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Green smoothies

5 Food Substitutes for GERD Triggers

Going grocery shopping.

Ordering delivery on your lunch break.

Going on a date at a fancy new restaurant.

Getting together with friends for a potluck.

There are countless occasions in our lives in which food is involved. It’s no wonder that when we’re told to rule out certain foods or add in food substitutes to our diets, things can get complicated.

Several decades ago, attempting to eat a certain way might have raised eyebrows or elicited a “come again?” from a waiter.

However, these days, people are becoming more educated on food sensitivities, and it’s easier to adjust their diets to coincide with their bodies’ unique dietary needs.

If you suffer from acid reflux or GERD, you know all too well that certain foods will activate pesky and uncomfortable symptoms such as indigestion and heartburn.

However, rather than lamenting the fact that you can no longer consume your grandmother’s famous tomato sauce, you can choose to be proactive in finding delicious food alternatives that won’t trigger your GERD symptoms.

Here are five food substitutes to replace common GERD triggers.

#1: Instead of White Rice…Try Quinoa.



White rice, among other grains such as wheat and corn, is highly acidic and acid-forming.

On the other hand, grains such as quinoa, amaranth, and wild rice are alkaline-forming, which won’t trigger GERD.

Quinoa also has the benefit of being super high in protein and has twice as much fiber as other grains–a healthy option overall!

The next time you’re selecting a grain for the base in a veggie dish, think twice before grabbing white rice and go for something like quinoa.

#2: Instead of Coffee…Try Ginger Tea.

Ginger Tea


Having a daily cup of joe is a ritual that’s deeply ingrained in many cultures around the world.

If you consider yourself a coffee addict, you may have a hard time giving it up.

However, caffeine tends to relax the esophageal sphincter, allowing acid to flow back up through the esophagus. Dealing with the resulting unease and discomfort in your body is never quite worth it.

If you must satisfy your need to enjoy a warm and cozy beverage in the morning or evening–opt for ginger tea with honey.

In addition to reducing the likelihood of stomach acid flowing up through the esophagus, ginger also reduces inflammation in your gastrointestinal tract.

Sounds like a win-win all around!

#3: Instead of Beef…Try Fish.

pan fried salmon(Source)

When it comes to the consumption of protein-rich foods, your mind may drift to beef or other meat sources.

However, beef and other meats that are high in protein and fat can take longer for your body to digest, which puts pressure on your lower esophageal sphincter for a longer time.

The result? Increased instances of acid reflux.

On the other hand, fish and poultry are both lean proteins and are often recommended for acid reflux sufferers.

That said–everyone’s body is different–so if you notice that fish or poultry still triggers your symptoms, try switching to plant-based proteins such as soy and sprouts.

#4: Instead of Orange Juice…Try a Banana-Kale Smoothie.

Banana and Kale smoothie


Perhaps you have cravings for something sweet in the mornings, and you typically fulfill these cravings with a glass of OJ.

I’m sorry to tell you that due to their high acidity, citrus-based juices are not your friend if you want to minimize GERD symptoms.

Not to worry–there are plenty of other delicious juices and smoothies you can enjoy that aren’t acid-producing in the way citrus fruit juices are.

For example, a banana and kale smoothie is a sweet non-citrus alternative that can help you start your day off on the right foot.

If you want to give it a try, check out this banana and kale smoothie recipe!

#5: Instead of Tomato Sauce…Try Pesto.

Pesto sauce


Tomato sauce may have been your go-to when it came to eating pizza or pasta, but with the high acidity of tomatoes, which often leads to heartburn, I strongly advise you seek alternatives.

Fortunately, there are other sauce options that can be equally tasty–such as pesto.

With the combination of basil, olive oil, pine nuts, and garlic, pesto provides a wonderful aromatic scent in addition to a tasty kick to a range of dishes.

Whether you add it to pasta or pizza or spread it on a sandwich, there are various ways to incorporate pesto in your meals.

Making dietary changes for your health may feel like a burden, but feeling better in your body is always rewarding.

Beyond the foods listed above, probiotics are terrific options for people who suffer from GERD or acid reflux. Here are five probiotic options to add to your shopping cart this week!

Stomach Cancer: One of Many PPI Risks


It’s no secret that proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) carry a number of dangers for your health.

PPI risks range from death to dementia, and you’ll find a number of disturbing studies on PPIs in medical literature.

Despite this fact, doctors throughout America commonly prescribe PPIs to acid reflux sufferers. As NPR reports, the estimated number of Americans taking PPIs is in the millions.

And, the reality is, many PPI users either don’t know—or don’t acknowledge—the possible consequences of popping that daily pill.

If you regularly take PPIs, don’t let this be you.

No matter how severe your GERD is, it’s critical that you understand PPI risks and make informed decisions about your health.

In this article, we’re covering another one of the PPI risks that recently hit the headlines—stomach cancer. But, most importantly, we’ll show you an alternative for your acid reflux challenges.

Adding to the List of PPI Risks—Stomach Cancer

If you have acid reflux, you probably turned to PPIs to minimize your painful symptoms.

But there’s another reason you might have decided to take PPIs, especially if you have chronic GERD—you didn’t want to raise your risk for esophageal cancer.

If avoiding cancer was a motivating factor…

Then you’ll want to read the results of a study from the British Medical Journal Gut, a study that reveals a link between PPIs and gastric cancer risk.

As PubMed Health explains, this study “identified everyone who’d had successful treatment for H. pylori infection in a Hong Kong database, and followed them for an average of 7 years.”

The results?

Researchers reported that they found a correlation between PPIs and stomach cancer risk for patients.

What’s more, PubMed Health explains that this “risk was higher for people taking them [PPIs] long term and daily – an eightfold, or 834%, increase in risk.”

Important Considerations in the Study

  • Like any study, this research involves a number of important considerations and limitations. Before you draw your conclusions, here’s what PubMed Health had to say…
  • The evidence didn’t prove that PPIs cause gastric cancer. (In other words, there’s a link but not causation.)
    The research population was predominantly Chinese, and “Asians are known to have a higher risk of developing stomach cancer than other populations.”
  • H. plylori “is known to raise the risk of stomach cancer.” (However, be sure to take this statement from PubMed Health in consideration with other facts. For instance, the researchers stated their study included H2 blockers—another type of acid reflux medication used to treat H. pylori infections—and found that these didn’t increase gastric cancer risk.)

PPI Risks and Your Health

Despite any caveats the study may include, one fact is clear…

This study casts the safety of PPI medications into doubt.

Even without a causative link, this study makes another case for PPI risks—risks you should seriously consider if you rely on proton pump inhibitors for your GERD.

The good news is, there’s no need to increase your risk for cancer, dementia, heart issues, or other health problems….simply because you don’t have options other than PPIs.

If you’re looking for a solution to your acid reflux problem that helps you avoid taking dangerous medications or placing yourself in danger of PPI risks, try the Cure Your Acid Reflux Program.

Our program helps you address the underlying issues behind your GERD, guiding you step-by-step to heal your gut, improve your symptoms, and—ultimately—get off your PPI medications.

Enroll in the Cure Your Acid Reflux Program today!

What Is Acid Reflux, Anyway?


Acid reflux is one of the most misunderstood ailments by the Western medical community. Thanks to drug company advertising, it’s also a mystery to the average person.

Often, acid reflux is misdiagnosed as something else, so you don’t receive the treatment you need, or you’re told the exact opposite of what’s truly going on in your gut.

To set the record straight, we need to examine acid reflux. Your esophagus has a sphincter, and in order for it to close, your stomach must have enough acid in it to digest food.

When your stomach doesn’t produce enough hydrochloric acid, inflammation and bloating irritate the esophagus and stomach, and the sphincter stays open. You may also hiccup, have nausea right after eating, or feel as if you have food caught in your throat.

When this bloating happens, chyme (the combination of hydrochloric acid and food in your stomach) bubbles up into the esophagus, causing that painful burning in your throat and chest.

Because it burns, we assume the cause is too much acid, but digestive experts have acknowledged that most heartburn and acid reflux come from too little stomach acid. Common causes of acid reflux include the standard American diet, obesity, and acidic foods.

However, if you go to a Western or allopathic physician, you may be told the problem is too much stomach acid, and you’ll typically receive a prescription to reduce the acid in your stomach. Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), such as Nexium and Prilosec, reduce an enzyme that helps produce stomach acid.

The thinking is that less acid equals less heartburn and fewer instances of acid reflux.

Think about that for a moment: acid reflux and heartburn symptoms are caused by too little stomach acid. How can a medication that reduces stomach acid even further possibly help?

It doesn’t.

In fact, it makes acid reflux worse. These are powerful medications, with negative side effects such as constipation and stomach bleeding.

The package insert advises against using these medications for longer than two weeks each year. Patients with acid reflux typically stay on Nexium or Prilosec for years. They have no idea that taking those medications increases their risk of cancers of the digestive system. In addition, less stomach acid means less effective digestion and nutrient absorption.

Traditional acid reflux medications do more harm than good, thanks to a total misunderstanding of what acid reflux is. When you visit a naturopath, the first thing you’ll commonly receive is digestive bitters, which increase the stomach’s acid production. They do the opposite of the proton pump inhibitors.

When you have enough stomach acid, your esophageal sphincter closes, and you have fewer instances of acid reflux.

Most MDs will tell you there is no long-lasting treatment for acid reflux. In fact, you have several natural methods to relieve acid reflux to choose from, such as dietary changes and supplementation. We have researched and tested many natural treatments for acid reflux, and we want to tailor a solution to your lifestyle.

Are you ready to heal your acid reflux symptoms? Contact us today for education, support, and a plan to restore your stomach acid and stop the heartburn and bloating. Relief is just around the corner!

Food Sensitivity and Your Acid Reflux


Food sensitivity plays a large role in your acid reflux, or at the very least, can be ruled out—or identified—by your physician. Some foods may have a subtle effect on you about because not all food allergies are obvious. This is sometimes the case for those with GERD—lifelong food allergies that they remain unaware of. They continue to eat the same food without realizing that it causes acid reflux flare-ups.

Curing your acid reflux starts with identifying what foods may be contributing to your symptoms.

While there are many foods typically associated as GERD triggers—alcohol, raw onions, citrus fruits, tomatoes—these might not be what’s causing your heartburn. A food sensitivity test will identify your problem foods and beverages, rather than force you to give up a ton of foods you love that may not even be responsible for your condition in the first place.

To beat hidden food allergies and combat your acid reflux, we offer 2 different food sensitivity tests that gauge your immunological reaction to a multitude of foods, depending on which test you purchase. There’s a Food Sensitivity Test for 96 foods, and one for 184 foods.

The food sensitivity tests help your physician understand what impacts your body in a negative way, so they can create a treatment plan tailored to your specific needs and symptoms. Often times, removing a problem food is enough to decrease flare ups; but if the damage caused by your GERD is significant, further treatment options may be necessary. Food sensitivity tests are the best place to start when attempting to cure your acid reflux.

If you’re ready to assess your food sensitivity and potential trigger foods, contact us about the Cure Your Acid Reflux Program. Our physician-supervised program evaluates your symptoms and provides a custom approach to your specific needs and issues. We’ll also walk you through how the food sensitivity tests work.

Restoring Balance to Your Digestive System


Restoring balance to your digestive system, in the case of acid reflux, may not be a matter of too much acid, but too little.

When you suffer from acid reflux or heartburn, your body reacts to an imbalance in your digestive system.

The goal of curing your acid reflux is to restore balance to your body. By treating the person, we’re able to remedy the cause of your symptoms. Over-the-counter antacids and other medications only mitigate symptoms.

Proton-pump inhibitors don’t do anything to address the cause of flare ups. Our naturopathic approach utilizes non-invasive techniques to pinpoint the cause of your discomfort and treats it using natural means.

One of the large causes of digestive system imbalance is misinformation. Patients often recite information they’ve been told by doctors, websites, and books—for years—that is outdated or simply wrong.

That’s why our Cure Your Acid Reflux Program puts an emphasis on education. We’ll walk you through not only the treatment plan, but the state of your body and explain what’s happening to it—and why, even after years of visits to the doctor and antacids, you’re still suffering.

We designed our physician-supervised program to address this imbalance in a proactive, natural way. By using dietary supplements, you’re able to relieve discomfort and symptoms caused by bacterial imbalance.

We also have supplements to help support a healthy esophagus and digestive system, or something like our digestive bitters that promote healthy stomach function.

The Cure Your Acid Reflux Program is an individualized approach that doesn’t start and end with supplements, however. WE provide you with a physician-supervised plan, education, food sensitivity testing, and 24/7 support via phone and email.

If you believe your system is suffering from an imbalance, contact us about the Cure Your Acid Reflux Program. Our physician-supervised program evaluates your symptoms and provides a custom approach to your specific needs and issues.

3 Acid Reflux Myths

hot wingsAcid reflux myths. What don’t you know?

Acid reflux sufferers deal with more than just the pain and discomfort of flare-ups—they also struggle with misinformation. The surplus of information out there on GERD and chronic reflux contains its share of acid reflux myths, and we want to help educate you on what might be true, and what might be worth disregarding.

Knowing what info to trust will help you lead a freer, healthier life as you can put the legitimate solutions to practice—and ignore those remedies that might only harm you in the long run.

Drink Less Liquid with Your Meals to Reduce the Likelihood of Flare-ups: True

Staying hydrated between meals is far better for your body than overindulging in liquids while you eat.

When you drink too much during a meal, you’ll only dilute the acid in your stomach, which leads to discomfort, bloating, and belching. Using a smaller glass and drinking less will also decrease the likelihood of increasing the pH of your stomach juices—something that causes trouble for your esophageal sphincter.

Give Up Hot or Spicy Foods If You Have Acid Reflux: False

The outcry against spicy foods when it comes to acid reflux is noticeable. They say when acid reflux is a problem, spicy food is the first thing that should go, but the evidence against your favorite hot sauce or Mexican dish is underwhelming.

Although spicy foods can trigger heartburn, there’s no hard proof that giving them up will improve or cure your acid reflux. Eating spicy foods in moderation and making other lifestyle changes can be much more effective in the long run when managing your acid reflux.

Medication Is the Only Way to Treat Acid Reflux Successfully: False

Many people who suffer from acid reflux commit themselves to antacids and other drugs to mitigate and fight heartburn. When they find temporary relief, they depend on those medications for long-term relief as well, but they may risk long-term side effects instead.

Natural remedies such as lifestyle changes, massage, and meditation have proven themselves capable of eliminating flare-ups and even acid reflux altogether.

Natural remedies promote a healthier life by considering the bigger picture. Depending on over-the-counter antacids or prescription proton pump inhibitors won’t do anything to change what triggers your acid reflux, or address the behavior that leads to it.

Part of how we treat acid reflux is through education and support. We want to help you understand what might be causing your acid reflux so you can eliminate triggers or change behaviors that may be provoking flare-ups. Food sensitivity tests and one-on-one consultations provide the kind of support structure designed to treat the symptoms of acid reflux and the condition itself.

Manage Stress to Reduce Your Acid Reflux

yogaBattling stress is one of the leading causes of acid reflux flare-ups.

When you let stress overwhelm you and take over your life, your body reacts appropriately—and so does your acid reflux. Stress, anxiety, and even fear sometimes cause an abundance of stomach acid.

When you suffer from GERD or typical acid reflux due to other health factors, adding stress to the mix only makes the pain more severe.

Stress may not be the sole cause of your acid reflux, but learning how to manage your stress will help reduce the likelihood of flare-ups.

We care about your health and want to make the journey toward beating your acid reflux a reality. Here are 3 natural ways to deal with hectic living to minimize the impact stress has on your acid reflux.


Finding your center. Attaining a state of calm. Meditation brings you back to a mindset where stress melts away.

Meditation relaxes you physically, mentally, and emotionally—and when your body is relaxed, flare-ups occur less often. Meditation is something you can do at home or during a 5-minute break at work. All you need is quiet and a space to relax in.


If you enjoy relaxing in silence, then try massage therapy.

Massage therapy isn’t just for backaches and relaxation anymore—it’s also great for adjusting your mood and behavior. Massages help correct symptoms of stress, such as angry outbursts, restlessness, and anxiety. The wonderful thing about massages is that they target specific areas of the body, and there are multiple techniques a therapist could apply.

Hot stone massages, Swedish massage, and aromatherapy massage are all viable options, and each one offers something different.

Lifestyle Changes

For a solution closer to home, consider making some changes in your life. Look at your schedule to understand what might be triggering your stress. Identifying what makes you anxious or worried can lead to relief, so it’s important to decide what activities you can change or do without.

Leaving a stressful job will go a long way toward curbing negative feelings and anxiety.

If you’ve found ways to manage your stress and you’re still suffering from acid reflux flare-ups and GERD, contact us about the Cure Your Acid Reflux Program. Our physician-supervised program evaluates your symptoms and provides a custom approach to your specific needs and issues.