9 Ways To Relieve Acid Reflux Without Medication

Are antacids like Mylanta, Rolaids, and Tums must-haves in your pocket? Do these OTC medications spoil the fun of good food? Many people suffer from the same. According to research by the American Journal Of Medicines, acid reflux or GERD is a highly prevalent condition that has a massive impact on the US healthcare system.

People often prefer medications and surgery to ease acid reflux. Medicines do provide instant relief from acid reflux, but consuming these medicines for a long time might cause some side effects.

If you have mild to moderate symptoms, try changing your diet and adding natural alternatives for quick relief instead of reaching for that little purple pill. Let’s talk about the 9 ways to relieve acid reflux without medication for long-lasting results.

1. Changes in Diet

Changes in diet, certain foods or eating habits can significantly help ease symptoms of acid reflux.

1.1 Identify Trigger Food

To ease heartburn or acid reflux, you need to avoid some foods that trigger its symptoms.

1.1.1 Fatty Foods

  • Fried items
  • High-fat meal
  • High-fat dairy

1.1.2 Citrus Fruits

  • Orange
  • Lemon
  • Grapes
  • Pineapple
sliced oranges and lemons
Photo by Dids on Pixels

1.1.3 Beverages

  • Carbonated beverages
  • Alcohol
  • Tea, coffee and other caffeinated drinks

1.1.4 Vegetables

  • Tomato
  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Chili

Removing these foods from your diet can speed up your healing process. Keep notes to find out what foods make your symptoms worse and remove them from your diet.

1.2 Adopt a Low-Acid Diet

Experts suggest a Saatvik or balanced diet. Eat in moderation. Take a nutritious diet, comprising more carbs, fewer proteins and very little fat.

melon and bananas
Photo by Alleksana on Pixels

What Food Reduces Stomach Acid?

Try to avoid stale or excessively spicy food; instead, add these to your diet:-

  • Fish (All seafood, grilled, baked, boiled, or bolled).
  • Tofu (Tofu, coagulated soy milk, vegetarian staple protein).
  • Ginger (Spicy, zesty flavour-try ginger tea, candy, jam, etc.).
  • Oatmeal (One of the best breakfast foods, great with bananas).
  • Rice and Whole Grains (Best is brown rice and healthy bread).
  • Salad/Vegetables (Excluding onions, tomatoes, garlic, peppers).
  • Melon (Best fruits for most refluxers cantaloupe, honeydew…).
  • Bananas (Low-acid fruit, but a trigger food for 5% of people).

Foods that trigger acid reflux might differ from one another. That’s why pay attention to your symptoms and avoid food that worsens them.

2. Positional Changes

Many people don’t believe that changing sleeping position can also cure acid reflux to some extent.

Here’s how:-

2.1 Elevate Your Head During Sleep

Try sleeping on your left side. It helps promote digestion, clear toxins, and soothe heartburn and back pain.

Create an incline with bed leg risers or a foam wedge support so gravity can aid digestion, which helps prevent acid reflux.

2.2 Post-Meal Activities To Relieve Acid Reflux

Lying down after eating can worsen acid reflux; take a brief walk after meals. Walking can help reduce pressure on your stomach and speed up the digestive process, reducing the risk of acid reflux. Begin it with a lower and manageable pace and gradually increase it over time.

photo of a man and a woman wearing sports clothing
Photo by Ketut subiyanto on Pixels

3. Maintain Healthy Weight

Are acid reflux and excess weight linked to each other? Yes, absolutely. Being overweight may increase the pressure on your stomach, causing stomach acid to flow back into the esophagus, causing heartburn or acid reflux.

3.1 How To Maintain Your Weight?

Focus on these four things if you want to manage excess weight:-

  • Balanced and nutritious diet.
  • Regular physical activities
  • Portion control

4. Apple Cider Vinegar

Mix one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and 1 tablespoon of honey with a glass of warm water and drink it whenever you feel discomfort or pain caused by heartburn.

Avoid taking apple cider vinegar for a long time as it can cause some side effects because of its acidic nature. Start with small doses, stopping if any side effects occur. Don’t try if you’re allergic to it.

5. Keep Yourself Hydrated

The body needs a good amount of water daily for all its activities. The body uses this water daily, so you must meet it in time.

Drinking water frequently can help food pass properly through the gastrointestinal system, reducing the chances of acid reflux.

A study found that taking frequent sips of water can cure a refractory cough caused by GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), a chronic part of Acid Reflux.

6. Home Remedies For Acid Reflux

When you feel heartburn, these easy-to-find kitchen ingredients help you to relieve it quickly. Follow the instructions given below.

6.1. Aloe Vera

Aloe vera gel is good for our digestive system. It helps reduce acid reflux, promotes digestive health, and soothes heartburn. Let’s make aloe vera juice to treat acid reflux.

Take 3-4 inches of aloe vera gel, peel it, and take the gel out of it. Add a whole stalk of celery and 1 cucumber so that you can tolerate its flavour. Grind it together, and you’re good to go.

6.2. Honey

honey on plate and spoon
Photo by Roman Odintsov on Pixels

Manuka honey is widely known for its antibacterial properties. Instead of using manuka honey as it is, consider taking it with herbal teas or salads. It allows you to enjoy both the benefits of honey and its dietary benefits.

6.3. Fennel Seeds

Soak a teaspoon of fennel seeds in water overnight. Stain the water in the morning and drink frequent sips throughout the day.

You can also try fennel tea, chew it as it is or use it in spice blends. Consuming fennel seeds reduces inflammation in the bowel and decreases the risk of indigestion.

6.4. Turmeric

Prepare turmeric golden milk by adding a teaspoon of turmeric powder, a dash of cinnamon, a pinch of ginger, and 1 teaspoon of honey in a glass of warm milk. This bedtime drink works like a miracle for improving digestion and relaxed sleep.

It’s always recommended to consult a healthcare professional before using any natural remedy for acid reflux.

7. Yoga

Practising yoga daily will help you treat acid reflux and improve digestion. Explore how:-

photo of woman in a yoga position
Photo by Cliff booth on Pixels

7.1. Markatasana

Lie on your back. Spread your hands to shoulder level, palms facing upwards. Keep your body straight. Inhale and raise your left leg at 90° to the ground. Then exhale and bring it towards the right hand, touching it if possible while keeping the right leg straight.

Now, turn your neck to the left and look at your left palm while breathing normally. Hold this posture for some time, and then return to the original position. Repeat with your right leg. Do this asana 2-3 times.

Benefits:- Strengthens adrenal glands, kidneys, liver, spleen and intestine. Counters indigestion, constipation and obesity. Removes stiffness of legs and back muscles. It renders the spine more flexible.

7.2. Trikonasana

Stand straight. Keep your spine long and open your arms. Widen your legs. Bend your body to the right side and try to touch your ankle with your fingertips. Take 10-12 deep breaths. Do the same with the left side. Repeat 4-5 times.

Benefits:- Practicing this asana can improve digestion. It is also known to reduce stress, anxiety and blood pressure.

Caution: If you suffer from back pain, avoid this asana.

7.3. Dhanurasana

Lie on your stomach with your face down. Bend your legs and hold your ankles with your hands. Inhale and raise your torso and chest. Tilt your neck back, eyes gently closed. Your body should rest on your belly. Arch the back into a bow shape. Breathe normally. Return to the base position. Repeat twice.

woman bow pose
Photo by Elina fairytale on Pixels

Benefits: Exercises the spine fully, making it stronger and more flexible. Benefits the lungs, heart, kidney, liver, intestines, spleen and stomach. Strengthens all digestive organs.

7.4. Agnisaar Kriya

Stand erect, your feet apart by a foot; place your hands on your knees and loosen your belly. Exhale and pull the stomach to the extent possible. Then loosen and release the stomach. Then relax and inhale.

Benefits: Boosts the functioning of the digestive system. Keeps the stomach light.

7.4.1 YOGA DOS AND DON’TS

  • The best time for yoga is in the morning before breakfast when you are calm and fresh and ready to push your body and mind.
  • Always practise yoga in a room or place that is quiet, clutter-free, well-ventilated and pleasant.
  • Wear clothes you find comfortable for yourself. Form-fitting cotton/lycra gear is also good.

8. Avoid Tight Clothing

Opt for loose-fitting or breathable fabric attire to alleviate pressure on the stomach, minimizing heartburn discomfort.

9. Quit Smoking

Smoking can worsen the symptoms of acid reflux, turning it into gastroesophageal reflux disease, which is a chronic version of acid reflux. There is a muscular wall in our stomach called the Sphincter, which keeps the content from our stomach flowing back into the esophagus.

Smoking weakens this muscular wall, leading the content to flow backward, which causes heartburn. To avoid acid reflux symptoms, avoid smoking, and you might see noticeable results.

close up photo of lighted cigarette stick
Photo by pixabay on Pixels

Conclusion

Approximately 20 million Americans are taking an acid-inhibiting drug to treat acid reflux. There are natural remedies to help ease heartburn without the adverse side effects.

If you have to deal with its symptoms one or two times per week, these natural ways might help you. But, if you often suffer from acid reflux or heartburn symptoms, you might need medication or surgery. Feel free to look out for medical professionals’ advice, as they can give you medicines according to the severity of the condition.

Last Updated on by Gautam

Authors

Ayushi Jindal
Sathi Chakraborty, MSc Biology

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *