There are a number of ways to find heartburn relief. Heartburn affects most people from time to time, and some people a lot. It can be brought on by eating too much or too quickly, by eating certain foods, by stress or anxiety, or by a chronic illness such as reflux or ulcers.
There are three main lines of heartburn remedies:
- Natural remedies
- Lifestyle changes
Before we go any further, however, you need to be aware that regularly recurring heartburn is not normal. It is, in fact, an indication that you are suffering from a condition that makes you particularly susceptible to heartburn. Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) is the most likely cause of your heartburn if it occurs more than once or twice a week. If this is the case you need to visit your doctor. Not only will they be able to treat your recurring discomfort, but frequent heartburn can lead to other more serious and long-term problems such as ulcers and cancer.
Heartburn medications fall into some simple categories – treatment and prevention. Zantac is used to prevent heartburn, whereas antacids are usually taken to reduce the burning sensation once it has started. Before you make regular use of any medications you should consult your doctor.
Heartburn Natural Remedies
There is some evidence that certain herbal remedies can be useful in treating heartburn and indigestion. There hasn’t been much research in this area, though. One product that has been studied and is found to reduce acid reflux, stomach pain, cramps and nausea is called Iberogast. This is an herbal concoction made up of a number of common herbs.
A number of studies have shown that melatonin helps to protect the digestive tract. One dietary supplement containing melatonin along with I-tryptophan, B6 and B12 vitamins and folic acid was highly effective in relieving symptoms of GERD.
Milk can provide a temporary relief by buffering the stomach. Skim milk works best since the fat in non-skim milk can stimulate the stomach to produce more acid.
Gum chewing is an effective means of reducing stomach acid, believe it or not. This is because gum chewing increases saliva production, an acid buffer. Also, when you chew gum you swallow more, which pushes the acids back out of the esophagus and into the stomach.
Lifestyle Changes for Curing Heartburn
Certain bad habits at home can contribute to the onset of heartburn, so fixing some of these habit and replacing them with good habits can go a long way towards ending this troublesome pain altogether.
Certain foods, such as peppermint, caffeine, sodas, chocolate, acidic foods and high-fat foods all stimulate the production of acid and often result in at least some indigestion. On the other hand, foods that are high in fiber will keep the digestive process moving along, which will reduce acid reflux.
Avoid filling up your stomach with large meals. Instead, eat several smaller meals and snacks throughout the day. Likewise, take smaller bites when you eat, and chew the food slowly and more thoroughly.
Don’t eat too soon before bed. You should cease all eating at least two hours before bedtime. Not only will this give you heartburn relief, but it will also help you to sleep better at night.
Losing weight, quitting smoking, reducing caffeine intake and alcohol consumption – all of these changes will help reduce the incidence of heartburn.
Wear looser pants and a looser belt. The pressure tight jeans place on the abdomen contribute to heartburn.
Many people suffer regularly from indigestion and acid reflux. Thankfully there are a number of ways we can find heartburn relief that are natural and fairly simple to apply.