How can I relieve GERD without medication?

GERD, or gastroesophageal reflux disorder, happens when acid from your stomach moves up into your esophagus. Some people are really sensitive to even a tiny amount of acid. Making changes in how you sleep and when and what you eat can help prevent GERD. For example, sleeping with two pillows can help prevent nighttime GERD by keeping your head higher than your stomach. Also, do not eat at least two hours before you go to bed. Some foods, such as peppermint, alcohol and caffeine, may make reflux worse, so avoid them.

First, pay attention to what you eat when heartburn strikes, keeping a journal if necessary. Avoid smoking and foods that tend to trigger the condition, such as carbonated drinks, caffeine, alcohol, nicotine products (including gum), citrus juices, acidic foods, peppermint, chocolate and fried foods. Wear loose-fitting clothing to avoid pressure on your belly. Eat smaller, more frequent meals. Stop eating several hours before bedtime - and sleep with your upper body elevated. Gravity helps keep stomach acid at bay.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.