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How to Slash Acid Reflux or GERD

By Sandy Schroeder

Acid reflux or GERD can take a lot of the pleasure out of a meal. If you have it you know all too well what happens. Stomach acid flows the wrong way from the stomach to the throat. The muscles of the lower esophagus do not work correctly causing food and acids to flow back up. You may also have trouble swallowing, a cough, chest pain or sour liquids and bits of food coming up.  If it happens again and again, it is known as GERD, gastroesophageal reflux disease, according to WebMD.

New solutions are always welcome, and this one is especially interesting as it promises a big reduction in symptoms. The study published in the JAMA Internal Medicine journal found people who had GERD at least once a week enjoyed a 40 percent reduction in symptoms.

The researchers pinpointed lifestyle habits that can bring relief from the GERD related burning pain, hoarseness, nausea, sore throat, chest pain and burping.

Here are some of their suggestions.

  • No smoking
  • Brisk walking 30 minutes a day
  • Drinking less than two cups of coffee, tea and or soda daily
  • Maintaining a BMI of 18.4 - 24-9
  • Limiting fats in the diet to 15 to 20 percent of daily calories
  • Moderate use of salt
  • Moderate use of alcohol
  • Including lots of high fiber fruits and veggies in diet

Try these lifestyle changes too

Never go to bed with a full stomach - Eat meals 2 to 3 hours before lying down, allowing time for digestion. Adjust your bed so your head is slightly elevated. 

Do not eat too much - Eat smaller meals or eat four or five smaller meals instead of three big ones. Resist the urge to over eat at holidays or other special occasions.

Try to avoid stress - Solve any ongoing issues and find ways to relax. Slow everything down including your dining pace. Chew your food slowly and pause between bites. Savor each bite and eat less.

Shed a few pounds - If you are overweight, start cutting back.

Keep a diary or journal - Daily logs of the foods that you eat will show the ones that were best tolerated

Tailor your diet as you carefully choose your foods.

Foods to Avoid

  • Chocolate
  • Onions
  • Citrus
  • Red meat
  • Beans

Foods to Include

  • brown rice
  • potatoes
  • lettuce
  • watermelon
  • Olive oil
  • celery

Wherever you are with acid reflux or GERD, see your doctor for help if it does not improve.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Loveland, Tex.

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