Diet Advice for Treating GERD and Acid Reflux – What to Know
Those who suffer from gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) know the feeling of a stomach rumbling so loudly that other people in the room can hear it. While it is tempting to open the fridge or a bag of chips to satisfy the monstrous grumbling in your belly, carelessly stuffing yourself with snacks often comes with painful consequences.
Sufferers of GERD have to be more careful with their diet, both for their comfort and their long-term health. A poorly managed diet can result in anything from regular, minor discomfort to outright pain.
How does GERD happen?
Gastroesophageal reflux disease is when the stomach acids leak back into the esophagus. While it’s often just called acid reflux, this is a misnomer, as GERD refers to more frequent and severe appearances than occasional acid reflux.
If you have been getting acid reflux one or more times a week, you are likely suffering from GERD. The disease, however inconvenient at times, is easily manageable with adjustments in lifestyle and diet.
How should I change my diet?
One of the first things you should take into account when dealing with GERD is the amount of food you eat. If you are known to binge-eat regularly, it might be time to cut back and allow your stomach to settle. Having increased volumes of food in the stomach can make it easier for acid to travel up the esophagus.
The next thing that should be taken into account is the type of food or drinks you consume. Fatty foods, alcohol, and acidic drinks like coffee and soda can all trigger acid reflux in your body.
Finally, you could stock up foods and drinks that battle and neutralize acid reflux in your stomach, such as:
- Non-citrus fruits
- Crackers with nut butter
- Raw vegetables with hummus
- Baked chips
- Baked chicken strips
- Lean non-red meat in thin strips
- Oatmeal or high-fiber cereal
- Baked potatoes, sweet potatoes, or yams
- Rice cakes
- Granola bars
- Low-fat dairy
- Hard-boiled eggs
- Smoothies of vegetables and non-citrus fruits
Moderation of your intake is definitely important in this case. One effective strategy is to replace the traditional three meals a day with smaller portions taken more frequently throughout the day. A recommended regimen is eating three small meals a day, with two small snacks in between.
GERD doesn’t have to mean switching to boring food with no flavor. The trick is to get creative with ingredients that don’t aggravate your condition. There are many delicious substitutes and cuisines to be discovered—all with tasty options.
If it really can’t be avoided, make sure to snack on the acid-reflux foods very lightly and very carefully. Observe your condition as you eat, and if needed, stop before it gets worse.
If that doesn’t work, see a doctor
The disease can cause nausea or difficulty swallowing. In such events, it might be time to see a doctor, especially if the acidity gets worse. Meet with a gastroenterologist for medication and a diet plan that can help reduce the discomfort from your condition.
While gastroesophageal reflux disease is a fickle and annoying enemy, it certainly can be managed with a proper diet and a few lifestyle adjustments. Eating doesn’t have to be less enjoyable with GERD. You just need some creativity in your plan and room in your palate for some new flavors.
For more information on gastroesophageal reflux disease, we at Reflux Away have the resources you need to deal with GERD more easily and strategically. Check out our other blog posts for more information.
If you’re looking to treat GERD, visit our Heartburn No More website today to see how we can help!