Also known as Gastroesophogeal Reflux Disease (GERD), affects 20 percent of the U.S. population at least once a week. Eating the wrong foods and excessive emotional stress in the form of frustration and anger typically cause acid reflux.
The Stomach naturally desires warm foods such as soups, tea, steamed vegetables, etc. Foods with a warm essence like ginger, cinnamon, fennel are helpful in healing acid reflux.
The stomach becomes unbalanced if fed a steady diet of raw and cold foods (ice water, cold sodas, ice cream, cold salads). Too much fried food, spicy food, dairy products and alcohol in the diet can also cause or aggravate. Avoid coffee and aspirin products until your stomach heals and then use them in limited amounts.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is another acid that becomes alkaline in the stomach, and helps sooth stomach hyperacidity. Add 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar to 4 oz water. Sip with a meal.
Papaya contains natural enzymes which contributes digestion of protein in the stomach, making your stomach produces less acids to break down foods. Taking them in slices after every meal is best. Taking them in juices is also a good idea.
It has glutamine content, popular as an all time favorite among NativeAmericans and European rural folks to provide natural cure for acid reflux.
Although lemon juice is acidic, it becomes alkaline in the stomach to balance pH and relieve acid indigestion and heartburn. Add 1 teaspoon lemon juice to 4 oz water. Sip with a meal.
Helps reduce bloating and raise alkalinity in the stomach.
Marshmallow Leaf and Root
This herb does not stop the symptoms of acid reflux, but it can help to make symptoms less painful. This herb works well when your throat is irritated and you are feeling the pains of heartburn. Marshmallow herb counteracts them and makes them less of a problem.
One of the most ideal herbs for acids reflux as it contains soothing properties that contributes in reducing inflammation and irritation in the body. Licorice root helps in improving digestive function and can also reduces stress as well. It is believed that licorice acts like an antacids but much more safer.
Encourages the stomach to digest food and simultaneously soothes any irritations. The latter can be of great benefit if you are suffering from stress, which is known to trigger acid reflux. With chamomile, your tension is less likely to bring on the symptoms. Note: if you have allergies to any plant in the daisy family, you should not take chamomile
Catnip is a member of the mint family. It has been used in herbal medicine for centuries to soothe overactive stomach acids and prevent heartburn.
Fennel is relaxing to the smooth muscles of the digestive organs. It reduces spasmodic actions in the gastrointestinal tract. This can help relieve the reflux of food and acid back into the esophagus. Fennel comes in capsule form, but is also very helpful when purchased as seeds and consumed alone or with food. Drinking fennel tea can also provide relief.
Ginger has a soothing effect on the stomach, which is why it is used so often for digestive concerns. Because it can absorb the acid in the stomach, it is an especially useful herb for acid reflux sufferers. Be careful with its use, however, because too much at one time can actually worsen indigestion. Start with small amounts in whole form with your food. Generally, you should not consume more than 4g daily. Drinking ginger tea with your meals may also quell the symptoms of related reflux.
This herb is helpful in coating the stomach lining to provide fast relief from acid indigestion in the stomach. It neutralizes excess stomach acid, while the mucilage content of the herb helps relieve the irritation and inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract. It can be consumed as a tea or taken in capsule form. This herb is generally regarded as safe, but may inhibit absorption of drugs taken at the same time. Taking prescription medications separately from slippery elm will eliminate this risk.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
Liver energy naturally rises and flows outward. If these emotions are excessively intense or held chronically over a long period of time, because of the Liver’s close energy connection with the Stomach, its excess energy can be conveyed to the Stomach, causing a reverse in the flow of the Stomach’s energy. Stomach Qi naturally flows downward, yet too much emotion can cause it to move upward, which can result in the uncomfortable symptoms of GERD.
To alleviate a Liver dysfunction, it’s important to find healthy ways to experience this organ’s strong emotions and then let them go. It is much better to release anger, stress and frustration rather than internalize their injurious effects.
Two classical herbal formulas—Ban Xia Xie Xin Wan and Xiao Yao Wan—can help alleviate acid reflux while avoiding the side effects of drugs.
Lemon Barley Tea
Cut a lemon into quarters and place in a saucepan. Add three cups water and one-third cup of rinsed barley. Bring to a boil, and simmer for ten minutes. If desired, add honey or a tablespoon fresh grated ginger root. Both are effective against heartburn and stomach acid. Strain and drink hot or cold.
To relieve heartburn and acid reflux, make catnip tea by pouring just-boiled water over a handful of dried or fresh catnip leaves. Steep five to ten minutes. Add honey or lemon if desired.
Avoid anti-acid medications. Using them for an extended period reduces stomach acid making it difficult to optimally digest food and you become nutritionally deficient. This makes it even harder for your stomach to make the mucous lining it needs to protect itself and can set you up for even more reflux. Due to the lack of stomach acid when you take anti-acid meds, your body makes huge amounts of a hormone that stimulates stomach acid. So, as soon as you stop your antacids, the stomach makes massive amounts of acid– which it cannot protect against. In essence, you become addicted to the antacids.