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12 Foods to Avoid with Acid Reflux

Foods to avoid with acid reflux

Acid reflux is a common condition that occurs when stomach acid flows back into the esophagus and causes a burning sensation behind the breastbone. Certain foods can trigger or worsen your symptoms if you suffer from acid reflux.

Many people can avoid acid reflux just by making simple changes to their eating habits. Here are some common foods to avoid with acid reflux so you can escape the discomfort of heartburn.

Food to Avoid with Acid Reflux

  1. Fatty or Fried Food: Foods high in fat can slow digestion and increase the likelihood of acid reflux and indigestion. High-fat foods to avoid if you have acid reflux include french fries, potato chips, onion rings, high-fat red meats, and peanut butter.
  2. Spicy Foods: Certain spicy foods create a burning sensation on the mucous membranes of the stomach and the esophagus, which causes the stomach to produce excess stomach acid. Avoid spices such as chili powder, chili oil, white and black pepper, and cayenne pepper if you suffer from acid reflux.
  3. Citrus: Citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, grapefruits, and their juices are acidic. Eating acidic food can increase the acid in the stomach and can worsen acid reflux symptoms.
  4. Tomato: Tomatoes are acidic, so foods like tomato sauce, salsa, pizza, or other tomato-based products can trigger and worsen heartburn and should be avoided.
  5. Mint and Peppermint: Mint and peppermint can relax the lower esophageal sphincter or LES, the muscle between the stomach and the esophagus, and contribute to acid reflux symptoms.
  6. Coffee: Caffeine in coffee can increase stomach acid production and promote acid reflux.
  7. Chocolate: Chocolate contains fat and caffeine, which can relax the lower esophageal sphincter, worsening acid reflux symptoms.
  8. Carbonated beverages: Soda and other carbonated drinks can lead to bloating and increase the pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter, increasing acid reflux.
  9. Onions and garlic: Onions and garlic commonly worsen symptoms of acid reflux because they also relax the LES, allowing stomach acid to flow back into the esophagus.
  10. Alcohol: Alcoholic beverages can irritate the esophagus and increase stomach acid production.
  11. High-Fat Dairy Products: Dairy, milk, and cheese products that are high in fat are known to aggravate heartburn symptoms. Furthermore, cold dairy products like ice cream can numb the LES allowing stomach acid to backflow into the esophagus.
  12. Foods High in Added Sugar: High-sugar foods can lead to bloating and indigestion.

Every person is unique, and acid reflux triggers can vary from person to person. Some people have a short list of foods to avoid with acid reflux, while others have a much longer list.

Occasional heartburn is not likely a cause for concern, but if you are experiencing persistent or severe acid reflux, schedule an appointment with a gastroenterologist today to receive personalized advice and recommendations for acid reflux treatment options.

Don’t continue to live with chronic heartburn and acid reflux – schedule an appointment day!

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