Ease GERD by Avoiding Key Foods
Many people blame their heartburn on spicy meals, but even garlic and onions can cause GERD. If you find that hot, spicy foods are the cause, try lowering the quantity of the spices. It does not have to burn to taste good!
Acidic foods such as citrus fruit and tomatoes can be a cause of heartburn, especially if eaten alone or on an empty stomach. If you are sensitive to acid, even vinegar in salad dressings can be a trigger. Try eliminating these foods for a time and see if your GERD improves.
Some people chew gum after a meal to aid digestion. Although peppermint is known to help with digestion, it also relaxes the lower esophageal sphincter, thereby actually causing the problem rather than eliminating it.
Drinks that Cause GERD
Coffee and caffeinated drinks can cause heartburn in some sufferers, and even decaffeinated drinks and alcohol can be a trigger. Alcohol and caffeine increase acid in the stomach and can also cause the lower esophageal sphincter to relax. Soda may cause bloating. Try drinking bottled water or herbal teas for a day or two and see if your symptoms improve.
Chocolate, alas, can also be a trigger of GERD, but if you cannot handle a chocolate-free day, try just eating a small portion. Also, consider what you ate before the chocolate. Is chocolate just the final straw after a fatty or overindulgent meal?
If none of these foods appear to be the trigger, maybe you are eating in a rush and are always on the go, which can be a cause of heartburn. Overeating can have the same results. It may not be what you are eating, but the quantity, so try eating smaller portions and enjoy your meal in a relaxed state to aid digestion. GERD should then be something that happens to other people, not to you.