[toc]Acid reflux is a disease in which the acids and gastric materials of stomach are thrown back into the food pipe and they reach upto the throat. About half the population of developed and developing nations suffer from acid reflux. It is a common disease, but if left untreated, it may cause some very serious damage to the body leading to cancer. There are tissue muscles between the esophagus (food pipe) and stomach which act as a valve and do not allow the gastric juices to flow into the food pipe. In this disease the valve tissue muscles weakens and starts malfunctioning, allowing the acids to seep into the food pipe.
Unlike the stomach there are no protective layers in esophagus to neutralize the corrosive effects of the gastric juices. So, when acid oozes into the esophagus, it starts corroding it and causes a burning sensation. It is also known as heartburn. It is imperative hat acid reflux should not be taken lightly because if left untreated it may lead to cancer.
Ways To Treat Acid Reflux
Symptoms of acid reflux are stomach bloating, belching, nausea, passing black stools, burning sensation in throat and heart. Over the counter medicines provide temporary relief but long term usage is not advised because there are many side effects. Making certain lifestyle changes, being aware of food intake and knowing the food, is necessary in treating acid reflux.
Drink lots of water, as water keeps the acids in the stomach diluted. Avoid having too cold or hot water; water at room temperature is the best. Half a glass every half an hour will be adequate.
No Lying Down After Meals
Lying down after meals discouraged because lying down after meals it allows the gastronomical juices to flow back into the food pipe. The habit of taking afternoon nap should be broken. If not possible, then take a nap while sitting on a chair. Going to bed is only advised after lapse of two hours of last meal.
Avoid Certain Foods
Foods like tomato, citrus, chocolate, garlic, mint, onions, spicy, greasy, etc. aggravates the symptoms of acid reflux and should be avoided. And also avoid any foods that makes you uncomfortable and think may be cause of acid reflux.
Being overweight, obese or having belly fat, elevates the symptoms of acid reflux. Being fat, constricts the stomach and pressurize it from all sides, and makes it throw it’s juices out into the food pipe. Loosing weight will significantly decrease the acid reflux symptoms.
Avoid Eating Large Meals
Large meal is never recommended, no matter how hungry or tasty the food is. Make a point to stop eating when half full. Instead of any large meal, eat six to eight small meals in a day. The idea is not to pack your stomach so much that gastronomical juices start overflowing. And also remember, never to be empty stomach; in empty stomach the production of digestive acids are more and starts corroding the tissue muscles.
No Alcoholic And Carbonated Beverages
Alcoholic and carbonated beverages should be avoided as these escalate the symptoms. Studies have shown that when people had reduced or stopped taking alcohols and carbonated drinks, their symptoms had been greatly reduced. Tea and coffee also come in the same category.
Desist Wearing Tight Clothes
Tight clothes, especially around the waist, restricts naturally movement of digestive juices in the stomach and throws the juices into the esophagus. Buy your clothes a size bigger. Never tighten your waist with a belt, instead of belts, try wearing suspenders.
Have half a glass of ice cold milk every two to three hours. Cold milk maintains the pH balance of the stomach and soothes the burning feeling. Hot or warm milk is not advisable as it produces more gas in the stomach and situation may worsen.
Do Vrajasana; this is the only yogic exercise that can be done just after having a meals. This asana is panacea of all stomach ailments. Wear loose fitting clothes, kneel down with both knees touching together, sit on back of your legs with your bottom touching your heels.
This exercise is most effective if it is done just after having a meal. Minimum duration for doing this exercise ten minutes with no maximum limit. This will not only cure acid reflux but all digestive disorders.
Tilt Your Bed
Raise the head side of the bed by four to five inches and sleep with extra pillows so that your upper body is at higher plinth than your lower body. When your upper body is raised then the laws of gravity does not allow the gastronomical juices to flow into the esophagus.
Baking soda being alkaline in nature and gastronomical juices being acidic, it neutralizes the acidity of stomach. Mix half a teaspoon of baking soda in water and drink it. It is advisable to go easy on this remedy because byproduct of this reaction produces lots of salt. If you are not careful, then you will be consuming lots of salt.
Chew more gum because chewing gum makes you to swallow saliva a lot. When saliva goes down then it does not allow the acids to flow back. Chewing gum is one of the easiest methods to treat acid reflux. Use gum that are sugarless and does not contains any preservatives or additives.]
Healing power of aloe is legendary, especially for skin and tissues. Drink a glass of aloe juice daily. Not only it will keep the stomach cool it will also repair all damages done by acid in the stomach and food pipe.
Drink licorice tea or chew on a licorice root. Licorice is anti-viral and anti-inflammatory, it soothes and heals stomach inflammation. It repairs the tissues of stomach valve which has been damaged by acid flux.
Drink buttermilk, flavored with roasted and grounded cumin. Have this drink after meals. Buttermilk soothes the stomach and treats all minor stomach ailments. It contains natural probiotic which is extremely good for gut fauna. Whereas, cumin adds flavor to it, helps in digestion and reduces after taste of acid reflux.