If acid reflux is troubling your stomach, a GERD diet may be an ideal solution. Try adding acidity relief foods like ginger, lean meats, oats, and egg whites to your diet to manage and maintain a healthy gut.
The best feeling in the world is finding a solution to a problem you never thought you could solve. Well, this is true for most of us. Especially if this problem involves popping pills to provide temporary relief. In this case, we are referring to acid reflux. The prevalence of acid reflux in India, according to various studies, ranges from 7.6% to 30%. It is also known as GERD. Gastroesophageal reflux disease is a chronic acid reflux condition.
But let’s not get wrapped up in this medical jargon. Before we dig deep into some permanent solutions to that burning sensation in your chest, which mainly include acidity relief foods, let us first understand what acid reflux is.
What is acid reflux?
There are instances when our abdominal muscles weaken. And when this happens, the food and the acid in your stomach travel back to your mouth. This can happen during sleep too. This issue is called acid reflux.
Some of the symptoms of acid reflux include chest pain, coughing, consistent burping, a sour aftertaste, and trouble swallowing food. However, these symptoms vary from person to person.
Foods to reduce acidity:
Diet and lifestyle modifications play an important role in maintaining acid reflux. Foods that reduce stomach acid also have positive implications on your overall health. We have listed below some foods that reduce your stomach acid reflux condition, which you can include in your GERD diet. This can be used as the first line of defence to overcome this condition.
1. Non-citrus fruits
Fruits that do not have citric acid in them, like bananas, apples, pears, watermelon, etc., are foods good for acidity as compared to the citrus ones like oranges, sweet limes (musambi), etc. A mixed fruit salad or a smoothie with such fruits can be a healthy and tasty option to include in your GERD diet.
One of the most effective foods to reduce acidity is ginger. Ginger has phenolic compounds that reduce contractions of the stomach and thus prevent acid reflux. Just a teaspoon of ginger juice added to your tea once can be food to eat during acidity. A small piece of ginger can also be grated or sliced and added into soups, salads, curries, etc.
3. Lean meat and seafood
Lean meat, especially chicken, seafood and fish without skin, is packed with protein and can be digested easily, making them effective acidity-relieving foods. The cooking method that you use to cook these meats is very important to prevent acid reflux. Baking, broiling, grilling, and poaching are methods that do not use too much oil. Being a highly effective food to eat in acidity, lean chicken kebab or fish curry are healthy options that can be included in the meals that can give you good protein as well as manage acid reflux.
Your acid reflux diet should include oats, which are loaded with fibre and aid in efficient digestion. Replacing low-fibre cereals, especially white rice, with oats will help relieve acid reflux. It has been observed that high fibre diets help manage acid reflux symptoms. Oats porridge is a very good breakfast option to start with. You can even have oats upma or oats khichdi as your main meals. Oats cookies are also an excellent option to have as a snack.
All the vegetables are naturally low in fat and sugar, which are two common foods that cause acid reflux. Unless you have certain vegetables that trigger your reflux, you can include a variety of vegetables like green beans, cauliflower, leafy greens like methi, palak, cucumbers, etc. in your acid reflux diet. Vegetable pulao, vegetable curry, and palak roti are some of the ways you can sneak veggies into your GERD diet plan.
6. Egg whites
Egg yolks can trigger acid reflux because of their high fat content. Instead, having only egg whites can be a good option for food to eat in acidity. An egg white omelette is an ideal breakfast that can help reduce acid reflux.
Certain herbs, like fennel, demulcents, comfrey, rosemary and chamomile have a soothing effect on your digestive system and are good foods to eat in acidity. A teaspoon of fennel seeds can be eaten after meals or a cup of chamomile tea can be had, which are foods to cure acidity.
Moderation is always the key when it comes to dieting against acid reflux. In your GERD diet plan, have small and frequent meals that include the above foods, and keep yourself physically active. This is a must to manage acid reflux. However, it is important to note that acid reflux might be associated with some other ailment. Hence, it is advised that people consult their doctor before altering their diet.