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How to treat Acid Reflux?

Have you ever felt an uncomfortable burning sensation in your throat or chest that kept you awake at night? Almost everyone experiences such occasional heartburn or acid reflux symptoms. For many people, all it takes is drinking a cup of extra tea, skipping breakfast or going to bed on a very full stomach. While occasional heartburn is not something to worry about but if you are experiencing acid reflux symptoms like heartburn or chest pain more than twice a week, you may have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

Typically, acid reflux symptoms are treated with over-the-counter antacids. If you are someone who carries a strip of antacids to treat your acid reflux symptoms, please keep in mind that antacids only suppress the stomach acid either by neutralizing it or by inhibiting the acid production in the stomach and don’t treat the inflammation caused by acid reflux/ GERD. When the esophagus is left inflamed over time, it can erode the lining, or, rarely, develop ulcers in the stomach or cancer. This is why it’s important to not self-treat acid reflux symptoms with over-the-counter medications. While a doctor might give the go-ahead to use antacids, this type of medication is only a temporary solution.

So if antacids aren’t the solution for treating acid reflux symptoms, what is? A combination of the right foods, healthy lifestyle and Ayurvedic natural remedies can heal the problem right from the root to give you a safe and long-term solution. Here’s how –

Safe and Natural Ayurvedic Treatment for Acid Reflux

Before understanding about Ayurvedic treatment approach for acid reflux symptoms, let us first understand ‘why does it occur?’

Acid reflux is a condition in which the liquid content of the stomach regurgitates (backs up or refluxes) into the esophagus and stomach becomes weak. According to Ayurveda, acid reflux occurs when an individual has an imbalance of Pitta dosha (heat or fire element). Aggravated Pitta leads to an increase of acidic content in stomach fluids, which then refluxes, back upwards to the esophagus and cause acid reflux symptoms like heartburn, chest pain, pain while swallowing, sour belching, nausea, and chronic dry cough that worsens at night.

In our modern lifestyle and diet pattern, there are many factors that increases Pitta dosha such as consuming hot, spicy, fried, oily and greasy foods, skipping breakfast, irregular eating pattern, going to sleep soon after taking heavy meals, drinking too much tea, coffee or alcohol, smoking, and increased intake of painkillers and antibiotics. Excessive thinking, anger, and stress can also create an imbalance of Pitta in your body.

Ayurveda treatment begins with first identifying the underlying cause behind acid reflux for each individual and then offers a personalised treatment plan that is tailor-made to your unique body system. Ayurveda focuses on balancing your vitiated doshas by suggesting natural remedies and medicines, a natural diet plan and several lifestyle recommendations that eradicate the problem from the root. As a result, Ayurveda not only sets you free from the acid reflux symptoms but also strengthens your digestive power and improves the overall quality of life.

Here are a few natural remedies that you can follow to get rid of acid reflux symptoms:

  • Make a powdered mixture of equal parts of rock candy (mishri), fennel, and green cardamom. Whenever you feel the heartburn, mix 1 teaspoon of this mixture in a glass of cold milk and drink.
  • Mix equal parts of powdered fennel, licorice root, basil leaves, and coriander seeds. Have ½ teaspoon of this mixture with ½ teaspoon of powdered rock candy 15 minutes before lunch and dinner.
  • Fresh coconut or coconut water is one of the effective natural remedies to reduce
  • If you experience excessive heartburn and have nothing at the rescue, mix 20ml cold milk in ½ glass of water and drink to get instant relief.

Diet and lifestyle tips:

  • A very simple way to avoid heartburn or an increase of pitta in the stomach is to avoid overeating. Always leave a part of the stomach empty for the movement of food during digestion. Try to regulate your eating hours. Finish your meal at least two to three hours before bedtime.
  • Avoid foods known to trigger reflux exacerbation like garlic, tomatoes, chocolate, spicy foods.
  • Avoid tea, coffee, carbonated or alcoholic beverages.
  • Eat fresh and natural foods. Avoid preserved, canned, fermented and fast foods.
  • Don’t suppress natural urges such as passing urine, stool or flatus, sneezing, belching, yawning, and even crying. Suppression of such urges blocks the pitta in the stomach.
  • Reduce your stress levels by meditation, deep breathing exercises, regular exercising, spending time in nature or the activities you like doing. Yoga asana like Vajrasan and Agnisaar Pranayam are especially beneficial to reduce heartburn and acid reflux.

As you can see, there is no need to suffer from heartburn and acid reflux or to take acid-blocking drugs. Try the changes suggested here to soothe your stomach and have your gut engine humming in no time. If you feel your acid reflux symptoms are persistent and not getting better with natural remedies and lifestyle changes, please consult an Ayurvedic doctor for a safe, effective and root-cause based solution.

 

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