What is Heartburn?
Heartburn is an uncomfortable burning feeling in your chest. It usually happens after eating in the evening, or when you lie down or bend over. Commonly, it is called acid reflux. This problem is something many adults face.
Acid reflux is usually caused when the contents of food that you just ate come back up to the esophagus. The esophagus is the route via which food goes to the stomach. It closes when the food enters the stomach with the juncture called a cardiac sphincter. Acid reflux is the result when the esophagus is irritated by acids of the stomach causing the cardiac sphincter to weaken.
Why does Heartburn worsen in some people?
Certain lifestyle choices including habits related to diets can worsen heartburn. Most of them are listed below:
- Being Overweight
- Consuming an excessive amount of caffeine, tea, and alcohol
- Lying down immediately after eating
- Eating heavy, oily, and spicy meals
- Not exercising
- Stress and anxiety
- Certain Medications
However, simple lifestyle choices can help in improving the condition of Heartburn. Some habits that you can inculcate in your life for reducing heartburn are listed below.
Lifestyle Tips to Reduce Heartburn
- Chew Well and Eat Slowly: Chewing well makes it easier for the stomach to further break down food. Therefore, one should eat slowly and chew well.
- Do not Overeat: Nutritionists say that portion control is one of the best habits one can adopt. Eat till 80% of your stomach is full.
- Have dinner at least 3 hours prior to going to bed: Eating an early dinner gives time to your body to digest food. It also provides you with increased energy levels.
- If you are overweight, try to lose weight: People who are overweight
- Avoid drinking alcohol: Alcohol relaxes the muscles around the stomach. As a result, it makes it more likely for the contents to leak out to the esophagus. It also makes the stomach produce more acid.
- Try exercising, meditation, or deep breathing: Stress and anxiety worsen heartburn. Therefore, to manage stress it is advisable to take a walk, meditate, and have deep breathing.
- Drink lots of water: Staying hydrated improves the functioning of the body.
- Antacids for instant relief : Medicines available Over the counter can be used. But if your symptoms persist for more than 2 weeks, it is advisable to see a doctor.
According to scientists, the major underlying reason behind Heartburn is dietary factors. Therefore, it is important to adopt healthy lifestyle choices and have a timely balanced meal. Acid reflux can be easily treated at home.