Suffering from acid reflux is more painful than many people believe so that when they do have a bout of what was formerly called ‘acid indigestion,’ they suddenly know how serious this can be. Whether you have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) or other conditions such as Ellison-Zollinger syndrome, it is imperative to understand that diet and lifestyle can go a long way in treating acid reflux and that there are certain acid reflux foods to avoid.
Acid Reflux Foods to Avoid List
Although there are certainly specific foods to avoid, it is more important to understand food groups that can trigger acid reflux. For example, chocolate is a known culprit. So when you are compiling an acid reflux foods to avoid list you may want to list chocolate for sure, but then you would need to have sub categories such as brownies, chocolate cake, chocolate cookies and things of that nature. Among the items on your acid reflux foods to avoid list would be:
- Alcohol (a beverage, yes – but a key trigger for acid reflux)
- Fats of any kind – including fried foods and even fats normally considered healthy
- Sweets – candies, sugary drinks, cakes, donuts, etc.
- Caffeine in any form – beverage, supplements, coffee, tea
- Mints – predominantly peppermint
- Citric acid – fruits, juices and a big culprit is tomatoes!
Of all the items on the acid reflux foods to avoid diet, chocolate is the hardest one for people to go without. Do you know just how many chocoholics there are in this world?
Lifestyle Changes Are Also Important
One of the items you will often find on an ‘acid reflux foods to avoid list’ is not a food at all. It is common to find tobacco listed on foods to avoid, but this is technically a ‘drug’ unless, of course, they are referring to someone who chews tobacco! However, on a serious note, tobacco does have serious repercussions besides the typical carcinogenic concerns and that is that tobacco has the unfortunate side effect of relaxing the lower esophageal sphincter which then allows stomach acid to push back up (reflux) into the esophagus where it doesn’t belong. The first item, therefore, on lifestyle changes is to quit smoking. This is easier said than done, but it is a necessary treatment for acid reflux as well as in terms of your overall health.
Dietary Habits, Obesity and Exercise
Dietary habits also need to be reassessed. How and when you eat is just as important as what you eat. It does absolutely no good to avoid certain foods if you are going to eat enormous meals that stretch your stomach and thus prompting acid reflux. It is recommended that those who have ongoing problems with acid reflux eat much smaller meals more frequently. Also, in conjunction with changes in eating habits, it is important to recognize that obesity and acid reflux do tend to go hand and hand. As you learn to control what you eat and how much you eat, the severity of acid reflux should subside to some extent.
It is suggested that light exercise may also be of some help even though data in this regard is inconclusive. What we do know is that extreme exercise can exacerbate acid reflux so be aware of this if you plan on adding exercise to your regimen to reduce weight as a remedy for acid reflux. Nonetheless, it is of prime importance to consult with a medical professional prior to treating what you feel is acid reflux because it may be some underlying condition which is even more serious. It is good to know which acid reflux foods to avoid, but it is better to know what is causing the symptoms in the first place.