Tag Archives: food choices

The Best Vitamins for Acid Reflux Sufferers

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If you haven’t already explored which vitamins for acid reflux to include in your healing efforts, there’s no time like the present.

Upon receiving a diagnosis for acid reflux, perhaps you’ve made some basic changes to your lifestyle, such as…

  • Avoiding trigger foods.
  • Sleeping in an elevated position.
  • Leaving enough time between eating dinner and sleeping (at least three hours, in case you were wondering!).
  • Wearing loose clothing to relieve pressure on your abdomen.

However, perhaps you haven’t considered how improving your nutrition can support your journey toward a life free of acid reflux or GERD symptoms.

That’s why it’s important to learn about the various foods and their vitamins that serve as excellent healing solutions for acid reflux sufferers.

It’s important to note that eating foods rich in certain vitamins should be the only method you use to achieve the benefits they provide.

When consumed as a pill vitamin, these vitamins can often do more harm than good.

Many people end up taking too high of a dose, and according to Mayo Clinic, “Dietary supplements aren’t intended to be a food substitute because they can’t replicate all of the nutrients and benefits of whole foods.”

Wondering which nutrients to intentionally include in your diet and daily routine? Read on to discover a list of helpful vitamins for acid reflux…

Vitamin B-12, Vitamin B-6, and Folic Acid

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When it comes to vitamins for acid reflux, you can’t underestimate the power of a certain group of B vitamins.

A 2006 study published in the Journal of Pineal Research found that vitamin B-12, vitamin B-6, and folic acid (also a B vitamin) can be used to decrease acid reflux symptoms.

In the study, one group of acid reflux patients took a supplement containing vitamins B-12, B-6, and folic acid.

100% of the participants in this group reported a decrease in symptoms after 40 days of treatment.

Another group of subjects took omeprazole, an over-the-counter treatment for acid reflux. Only 65.7% of the participants in this second group experienced a decrease in symptoms.

With results like that, it’s hard to deny that it would be wise to up your intake of B vitamins.

When it comes to knowing which foods contain B vitamins…

  • Vitamin B-6 is in foods such as meat, poultry, beans, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.
  • Vitamin B-12 is in animal-based foods such as poultry, fish, eggs, red meat, and dairy.
  • Folic Acid, also called folate, is in beans and green leafy vegetables. Additionally, whole grain breads and cereals may also be fortified with this essential vitamin.

Vitamins A, C, and E

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Antioxidants, such as vitamins A, C, and E, work to protect our bodies from free radical damage.

This is particularly important for acid reflux sufferers because free radicals cause illness and infection that may worsen or trigger acid reflux symptoms.

According to a 2012 study, eating foods rich in these antioxidant vitamins will help relieve your symptoms and generally improve your digestive health.

You may be wondering which foods contain these vitamins.

  • Vitamin A is in squash, carrots, spinach, liver, and eggs.
  • Vitamin C is in broccoli, watermelon, cantaloupe, papaya, honeydew, and mango—all of which have low acidic content. Remember that foods with high acidity, such as oranges and lemons, aren’t the best if you want to avoid heartburn.
  • Vitamin E is in foods such as spinach, olive oil, avocado, nuts, and nut butter.

Whether you’re whipping up a salad with avocado and olive oil or blending a spinach and nut butter smoothie, there are many ways to include vitamin E in your diet.
From vitamin B-12 to vitamin E, make a list of the nutrients we’ve listed in this post, and keep these in mind the next time you go shopping at the grocery store, or farmers market. It’s a great way to complement other ways of naturally minimizing your symptoms.

Lastly–remember that you should be consuming vitamins via the foods you eat–not from taking them in supplement form.

Having a hard time staying away from triggers such as coffee, beef, and tomatoes? Click here to learn about five delicious foods you can substitute for GERD trigger foods!

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.

quinoa

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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

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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.

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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

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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

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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!

Acid Reflux Treatment: What’s Stress Got to Do with It?

stressed girlThere’s more to acid reflux than meets the eye…er, your gut. Food is commonly cited as the culprit for intense heartburn, GERD, and other symptoms / consequences of acid reflux—but what about stress?

Let’s look at what stress can do to us.

Being stressed out can lead to…

  • Overeating.
  • Distracting yourself with food.
  • Eating the wrong kinds of food.
  • Becoming an unconscious eater.

Okay, so food still plays a big part in acid reflux, but you see what we’re getting at: being stressed or letting the pressures of life bring you down can lead to unhealthy habits, which in turn triggers acid reflux flare-ups.

It makes sense that if you cut stress out of your life, you might also be kicking your acid reflux to the curb.

Now, say you already suffer from acid reflux. That in itself can be a stressful experience. Sudden flare-ups. Uncertainty about whether that next bite of food is going to help or exacerbate your problem… Suffering from GERD feels hopeless at times, but the important thing is to know that you are not alone, and you can implement natural acid reflux treatments to keep it from ruling your life.

And what’s more natural than moving to a place where stress bears no weight in your day-to-day life?

Managing the stress associated with acid reflux is doable, even from the comfort of your own home. Meditation is a great way to reduce the stress you experience, with life or with your acid reflux. Simply by reaching a calmer state of mind, you could find your center amidst unwanted flare-ups.

Whether you’re dealing with the emotional turmoil of suffering from acid reflux, or you think stress is what’s causing that chronic heartburn, we’re here to help. Contact us to speak with a naturopath who cares, and start living a happier, stress-free life.

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Natural Approach: The Safe, Effective Treatment for Acid Reflux

woman touching her throatMany GERD sufferers use over-the-counter medications as their first step for ridding themselves of that uncomfortable, burning sensation, but there’s a catch: OTC medicines are designed to mask symptoms but not actually treat them.

And that means people pay money to ignore the problem—and not to rid themselves of acid reflux.

In contrast, a natural approach to treating GERD offers a safer and more effective treatment than reliance on over-the-counter medications that only mask the symptoms of acid reflux.

In fact, the benefits of taking a more natural approach will not only save you money—it can also lead to positive changes which can lead to an overall healthier life.

It’s estimated that nearly 20% of the U.S. population suffers from symptoms of acid reflux, so how the affliction is treated is worth considering in your day-to-day life.

Going all natural to treat acid reflux.

Lifestyle changes such as losing weight and eating specific healthy foods like raw almonds or Red Delicious apples have been shown to help treat the symptoms of acid reflux. Following holistic remedies can address the whole individual rather than just the acid reflux, leading to a healthier lifestyle.

Naturopathic solutions generally focus on restoring your body’s balance through education and supplemental products. The Cure Your Acid Reflux Program, for example, is a physician-supervised program that evaluates and tests your body in order to develop a targeted, custom-treatment plan for your acid reflux.

The goal of the program is to correct and restore balance while promoting healthy functionality. It’s not trying to cover up symptoms or sweep them under the rug like most OTC medicines.

Part of restoring balance to your digestive system, stomach and esophagus is eating the right foods. Food Sensitivity testing is a great way to make those changes in your lifestyle and diet easier by telling you which foods your body doesn’t agree with.

The comprehensive blood test is used to measure your immunological reaction to specific foods, targeting those that could be the cause of your acid reflux.

Once you know which foods are instigating your reflux or other health issues, you can take a proactive step toward actually treating them. There’s nothing more natural than changing the way you eat for the better!

You can enjoy a healthier lifestyle and free yourself from the pain of acid reflux by finding a solution that is custom fitted to your needs. Understanding what foods your body may be sensitive to, or addressing the actual problem of imbalances in your body, is a proactive and natural path to treatment of acid reflux.

tea

7 Herbs that Soothe Acid Reflux Symptoms

teaHerbal remedies can be used as handy DIY treatments for a number of ailments, particularly acid reflux.

Nutritional research indicates that herbal intake enables aids in the process of riding your body of acid reflux, heartburn, and indigestion.

Consider some the following herbal remedies the next time you feel a bout of acid reflux coming on—or to keep it at bay.

  1. Slippery Elm is an herb used to commonly treat sore throat, cough, and digestive disorders, which is useful those suffering from acid reflux. Slippery Elm contains a mucilage, which is a thick, gluey substance derived from most plants (aloe vera being particularly rich with mucilage, for example). This herb can be taken as a tea, capsule, or tincture for treating symptoms of GERD.
  2. Ginger Root has been used the world over for hundreds of years as an ideal herbal remedy for treating nausea, which is a common symptom of GERD. Ginger root can be taken as a liquid extract, in tablet form, or as a powder and used to make tea.
  3. Apple Cider Vinegar, specifically the unrefined variety containing “the mother”, is a very common herbal remedy used to reduce the symptoms of acid reflux. Taking a few teaspoons in a large glass of water can help aid in digestion.
  4. Chamomile, when taken as a tea, helps to sooth the lining of the esophagus because it contains a mucilage. Chamomile tea has shown to be effective in reducing the activity of pepsin in the gastrointestinal tract to create a protective coating against stomach acid.
  5. Marshmallow Root can be taken in capsule form or as a cold infusion—steeped in water overnight. The thick, slightly bitter, sweet-tasting, and soothing drink helps to coat the esophagus and stomach lining. And because it contains a mucilage, marshmallow can be used to heal damage caused by excessive acid production—a symptom many with acid reflux experience struggle with.
  6. Turmeric can be added to warm water and gargled to help alleviate heartburn—a symptom associated with GERD sufferers. It is also helpful for when you have a sore throat or sores in your mouth. Turmeric, like most herbs, can be taken in capsule form as well.
  7. Chewable Licorice—the form of licorice that has had the glycyrrhizin removed—is what you should aim for. Otherwise it can be responsible for water retention or an increase in blood pressure. Chewing this herb at the onset of heartburn aids in reducing stomach inflammation, protects the stomach lining, and helps to soothe ulcer conditions. It also promotes enzyme production which further aids in efficient digestion.

Herbal remedies are a great, natural way to treat acid reflux symptoms; but as always, they are best taken in moderation. Do a little research into the different herbs and herbal remedies to see which might be best for you, based on your symptoms and existing health concerns.

Some herbs could exasperate existing conditions if not taken correctly, or simply may not be safe depending on your current health. Seeing a naturopathic doctor is a safe way to explore some of these amazing at-home remedies.