If you experience a burning feeling in your stomach or throat, you’ll be happy to know there are plenty of safe, natural home remedies for acid reflux. These at-home remedies, along with diet and lifestyle changes, might help ease your discomfort. Let’s delve into a few of those options, as well as the reasons why acid reflux occurs in the first place.
How Symptoms of Acid Reflux Happen
Now, there are a lot of symptoms of acid reflux. Acid reflux may cause abdominal discomfort, burning in the throat, and bloating. Reflux and heartburn are closely related, and heartburn is a symptom of reflux.
The main culprit behind acid reflux is the esophageal sphincter. Your esophageal sphincter is a muscle located between your esophagus and stomach. When it works the way it should, it opens when you swallow, and then closes. If it stays open, acidic liquid can come back up into your esophagus.
Gastric acid may eventually move through the esophagus and up into your throat. As a result, many people experience heartburn, a sore throat, and an acidic taste in the mouth. People with gastroesophageal reflux are all too familiar with this problem.1
Natural Remedies for Heartburn
There are several ways you can ease the discomfort of acid reflux using natural ingredients – here are a few options to consider:
You might have heard that the aloe vera plant has medicinal qualities. Research indicates that aloe juice can help soothe problems associated with digestion – and many people find it to be an effective remedy for acid reflux.2
Your gastrointestinal tract contains billions of bacteria, some good and some bad. When the bad bacteria outnumber the good, that can result in digestion problems. These include the symptoms associated with acid reflux.
Your body needs hydrochloric acid (HCL acid) for digestion. It actually kills much of the harmful bacteria in the gut. But sometimes, your body may need help maintaining a healthy balance between beneficial and harmful microbes. An abundance of bad bacteria can lead to gas that puts pressure on your esophageal sphincter.3
Probiotics are good bacteria that help digestion by balancing out bad bacteria.
According to one study, probiotics are a fantastic way to balance gut bacteria completely naturally.4 They may also help reduce leaky gut – a condition in which toxins leak from the stomach into the bloodstream.5
Did you know that licorice may play a role in neutralizing stomach acid? Turns out, it might help soothe acid reflux symptoms. Well, it’s not exactly the licorice you’ll see in the candy store. It’s a type of licorice extract known as deglycyrrhizinated licorice, or DGL.
Licorice gets its taste from a substance known as glycyrrhizin, which has been linked to high blood pressure.6 DGL, on the other hand, has the glycyrrhizin taken out. As an added benefit, according to one study, DGL is a fantastic option for easing the symptoms of acid reflux.7
If you have a lot of acid in your esophagus, chewing sugar-free gum might help reduce that acidity.8 Interestingly, though, the gum itself isn’t what helps. It’s actually the act of chewing that does the trick.
You see, chewing helps with saliva production, and saliva has been shown to help clear the esophagus of acid.9
Does Baking Soda Help Heartburn Symptoms?
You already know baking soda has many uses – but what you might not know is that it could also help bring relief from acid reflux. Baking soda does a great job of neutralizing stomach acid. The main reason is it has a pH level of 9.10
What does that mean? Well, pH level (pH stands for “potential of hydrogen”) is a measure of acidity on a scale from -1 to 15. Anything below 7 is considered to be acidic, while anything above that number is alkaline. Pure water has a pH value of 7.11
Be sure to speak with your doctor before you use baking soda for acid reflux. It could interfere with medications you might be taking – so it’s best to consult with your doctor before making any changes. If you get the OK, mix a half a teaspoon in a half a cup of water. That could provide relief from any symptoms you’re experiencing.
Which Lifestyle Changes Bring Maximum Relief For Reflux Patients?
There are also a few lifestyle changes you might want to consider if you’re suffering from symptoms of acid reflux. These include:
Follow a healthy diet. Adopting an acid reflux diet might help reduce discomfort and other symptoms of reflux. Avoiding citrus juices, fatty, greasy foods, and tomato-based products may also help.12
Try coconut oil. Coconut oil doesn’t necessarily help with acid reflux directly – but it has been shown to support a healthy weight. For many people, weight loss has been shown to help reduce reflux symptoms.13 (Try adding a teaspoon to a cup of hot tea. It’s delicious!)14
Stop drinking soda. Carbonated beverages may weaken your esophageal sphincter, increasing the risk for reflux.15 Drink a glass of water instead. Cutting back on carbonated sodas may also help you slim down and maintain a healthy body weight.
These are just a few of the home remedies and lifestyle changes that could help you get rid of the symptoms of acidity. If you’re concerned about acid reflux, be sure to talk with your doctor before trying any new potential remedies – he or she will know what’s best for your unique health needs.
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