Acid reflux is the backward flow of stomach acid into the esophagus. This common ailment is frequently associated with heartburn and GERD. Acid reflux can manifest into GERD, also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease. Heartburn is a common symptom of GERD. Heartburn feels just like it sounds and happens when stomach acid is refluxed into the esophagus, the tube that connects the pharynx to the stomach. When acid is refluxed into the esophagus, it burns the esophageal tissue and is responsible for the burning sensation of heartburn.
All of these symptoms are indications of deficiency in the digestive system. The all natural herbal remedies for acid reflux disease, heartburn, and GERD we’ll be covering in this article are remedies that can be applied to a single one of these maladies as well as to all three. The goal is to alleviate these symptoms by strengthening the digestive system so the symptoms will naturally dissipate on their own.
What Causes Acid Reflux Disease?
There are various possible causes of acid reflux which include:
Excessive acid in the stomach
Poor eating habits
Typically, acid and other contents of the stomach are prevented from going up the esophagus by a sphincter known as the lower esophageal sphincter, or LES. When this sphincter fails to close properly, the acidic contents of the stomach can be propelled upwards, causing discomfort in the esophagus.
Many factors can cause the LES to malfunction. It’s important to understand that the LES is comprised mainly of muscles. Those muscles involuntarily contract to prevent the back flow of stomach contents into the esophagus. When muscles are weak they can’t contract properly, this is one cause for LES malfunction. Smoking, drinking alcohol, and certain medications can affect the muscles of the LES.
Excess pressure on the LES
A hiatal hernia can also be the cause of a malfunctioning LES. A hernia below the lower esophageal sphincter would put excessive pressure on the LES, causing it to remain open and allowing reflux. Obesity can also put excessive pressure on the LES, causing it to remain open. Other factors than can lead to acid reflux include, eating too quickly, drinking liquids with food, consuming an excessive amount of sugar, excess acid in the stomach, skipping meals, poor digestion, and stress.
Poor eating habits and acid reflux
Skipping meals can also cause acid reflux. When you get hungry, your digestive system is ready to break down food with digestive juices. Skipping meals means those juices aren’t used up, your body produces excess gas and bloating occurs. The excess air in the stomach can cause the LES not close properly and acid reflux may occur. Irregular eating patterns can also cause acid reflux. When you skip a meal your body learns to secrete less digestive juices the next time you eat. This means the food may not be broken down enough to be absorbed and it may remain in the stomach which can be a cause for acid reflux. Excessive acidity in the stomach can also cause acid reflux. Eating excessive amounts of sugar leads to an overly acidic stomach since most sugary foods are acid-forming. Eating large meals or meals high in fat can be hard to digest and can also be a cause of acid reflux.
Acid reflux and poor digestion
Poor digestion is a very common cause of acid reflux. Improve digestion naturally by eating more enzymes such as those found in papaya and enzymes. One of the most common mistakes made that leads to poor digestion is consuming liquids with meals. Drinks such as water, tea, juice, and soda, for example, can be harmful when consumed with a meal. Any liquid will dilute the digestive juices that are ready to break down food. Food that is not properly broken down can cause indigestion. Sugary drinks are especially bad because they are acid-forming and can cause food to putrefy more quickly and be more susceptible to bacterial growth. Liquids should not be consumed at least 20 minutes before or after meals.
Natural remedy for acid reflux disease
The many natural remedies for acid reflux include:
Lemons are beneficial in many ways. They can directly help with acid reflux by neutralizing acidity in the stomach, which can be a trigger for acid reflux. Lemons are also antibacterial and can help eliminate another cause of acid reflux, h.pylori bacteria. Additionally, lemons are great cleansing agents inside the body. They can help cleanse the kidneys and keep them healthy. Kidney failure is not directly associated with acid reflux. However, the kidneys are responsible for: filtering out toxins, creating some hormones, maintaining levels of: electrolytes, minerals, and blood pressure. When kidney failure occurs, toxins can build up, anemia may occur, blood pressure may spike, electrolytes will not be balanced, and the gastrointestinal system will be affected. Drinking lemon juice, or lemon oil drops, in water can help keep the kidneys clear and healthy and is beneficial to the rest of the body as well.
Click here for 25+ health benefits of lemons.
Fresh raw ginger, steeped in warm water, is one of the easiest and most reliable natural remedies for acid reflux. This remedy is best utilized for cases of acid reflux caused by indigestion. Ginger stimulates digestive enzymes and bile to help you digest better; it also helps eliminate gas. It’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties help reduce inflammation cause by the reflux of acid. If you experience bloating, indigestion, and/or acid reflux after eating protein, try chewing on some raw, peeled ginger. It’s protein-digesting enzyme, zingibain, will help break down protein and facilitate digestion as well as absorption. Ginger capsules can also be taken before meals to help stimulate the production of enzymes for better digestion. Additionally, these capsules can also be opened and mixed with hot water to make ginger tea.
Click here to learn more about the health benefits of ginger.
Use enzymes to aid digestion and help prevent acid reflux. Enzymes occur naturally in foods such as kefir, yogurt, pineapple, ginger, and papaya, for example. We recommend using products such as Food Enzymes, PDA, and for kids, Papayazymes. Any of these products can be tremendously helpful for individuals with digestive issues. If you have problems digesting, stay away from foods high in sugar and/or fat, and eat smaller meals. You can naturally improve digestion by eating 5 or 6 small meals throughout the day instead of 3 big meals. Additionally, you can add foods high in digestive enzymes to your diet to naturally help you improve digestion as part of a healthy lifestyle.
An unbalanced diet can also be a cause for acid reflux. Eating more leafy greens can help balance out a diet and keep the intestinal system clear. Keeping a colon clear of obstructions is especially important because obstructions in the intestines can lead to disease. The longer food stays in the colon the more ammonia it produces and it’s more susceptible to the growth of harmful bacteria. Leafy greens also contain chlorophyll which is highly beneficial when dealing with acid reflux. Chlorophyll cleanses and alkalizes the blood. Most leafy greens, like spinach, collard greens, and kale, are also rich in vitamins, and minerals like iron, calcium, and magnesium which can help the LES to relax and contract properly. If you suffer from a mineral deficiency, we recommend using Skeletal Strength; this product contains 9 minerals, including iron, magnesium, and calcium; 5 vitamins, and a few different enzymes.
Safflower is one of the best herbal remedies for neutralizing acidity that I’ve ever found. It works quickly and efficiently. Safflower can help naturally remedy acid reflux by eliminating acidity in the stomach and cleansing the gallbladder. The gallbladder plays and important role in digestion by secreting bile, for this reason, it’s important to keep it clear and strong. Safflower can also help eliminate crystallized shards of acidity caused by uric acid. This type of acidity is what causes painful attacks of gout.
Disclaimer: Our services and information do not diagnose or prescribe for disease conditions. Individuals are encouraged to seek competent medical help when those services may be indicated. Individuals accept total responsibility for their own health care and maintenance.