GERD Diet Plan: Best & Worst Foods + Natural Remedies

Foods which are high in protein such as lean meats, chicken, game, fish and even protein powders can be included in your recipes or made into speciality drinks can help to increase the muscle tone of the lower oesophageal sphincter (LES). This helps to close that important valve after the food has passed down into your stomach. This helps to prevent the stomach acids are refluxing back up into your lower oesophagus and causing heartburn.

GERD Diet – Safe foods

The foods you eat as well as environmental factors such as drinking and smoking can definitely contribute to GERD. These foods include chocolate, carbonated beverages (especially soda), alcoholic beverages, high-fat dairy and meat products, caffeine, citrus fruits, tomatoes, and oils. There aren’t always definitive answers about why GERD occurs. It could be partially related to a condition known as a hiatal hernia, which is when the upper part of the stomach protrudes through the opening of your diaphragm.

Trigger foods vary person to person, so to support the most people MyFoodMyHealth excludes the classically accepted culprits in the MyFoodMyHealth GERD diet and meal planner. GERD can really make meal times a nightmare for those who suffer from it. Symptoms of acid reflux disorder often flare up after consuming a meal, especially when laying down or reclining afterward. Lesser symptoms include heartburn, acid regurgitation, bloating, and belching, while more severe traits can include chronic coughing, laryngitis, and even dental erosions from acid exposure.

sample gerd diet menu

Snacks – low-fat hummus, vegetables, and sliced fruits are good snacks if you want to keep acid reflux at bay. Potatoes – baked, boiled or mashed potatoes, as well as plain pasta or rice don’t seem to trigger acid reflux. Soups – lean broth soups or soups made with lean ingredients, such as fat-free milk don’t seem to trigger GERD symptoms the way other soups, such as creamy or tomato soups do. Milk products – reduced-fat, low fat, or fat-free milk, yogurt, and cheese are safer for those who have acid reflux.

It’s important to avoid all foods and drinks that are known to cause discomfort. It also helps to incorporate foods that can ease or prevent GERD symptoms. Because of all the risks associated with long-term use of GERD and acid reflux/heartburn medications, many people choose to successfully treat GERD naturally. They make lifestyle changes and switch to a healthier diet. Eating a GERD diet – which includes cutting out various processed foods, alcohol and caffeine – is the very first place to turn your attention towards when tackling this painful condition.

Whether you were just diagnosed with acid reflux or you’re a vet who’s gotten off track with diet, it can be hard to find foods that work for your body. In my practice as a health coach, I’ve observed great success when people with acid reflux avoid common food triggers. These include high-fat foods, caffeine, chocolate, onions, tomatoes, and more, according to the International Foundation for Gastrointestinal Disorders.

High-fat foods – fried or fatty foods can relax the lower esophagus, leading to acid backing up. French fries, full-fat dairy, fried beef or pork, ice cream, potato chips, cream sauces or creamy salad dressings, as well as oily foods can trigger GERD symptoms.

In fact, acid reflux is the most common cause of non-cardiac chest pain, with about 10% of GERD patients having chest pain as their only presenting symptom (Makkar, Sachdev, Azad, 2004). Studies have found that chest pain caused by GERD can be ‘squeezing’ in nature and can actually radiate to the back of the neck, up the jaw, and down the arms.

Sit upright for 2 hours after your last meal or snack of the day. Elevate the head of the bed or mattress 6 to 8 inches. This helps prevent acid reflux especially when sleeping. Extra pillows by themselves are not very helpful.

Similarly, the severity level may be different, depending on the person, but it is important that you do not ignore any signs, even if you think they may not be significant. But, before we discuss the specifics of GERD diet, let’s take a look at the symptoms so you will know if you need to visit your doctor for tests and diagnosis. This valve is called the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) which is a band of muscles that contract and relax to form a protective barrier. When the LES becomes weak or does not close properly, then acid reflux can occur. Basically, there is a “one way valve” between your esophagus and stomach that allows food to enter the stomach but prevents it from refluxing back into the esophagus.

Baked goods – some baked goods are high in fat and should be avoided. For instance, croissants and doughnuts are high-fat foods. You can enjoy pancakes, waffles, bagels, or low-fat muffins if you suffer from GERD.

They can trigger symptoms of acid reflux because they put pressure on the stomach, making it easier for acid to push through the lower esophagus. Many carbonated drinks also contain caffeine. Caffeine – some people complain about their acid reflux symptoms right after consuming their morning coffee.

Things such as stress, anxiety, eating before bed, or eating too quickly can contribute to indigestion or heartburn, so determine if this may be the case before you eliminate something from your GERD diet completely. You may find that you can still enjoy these things in moderation simply by changing when you eat them. By changing the foods that you eat thereby creating a healthy GERD diet you may be able to reduce, or even eliminate, some of the signs of GERD. While we know medically what is happening in the body, there is really no explanation why something like eating tomatoes causes excruciating pain in one patient while having little effect on another.

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December 11, 2014

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