Acid reflux may not be dangerously life-threatening, but it is most certainly one of the most discomforting diseases. About 20% of the American population suffers from GERD daily. With these high statistics, it is safe to assume that local people and science have developed several treatments and remedies.
This article discusses home remedies for heartburn and 20 fast ways to get rid of acid reflux. Keep reading to find out.
Home Remedies For Heartburn: 20 Fast Ways To Get Rid Of Acid Reflux
1. Chewing Gum
No doubt chewing gum is used for its mouth-freshening effects and contributes to good oral health, which is one of the main reasons it’s so popular. However, research has proven that chewing gum can also be used as a natural remedy to get rid of acid reflux.
Gum invigorates your salivary glands by providing mechanical and gustatory stimuli, increasing saliva production in your mouth.
If you eat chewing gum after a large meal, large amounts of saliva will build up and effectively wash down the acids before they even arise in your esophagus. This will reduce acid levels in your esophagus, preventing several discomforting symptoms. Furthermore, consistent chewing will make your saliva more alkaline, so when you swallow it, the esophagus will be soothed, and stomach acids will neutralize.
The type of gum you choose plays a huge part in this. Most studies recommend sugar-free gum for GERD patients, while others suggest ginger or cinnamon flavored. It is safe to assume that except for mint gums, others are harmless, and they will reduce symptoms such as the burning sensation and sour taste.
2. Baking Soda
Sodium bicarbonate, commonly known as baking soda, is a chemical compound in almost every kitchen. This home remedy can come in handy when it’s late at night or an inconvenient time to seek other options.
Suppose you have an acid reflux flare-up in the middle of the night, and antacids are not accessible. At that time, a teaspoon of baking soda added to tea or warm water will provide immediate relief from acid reflux symptoms. Baking soda is an effective and harmless home remedy used traditionally for years. This remedy works because sodium bicarbonate has a pH of 8.3, making it alkaline. Its properties neutralize the acidity in your stomach and reduce the risk of acid reflux.
It is important to remember that baking soda is a short-term solution that is most certainly not recommended for chronic acid reflux (gastroesophageal reflux disease). It will temporarily relieve the symptoms but won’t cure the disease.
After eating a large meal, stir baking soda in a glass of moderately warm water and sip it slowly to avoid acid reflux symptoms.
Cautions to remember:
- Sodium can cause fluids to build up in your body which is why this remedy is not recommended for pregnant women
- Excess baking soda can cause diarrhea and vomiting
- Taking baking soda on an empty stomach is recommended, but it’s unnecessary.
3. Aloe Vera Juice
Aloe vera is a plant species rich in health properties and is a main ingredient in several cosmetic home remedies. Luckily for you, Its soothing benefits can be enjoyed in the form of “juice” as well.
Aloe vera has anti-inflammatory properties, and research suggests that these properties can act as an agent to settle your inflammatory symptoms.
Aloe vera juice is alkaline, which will help balance your body’s ph levels and digestive issues. Making this juice a regular part of your diet will also soothe your acid-infected stomach lining and intestines. Furthermore, aloe vera contains lectins that inhibit acid secretion and thus reduce the risk of GERD.
Remember that you should only drink decolorized aloe vera juice; otherwise, adverse effects can occur. It is also suggested to consume small quantities at a time to avoid stomach pain.
Here’s how you can make aloe vera juice at home:
- Cut an aloe vera leaf in half and remove the skin
- Rinse the gel to remove bitterness
- Put the gel and water in your blender
- Blend until a juice-like substance forms
- Add gerd-friendly fruit juice to make it more palatable
- Pour and enjoy your drink
Ginger has been known as a traditional heartburn remedy for a long time.
If you have acid reflux, several people would have suggested having a cup of ginger tea after eating your meals. Ever wondered about the scientific reason behind it?
Ginger is rich in chemicals such as phenolic compounds that are known to aid gastrointestinal functions and decrease gastric contractions. This means fewer acids will flow into the esophagus through your stomach, and the frequency of symptoms will decrease.
Other than that, this spice-like vegetable has intense anti-inflammatory properties that can help with pain symptoms. Ginger also accelerates the digestive process, normalizes the flow of digestive juices in the GI tract, absorbs excess stomach acids, and tightens the lower esophageal sphincter.
This is useful because less acid will be allowed to leak into your food pipe when LES’s functions are restored. All these functions make ginger a beneficial and productive natural solution. Make sure to take ginger in moderation and remember that it is not a permanent solution but a temporary home remedy.
Fact: Lower esophageal sphincter is the ring of muscle that connects your esophagus and stomach
Ways you can include ginger in your diet:
- Add fresh ginger root to your soup and smoothies
- Drink ginger tea once or twice a day
- Grate it into sauces, salad dressing, and condiments
5. Apple Cider Vinegar
A common misconception is that acid reflux only happens because of excess stomach acids, but that is not true. In some cases, a lack of stomach acids can also be the root cause of terrible symptoms. This specific home remedy is for people whose acid reflux is caused by the latter.
Low stomach acids hinder your system from digesting nutrients properly and make your body prone to infections. Apple cider vinegar will introduce more acids into your digestive tract, and its antibacterial properties will be helpful for your system. It has natural probiotics and antioxidants that will significantly aid your health.
Add a spoonful of apple cider vinegar to a glass of water and drink the solution before and after meals to treat acid reflux. Add honey or cinnamon to the answer if you are not a fan of its sour vinegary taste.
With little to no scientific evidence, this remedy is still considered contentious.
6. Chewing Fennel Seeds
Fennel seeds are a well-liked spice directly harvested from herb fennel plants, and even though they are mostly known for their sweet licorice flavor, they are suitable for digestive health.
They are suitable for acid reflux because of their essential nature and antibacterial properties, but anethole is the main component that makes them beneficial for patients. It is a soothing agent, relaxes the stomach walls, and kills harmful bacteria.
Fennel seeds are also extremely rich in fiber, which means they are a protein-packed source of dietary fiber in your diet that will most certainly provide significant advantages to your digestive health.
If your acid reflux has led to inflammation of intestinal walls, then fennel seeds are a good remedy for you. They will relax the intestinal walls, reduce burning pain, and solve your indigestion problems.
It is common in many places to snack on sugar-coated fennel seeds after a large meal. That is because they neutralize the acidity in your stomach and reduce the chances of getting an acid flare-up later.
Here’s how you can use them
- Use roasted fennel seeds as a topping.
- Add crushed fennel seeds to your tea, smoothie, or soup
- Chew on sugar-coated fennel seeds directly
- Start your morning with fennel seed water. You can make it by following the method below.
- Add 1-2 teaspoons of fennel seeds in 200ml of water
- Stir it properly
- Let it soak overnight (it works best when it is lukewarm)
- Drink it on an empty stomach on the following morning
7. Avoiding Certain Foods
Certain foods influence and trigger your acid reflux more than you realize. Several factors contribute to acid reflux but considering that food is the one thing that retrospectively affects your digestive system, it is understandable that it plays a significant part.
By avoiding certain foods and getting on an acid-reflux-friendly diet, you can reduce your symptoms to a great extent.
Foods To Avoid With Acid Reflux
|What to avoid||Why avoid it|
|Fried and fatty foods||These foods prolong the digestion process and increase the likeliness of acid reflux.|
|Spicy foods||Spicy foods contain a harmful chemical named capsaicin that can irritate your esophageal lining.|
|Dairy products||Dairy products aggravate your symptoms by numbing the lower esophageal sphincter.|
|Citrus fruits||A high amount of citrus juice promotes acid production in your body and increases stomach acid levels.|
|Acidic foods||They tend to irritate your esophageal lining and aggravate other symptoms as well.|
8. Eating Smaller Meals
As mentioned above, food plays a significant role in your acid reflux, and if you wish to fix your dietary behavior, then amending the quality of your food intake will not be enough.
If you eat large meals and more significant portions, your acid reflux will be triggered despite the harmless nature of the food you eat. That’s because large meals initiate stomach expansion and hinder the lower esophageal’s ability to close properly.
If it malfunctions and does not close tightly after a meal, stomach acids will eventually leak back into your esophagus.
Furthermore, an acid reflux system is much more sensitive than a regular one, and when you eat significant portions all at once, it becomes harder for your system to digest them. When the stomach contents remain unprocessed, they add to your stomach acids and increase the risk of acid reflux.
Understandably, they also cause a lack of space in the stomach and force acids to flow into your esophagus. Often they even catch bacteria and increase the toxicity of stomach acids.
By eating smaller meals, you’ll be able to solve indigestion problems, and your lower esophageal sphincter will be spared from unnecessary pressure.
9. Elevating The Head of Your Bed
This home remedy is for those unfortunate events when your GERD and acid reflux occur at nighttime. It is common knowledge that acid reflux at night is much more discomforting and severe than during the daytime. It leaves you restless and tired the following day, and even though several factors trigger acid reflux at night, your sleeping position is the main one.
You can get rid of acid reflux at night by elevating the head of your bed. “elevating the head” means sleeping in a position where your body is upright, and the director is raised. It is commonly suggested to elevate the head of your bed by 6-9 inches.
This remedy helps with acid reflux because your esophagus is set over your stomach so that gravity won’t allow acids to leak into your food pipe.
Here’s how you can elevate the head of your bed
- Get an adjustable bed and use its mechanical functions to elevate your body up and down with just a click
- Put a wedge pillow between the bed’s frame and your mattress.
- Place plastic or wooden bed risers beneath the head of your bed
10. Wearing Loose-fitting Clothing
Several acid reflux sufferers have observed that the likeliness and intensity of reflux tend to be higher when they wear tight clothes. That’s because elastic waistbands and tightly fitted clothing put additional pressure on your body’s midsection and encourage stomach acids to leak outward.
It may seem like your compressing pants, or tight belt only puts pressure on the outer stomach, but that’s not the case. They can push the acids within your gut to escape through the lower esophageal sphincter and cause discomfort.
Clothes constricting around the waist are your worst enemy as long as this disease remains untreated. That is precisely why you should lean toward wearing loose-fitting clothing that is stretchable and comfortable.
This suggestion/ remedy isn’t just limited to nighttime. It is highly suggested to wear loose clothing during the day as well.
Mustard is a condiment mostly known for its zesty taste and excellent health properties. It has been an ingredient in home remedies for centuries; luckily, it helps with acid reflux.
Mustard is rich in minerals such as calcium, zinc, phosphorus, magnesium, and omega-3 fatty acids, making it highly beneficial.
The vinegar content in mustard reduces acid production in your body, and its fiber count aids the digestive process. Furthermore, mustard’s soothing anti-inflammatory properties make it a perfect home remedy for heartburn.
Ways you can take mustard:
- Put it in your meals to add flavor
- Add mustard powder to low-fat milk
- Mustard, honey, and warm water
- Use the mustard sauce as an alternative to dairy ranch
- Eat a spoonful of raw mustard directly
This is a controversial home remedy with indefinite results. Milk is rich in calcium and protein, which are extremely helpful for acid reflux, but it’s dairy and fat content can put pressure on your system and aggravate terrible symptoms.
Rather than drinking high-fat milk and risking your health, there is a better alternative for acid reflux patients. Low-fat or skim milk is an effective home remedy to eliminate heartburn instantly.
It contains the same amount of calcium while the fat content is low. Nonfat milk is mainly recommended because it will stimulate the gastric secretion and temporarily buffer stomach acids from the sensitive lining of your stomach. This will alleviate your painful symptoms almost immediately and provide significant relief. Moreover, calcium is considered a natural antacid, so its beneficial properties will also aid your system.
Try the options listed below.
- Almond milk has alkalizing properties.
- Soy milk is dairy-free with essentially zero fat content
- Skimmed milk has high calcium and protein content
- Coconut milk contains electrolytes that will promote a healthy ph balance
Caution: even with these precautionary alternatives drink milk in moderation.
13. Herbal Tea
Making herbal tea a regular part of your diet has several important benefits. Rich in antioxidants and nutrients, it’s no surprise that herbal teas also fall in the category of “home remedies for heartburn.”
They reduce acid reflux symptoms by soothing your upset stomach and aiding the digestive process. They also have antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that fight substantially against acid reflux symptoms.
Most herbal teas contain a unique amino acid that helps relieve stress. This remedy will show promising results because stress is a vast GERD trigger.
Best herbal teas for acid reflux
- Chamomile tea has anti-inflammatory properties.
- Ginger herbal tea will reduce the chances of acids escaping through the lower esophageal sphincter.
- Lavender herbal teas are known for their aid to the digestive system.
- Lemongrass tea is a natural diuretic that will help with your GERD symptoms.
Probiotics are dietary supplements that contain a mix of live bacteria and yeast. They have several benefits and are essential for your body to function properly. Normally, these microorganisms reside naturally in your stomach, but when faced with diseases like acid reflux and GERD, more probiotics can be introduced into your body for additional assistance.
Probiotics essentially introduce more “good bacteria” into your system, which then fights off the root cause of your digestive issue.
They can help your heartburn and regurgitation symptoms by improving digestive health and balancing the microbiome. It is recommended for acid reflux patients to use probiotics consisting of lactobacilli and bifidobacteria.
The standard method to take probiotic supplements is to eat them around 30 minutes before the meal (preferably on an empty stomach). Studies suggest that this specific method accelerates their functions.
Foods that are good sources of probiotics
It is up to you whether you want to take probiotics in supplement form or these probiotic-rich healthy foods.
- Kefir (fermented milk)
- Tempeh (fermented soybean)
- Kombucha green tea
15. Relaxation Techniques
Using relaxation techniques for stress-caused acid reflux is a remedy that can be done anywhere at any time. Muscle relaxation will reduce acid exposure and help with your symptoms.
Some of the most effective relaxation techniques are listed below but try to find a relatively silent place and seat yourself comfortably before following them.
- Close your eyes in a relaxed manner
- Flex your forehead, wrinkle your nose, and raise your eyebrows
- Clench your jaw by gritting your teeth
- Flex your neck and arch your back
- Hold deep breaths now and then to tense your chest
- Flex your muscles, thighs, arms, and biceps
- Get up and flex your feet
The exercise should take 5-10 minutes; for this to work properly, you’ll need to be extremely patient and relaxed. You can also follow other breathing exercises, and with enough practice, you’ll be able to take control of your body in no time.
16. Eat Slowly And Chew Food Well
It may sound surprising, but yes, something as simple as your manner of eating can affect acid reflux. Research has shown that people who eat quickly and in a rush are more likely to develop GERD than slow eaters.
When you eat quickly, your brain doesn’t get a chance to generate the feeling of “fullness,” and you keep overeating. As we discussed above, large meals are bad for several reasons, and they pressure your digestive system.
By following this remedy and eating slowly, you will prevent overeating and obesity, which is one of the main risk factors for acid reflux.
When you chew your food thoroughly, a signal is sent to your stomach by the brain to start preparing the hydrochloric acid and to prepare for the digestion process, so when you chew hurriedly, that signal doesn’t get sent, and indigestion problems occur afterward.
It is also effective because chewing food substances more properly break them into smaller particles and makes it easy for your reflux-infected stomach to digest them
17. Avoid Lying Down After Eating
Digestion is a thing that directly impacts acid reflux, and even a slight inefficiency during that process can result in worsened acid reflux.
Eating big meals and lying down afterward can cause acids and bile to leak into your esophagus, so it’s strongly recommended that you avoid lying down after eating.
When you remain upright after eating, your stomach will function more effectively and quickly digest the swallowed contents. This will essentially decrease the chance of those contents refluxing later on.
You should wait 45-60 minutes after eating and then go to bed. During that time, you’ll be able to recognize any symptoms before going to bed, and rather than being woken up by them in the middle of the night, you’ll be able to address them before sleeping.
18. Eat a High-fiber Diet
With its abundant benefits and digestive properties, fiber is the ultimate best friend for every acid reflux patient. Professional doctors and nutritionists recommend adopting a high-fiber diet once you develop acid reflux.
Fiber improves esophageal motility and reduces the chances of acids leaking into the esophagus. It does this by absorbing most of the liquids from your stomach, and when acid levels are low, reflux also decreases.
It is recommended to eat a high-fiber diet because, unlike high-fat foods, fiber acts as a digestive aid for your system.
Best sources of fiber
- Root vegetables
- Green vegetables
- Whole grains
- Seeds, nuts, dried fruits
- Acid-reflux-friendly fruits
Caution: always remember that excess fiber can cause diarrhea and stomach pain.
19. Use a Humidifier
A humidifier is an electrical appliance that is used as a way to add moisture to the surrounding air as its name suggests, a “humidifier” increases “humidity” in the desired area.
One of the most discomforting side effects of acid reflux is sinus infections.
The stomach acids that cause heartburn can also reach your nasal passages when lying down or bending over. When that happens, your sinuses will swell and cause symptoms such as a runny nose, irritability, bad breath, excess mucus discharge, high temperature, and a reduced sense of smell.
A humidifier will help in this situation by increasing the water content in the airways and clearing out the nasal passages. It will also create a humid environment that will make it easier for you to blow out excessive mucus.
If you are using a humidifier for acid reflux, make sure to follow the necessary precautions listed below
- Keep a safe distance
- Change the filter regularly
- Change the water daily
- Keep the machine clean
20. Eat Papaya or Pineapple
Papaya and pineapple are gerd-friendly fruits that are not only delicious but rich in medicinal properties. They are rich in riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, and folate, which are all helpful compounds.
Eating papaya or pineapple for acid reflux is considered a good home remedy because they are abundant in digestive enzymes. There is no scientific evidence to back up this home remedy, but it is generally known that papaya contains papain which primarily helps in protein digestion. Papaya is a fruit with low acidity that can be eaten as a source of vitamin c as well.
Meanwhile, pineapple consists of bromelain, which is an enzyme that not only aids digestion but acts as an anti-inflammatory agent as well. Pineapple juice also controls the flow of hydrochloric acid in your stomach, making this fruit good for acid reflux.
Home Remedies For Heartburn: 20 Fast Ways To Get Rid Of Acid Reflux Summary
In this article, we discussed some of the most trustworthy and effective home remedies for heartburn that are known for their promising results.
The next time your episode gets out of control, remember to follow these 20 fast ways to get rid of acid reflux.
There is no definite way to determine which remedies will be most effective for you, so try them all from time to time and see for yourself.
Better yet, consult a doctor and get a treatment plan well-suited for the nature and severity of your specific symptoms.
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