the risk of GERD, or gastroesophageal reflux disease. This is because the substance protects the LES, or Lower Esophageal Sphincter. In one study found that fifty percent of participants who regularly took cod-liver oil had a lower incidence of heartburn. The participants also noticed a significant reduction in the reflux symptoms they experienced each time they ate the fish, instead of the other foods that they normally ate.
Citrus foods and acidity seem to go together in another one study found that eating three ounces of tomato juice before bedtime decreased the occurrence of heartburn by nearly twenty percent. There is no need to overindulge with tomatoes because it actually has the opposite effect. In a separate experiment participants who ate three ounces of tomato juice every day for three weeks experienced a decrease in their reflux symptoms. While this sounds like good news, make sure that you get your three ounces from real tomato juice not fake tomato juice, which is loaded with sugar.