June 6, 2013

A Few Ways to Deal with Heartburn at Home

Natural Home Remedies for HeartburnHeartburn is one of the most common conditions experienced by people around the world, and let’s face it, acid reflux can be quite unpleasant (yes, heartburn and acid reflux are basically one and the same). It happens when the stomach rejects acid up through your throat, landing in your esophagus.

It basically gives you a burning sensation in your chest and neck, and if not treated, I can contribute to the development of serious inflammations and in some rare cases, it can even lead to the development of esophageal cancer.

Chances are that you know about a bunch of medications that can help you get rid of it, and while I’m not saying you shouldn’t try them, there are simple and inexpensive treatment methods and lifestyle changes you can and should try first. And so, without further ado, here’s a look at a few ways you can deal with heartburn at home.

How Herbal Remedies Fare

To start things off, though there isn’t much in the way of products or research in this domain, it was determined that at least nine different herbs can contribute to healing heartburn. These include
  • Angelica
  • Caraway
  • Clown’s mustard plant
  • Greater celandine
  • Licorice
  • Lemon balm
  • Milk thistle
  • German chamomile
  • Peppermint
There is actually a substance called Iberogast which combines all of them, and it was shown to reduce heartburn and any pain associated with it. Unfortunately though, it is still unclear which specific combination of ingredients leads to the reduction of symptoms.

Other Natural Options

There are other natural ways of helping yourself with heartburn, and one of them is to take melatonin supplements. It is produced naturally by your body to help you sleep, and certain experts suggested that taking it as a supplement can help to relieve the condition.

Apart from that, you could try drinking eight to ten ounces of milk as a snack in-between meals. It can help soothe the pain in the short-term, but do not overdrink it as the acids found in milk will accelerate the production of acid in your stomach. In other words, drinking too much of it can make things worse, but in small doses, it can make it better.

Is Chewing Gum the Solution?

If you have been looking into the problem for some time now then chances are that you have heard about the supposed power of gum when it comes to heartburn relief. Well, buckle your seatbelts, because as surprising as it may seem, chewing gum can do wonders for heartburn. Seeing as how it stimulates the production of saliva, one of the best acid buffers in our bodies, and forces you to swallow more often, it will push the acid out of your esophagus and down back into the stomach.

Lifestyle Changes

Apart from concrete things you can try to relieve yourself of the condition, there are certain changes to your lifestyle you can bring that will without a doubt help you with the problem (and probably a few others too).

For starters, you need to watch your diet. Certain foods are actually known to trigger heartburn, such as chocolate, soda, caffeine, tomatoes, onions, and pretty much any food high in fat content. Try and include more fiber sources in your diet so as to promote a healthy digestive system (and thus reduce the changes of it spitting acid back into your trachea), and reduce the size of your portions as eating large quantities of food causes large amounts of acid to be produced. The timing is also important; make sure your stomach can empty itself before you go to sleep as the position in which you lie down makes it easier for acid to seep into your esophagus.

Losing weight can also help to relieve heartburn as carrying excess fat around your stomach can, from time to time, force your stomach to compress, sending the acid the up and into your esophagus. You don’t need to become a bodybuilder; just exercise regularly and eat healthy. Also, in the same vein, tight clothes, such as skinny jeans, can put pressure on your abdomen and force the acid upwards.

As you can see, there is no shortage of options for those suffering from heartburn, and I personally recommend you give a few of them a try (especially the lifestyle changes part) before going for pills. If, however, nothing seems to work for you, then it is recommended you visit a doctor for you may have what is known as gastrointestinal reflux disease, which unfortunately requires a special course of treatment.

Related articles:

Heartburn No More – The Definitive Acid Reflux Cure

In a nutshell, it is a holistic system which aims to change basically change your lifestyle in a way that will permanently cure your acid reflux. Most of the changes, as you can guess, revolve around doing certain exercises and changing your dietary habits.

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