You know the feeling all to well. That burning sensation that clutches your lower chest after you’ve eaten something you could have gone without eating. What commonly follows is a sour or bitter taste; also known as acid reflux, in your mouth or throat that can last from minutes to hours. Not fun!
The discomfort of heartburn is a condition that millions are familiar with; where stomach acid backs up into the esophagus, the valve located at the entrance to your stomach. Normally the esophagus closes as soon as food passes through it. However, if it doesn’t close all the way, or opens too often, acid produced by your stomach can move into the esophageal sphincter.
Some common risks factors of acid reflux disease:
- Eating large meals.
- Lying down right after eating a meal.
- Being obese: excessive body fat.
- Snacking close to bedtime.
- Eating certain foods such as citrus, tomato, chocolate, mint, garlic, onions, spicy or fatty foods.
- Drinking certain beverages such as alcohol, carbonated drinks, coffee, or tea.
- Taking aspirin, ibuprofen, certain muscle relaxers, or blood pressure medications.
Common symptoms of Acid Reflux Disease:
- Heartburn: a burning pain or discomfort that may move from your stomach to your abdomen or chest, or even up into your throat.
- Regurgitation: a sour or bitter-tasting acid backing up into your throat or mouth.
- Bloody or black stools or bloody vomiting.
- Dysphagia – a narrowing of the esophagus, which creates the sensation of food being stuck in your throat.
- Hiccups that don’t let up.
- Weight loss for no reason.
- Wheezing, dry cough, hoarseness, or chronic sore throat.
The good news is heartburn can be managed, or even eliminated with a few small changes in eating, and other life style habits:
- Start by eating smaller meals.
- Finish dinner 3 to 4 hours before bedtime and avoid late night snacks.
- Place blocks on the legs of your bed to raise the head about 6 inches, or sleep with your upper body on a wedge pillow. This techniques uses gravity to keep stomach acid where it belongs.
- Reflux also occurs less frequently when lying on your left side than your right.
- Decrease pressure on the abdomen.
- Eat several small meals a day instead of 3 large ones.
- Eat slowly to allow the enzymes in the mouth to digest food properly.
- Teas with sarsaparilla root & ginger root can help calm the stomach.
- Shake a few drops of oil of clove into a glass of water and sip slowly.
- Consistent exercise.
As mentioned before: a shift in your lifestyle can result in optimum health and longevity, where you may realize the life of your dreams. Be well.