Natural Solutions to IndigestionPosted: Jan 11 in Lifestyle & Behavior by Staff
Indigestion, acid reflux and heartburn in Albany and Macon are huge problems, as they are throughout the rest of the United States. The problem often affects people directly after a meal or when they lay down in an attempt to go to sleep, leading to an uncomfortable burning in the chest, the regurgitation of stomach acid and an overall uncomfortable stomach.
If you only experience the pain of heartburn once in a blue moon then you are among the lucky ones. For millions of Americans this pain is frequent and severe, causing them to consider the consequences of daily actions like eating, sleeping and exercising before going about with their regular business. This group of individuals is classified as having gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. This is a condition marked by chronic heartburn and acid reflux that occurs as a result of a damaged lower esophageal sphincter or LES.
The LES is the valve that separates the stomach from the esophagus, which is the long tube that carries food from the throat to the stomach. When the LES is damaged it is not able to close properly, giving stomach acid the opportunity to backwash into the esophagus when food travels in. This is why acid reflux and heartburn develop so commonly following a meal—especially a large meal that involved a great deal of swallowing, thus putting extra pressure on the LES.
Finding Relief from Heartburn
While medications provide relief for GERD, the only way to cure GERD is with surgery. However, as you are awaiting surgery—or if you are experiencing milder heartburn, then you can try a number of natural remedies to lessen the burden of daily heartburn.
The best natural remedies for alleviating heartburn aren’t “remedies” at all, but instead are simple lifestyle habits that can improve your health and reduce your risk of experiencing acid reflux.
Here are a few ways to reduce heartburn in Macon and Albany:
- Keep meal sizes small to reduce the pressure on the LES
- Eat foods that are low in fat
- Refrain from eating at least three hours before bed to give your meal a chance to digest before you lay down
- Lose weight
- Quit smoking, since tobacco can relax the LES
- Avoid drinking alcohol as this too will relax the LES and make you more susceptible to heartburn
- Don’t eat before exercising
- Avoid your personal trigger foods. These are foods that you have noticed impact you personally by causing acid reflux and heartburn. To learn what your trigger foods are start keeping a food journal and track what you’ve eaten before experiencing heartburn. You may find some surprising trends.
What other lifestyle tips have helped reduce your heartburn? Share your thoughts and experiences in a comment below.