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    Ten Ways to Avoid Heartburn

    Ten Ways to Avoid Heartburn

    by Alex Brecher November 25, 2022

    If you get heartburn sometimes, you probably dread the strong, painful, burning sensation in your chest that can strike quickly. There’s a good chance you are looking for ways to avoid it, and the good news is that there are many possibilities. Here are 10 ways to avoid heartburn that you can run by your healthcare provider to see if they’re good options for you to try.

  • Eat smaller meals.
  • Heartburn happens when acid from your stomach pushes up from your stomach to your esophagus. The burning feeling comes from the acid against the lining of your esophagus. It can be more likely when there’s pressure from your stomach.

    Large meals can cause heartburn by increasing pressure from your stomach on the lower esophageal sphincter, or LES. Acid can push through to the esophagus. Eating smaller meals, and keeping your stomach less full, can help reduce this pressure so you can avoid heartburn.\Eat earlier.

    Many Americans eat their biggest meal of the day at dinner, or they have an after-dinner or late-night snack. These are bad choices for heartburn because that means your stomach can be overly full when you go to bed. As you lie down, heartburn can occur. Instead, consider having a smaller dinner, and finishing your last meal or snack of the day at least two to three hours before bedtime to give your stomach a chance to empty a bit.

  • Watch what you eat and drink.
  • Many people believe that certain foods and beverages are triggers. These are some possible triggers for people. 

    • Acidic foods, such as citrus fruits and orange juice, tomatoes, and vinegar.
    • Acidic beverages, such as coffee and colas. Alex’s Low Acid Coffee is a lower-acid alternative to regular coffee.
    • Sparkling or carbonated beverages.
    • Onions and garlic.
    • Spicy food.
    • Peppermint.
    • Chocolate.
    • Alcoholic beverages. 

    If you think your diet may be triggering heartburn, consider eliminating the suspected problem foods or beverages one at a time to see which may be the culprit. It’s also best to ask your doctor for advice.

  • Change your sleeping position.
  • When you’re lying down, your stomach can put more pressure on the LES. One strategy is to li4 on your left side to reduce pressure on your esophagus. Another strategy is to sleep with the upper half of your body in an upright position. You can buy a special support or arrange some pillows to help support your torso and keep you upright as you are in bed.

  • Loosen your belt.
  • A tight belt can put pressure on your waist, which in turn causes pressure on your stomach and can lead to heartburn. Keeping your belt loose can help, and you might do better by eliminating the belt altogether. Instead, clothes with looser waists can keep you more comfortable throughout the day.

  • Choose high-fiber foods.
  • It may seem funny to choose high-fiber foods to prevent heartburn, since fiber is a nutrient that takes a while to pass through your system and it’s not fully digestible. However, there’s some sense to this strategy. The idea is that fiber helps move things along in your digestive tract. Preventing a buildup can help reduce the chance of too much pressure leading to heartburn.

    These are some sources of fiber.

    • Vegetables, such as broccoli, leafy greens, carrots, sweet potatoes, artichokes, green beans, asparagus, cabbage, and eggplant.
    • Fruit, such as apples, oranges, berries, and peaches.
    • Whole grains, such as oatmeal, shredded wheat, wheat bran, whole-wheat bread and pasta, and brown rice.
    • Beans, lentils, and peas
    • Nuts and seeds, such as peanuts, almonds, cashews, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds. 
  • Drink more water
  • This one also may sound funny at first, since water fills you up, but again, this tip is about digestion and moving things along. Like fiber does, water helps prevent constipation. Another benefit is that drinking more water can help with weight loss, and that’s good for heartburn, too. A strategy to drink more water is to add an extra cup between meals.Exercise smartly. 

    Regular exercise can help with…you guessed it…regularity! Along with fiber and water, exercise helps reduce constipation and it can relieve stomach discomfort. It can help reduce heartburn and can also help with weight control.

    When you exercise, be sure to wait for a while after eating, especially if you’re exercising intensely, to prevent heartburn. Also be aware that doing exercises lying down, such as sit-ups and mat pilates, can lead to heartburn.

  • Avoid tobacco.
  • Tobacco is a definite trigger for heartburn. If you don’t use it, you’re doing well! If you smoke or use other tobacco products, there are many programs to help you quit. A healthcare provider can direct you to resources, and many of them are free for everyone or covered under insurance. It can take 20, 30, or more tries to quit, so be persistent. The benefits are worth it when it comes to heartburn and many other health risks.

  • Check your caffeine consumption.
  • Caffeine can be a trigger for heartburn, so if you have a lot of it, you might want to cut back on it or eliminate it. Caffeine increases your stomach’s production of acid. Plus, it relaxes the sphincter that helps prevent heartburn when it’s tightly shut. 

    Coffee is a major source of caffeine for Americans, but you can still enjoy coffee with less or no caffeine. Alex’s Low Acid Coffee comes in Decaf and Half Caff versions, using the same great blend of coffee beans.

    Heartburn can change your life and make you think about every move you make or everything you eat and drink. There are many ways you can work to avoid heartburn, and choosing a lower-acid coffee, such as Alex’s Low Acid Coffee, may be worth a try. Just talk to your doctor if you have any health concerns.

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