Millions of people all around the world are affected by Acid reflux every year. There are many different causes of acid reflux, but through diet, lifestyle changes and sometimes medication the symptoms may be managed. Acid reflux can be potentially dangerous if left untreated. Not only is it painful, it can be hazardous if the stomach contents are aspirated into the lungs. Acid reflux can also be harmful to the esophageal lining, causing irritation, pain and damage.
Chronic acid reflux sufferers may have several different things that produce acid reflux and heartburn. The objects that contribute the most to acid reflux are: tea, coffee, other drinks containing caffeine, chocolate, tomatoes, fried and fatty foods, alcohol, tobacco, large meals, eating before bedtime or late night eating, citrus fruits and juices and wearing tight clothes.
Foods that should be eaten rarely to avoid acid reflux are fruit juices, berries, garlic, onions, leeks, sauerkraut, scallions, ground beef, chicken salad, eggs, hot dogs, ham, milk, cheese, granola, alcohol, cola and fattening or fried foods.
Alcohol has adverse effects on acid reflux sufferers. Alcohol increases the production of stomach acid and relaxes the lower esophageal sphincter, allowing stomach contents to reflux into the esophagus. Alcohol can also lead to stomach ulcers, which hinder healing of the esophagus or stomach.
Avoid alcohol as much as possible, but it can be consumed in moderation once in a while. To lessen alcohol's effect on the stomach and esophagus, you should dilute any beverages with club soda or water, have only 1-2 drinks and drink white wine instead of red.
Stress may also cause acid reflux. Everyone has stress in their lives, but it must be managed in order to lead a healthy life without acid reflux. Stress isn't a direct cause of heartburn, but can lead to behaviors that cause acid reflux.
Regular exercise not only helps to relieve everyday stress, it also helps acid reflux symptoms. Exercise releases endorphins, which make the acid reflux sufferer feel better and also aid with digestion. Heartburn may be a problem during exercise. If so, you should discuss this with your doctor. Avoid jarring type exercises and do less jarring exercises like bike riding, swimming or walking. An antacid may also be taken before exercise to bring relief.
Seven to eight hours of sleep a night is a must to keep stress levels down. Various studies have shown that sleep-deprived people have higher levels of stress.
Another stress-reliever is to take a quick mental rest. Visualize a relaxing place in your mind. A favorite vacation spot or somewhere you would like to go to one day; anywhere that relaxes you to think about it. Imagine seeing the place, smelling scents and hearing sounds. This visualization technique will help you to relax.
Balanced, low-fat meals also help with acid reflux. Avoid foods that cause acid reflux, but eat plenty of vegetables, fruits and fish. Drink plenty of water also, as it rids the body of toxins.
Smoking is another factor that worsens acid reflux symptoms. Smoke reduces the production of saliva. Saliva helps to defend damage to the esophagus by acid reflux. Smoking also stimulates the production of stomach acid, which could worsen the effects of acid reflux and weaken the lower esophageal sphincter. The LES is the valve at the junction between the stomach and esophagus. Smoking causes decreased gastric motility while smoking, which can cause less efficient digestion because the stomach takes longer to empty.
There are many factors to acid reflux, but with some of the previous suggestions, it can be managed. At first, consult your Physician; in addition to diet and exercise, medication is a must.