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Natural Ways to Treat Acid Reflux

Natural Ways to Treat Acid Reflux

If you frequently experience acid reflux, an otherwise enjoyable meal can quickly go sour once you begin to experience burning sensations and pressure in your chest.

Acid reflux is what occurs when a weakened sphincter in your esophagus doesn’t close all the way and acidic stomach contents back up through it. However, just because you’re prone to acid reflux doesn’t mean you have to suffer every time you sit down to eat. Many natural lifestyle adjustments will help you digest in peace.

Eliminate Risky Foods

Some foods can increase your risk of experiencing acid reflux. These foods typically trigger heartburn either by increasing your stomach’s production of acid or by irritating your esophagus which could possibly result in what’s largely known as Esophagitis.

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Foods that commonly exacerbate acid reflux are fried foods, fatty foods, mint, chocolate, onion, garlic, spicy foods, and tomato sauce. Beverages can also make your acid reflux worse. Common beverage culprits are those that contain alcohol, caffeine, citrus, carbonation, and tomato juice. You may find through the process of elimination that some or all of these trigger foods make your acid reflux worse.

You may also discover other foods to be behind this condition. Your best bet is to eliminate them from your diet, or at least cut back on them significantly. Instead, emphasize non-fried sources of protein such as certified organic fish, lean poultry and alkaline foods such as bananas, broccoli, and melon. Non-mint herbal teas, skim milk and alkaline water known for its many scientifically proven health benefits should be your go-to beverages.

Befriend Fiber

Eat more organically grown high-fiber foods to help improve your digestion and lower your chances of getting heartburn with meals. For example, soluble fiber- found in foods such as oats, barley, and beans – is thought to help lower the amount of acid your stomach produces.

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Insoluble fiber – found in foods such as wheat bran, nuts, and many vegetables – helps food move through your intestines at a more expedient pace. Many foods that are high in fiber also happen to be low in fat. Fatty foods exacerbate acid reflux directly, but they also happen to be high in calories and contribute to weight gain. Being overweight or obese increases your risk of acid reflux because the extra weight places pressure on your stomach and causes its acidic contents to back up.

Embrace Soothing Ingredients

Some foods are known to help soothe your stomach and promote healthy digestion. Ginger is one of them, as it has anti-inflammatory properties and helps foods pass out of the stomach at a smooth pace. Pell, slice, or shave ginger root and add it to your meals or smoothies. Other known stomach-soothing ingredients are parsely, aloe vera, and fennel.

Adopt Other Helpful Habits

Reducing acid reflux isn’t just about changing what you eat. Reducing acid reflux means adapting how you eat and making consciously other lifestyle adjustments. For example, you may need to get more exercise to lose some weight. If your wardrobe mostly consists of tight and restrictive clothing, consider investing in looser garments that won’t compress your abdomen.

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You should also carefully plan out your meals. Eating small and frequent meals and avoiding lying down for a few hours after you eat can help reduce acid reflux. Once you’re ready to lie down for the night, it helps to sleep on a bed that has blocks raising the head about 7 inches.

Also, if you smoke, now is the time to quit. Smoking makes acid reflux worse by slowing down digestion, by leading your stomach to produce more acid, by making your stomach acid more damaging, and by relaxing your lower esophageal sphincter.

Try Complementary and Alternative Treatments

Sometimes anxiety and stress make acid reflux worse. Complementary and alternative remedies may help reduce acid reflux that’s been exacerbated by emotional distress.

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Hypnosis, yoga, massage therapy, guided imagery, and aromatherapy are a few possible solutions to chronic stress and anxiety. Keep in mind, however, that serious distress caused by anxiety and depression may require further medical intervention.

Featured photo credit: pixabay via cdn.pixabay.com

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Last Updated on August 12, 2019

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory and brain power:

1. Nuts

The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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2. Blueberries

Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

3. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

4. Broccoli

While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

6. Soy

Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

7. Dark Chocolate

When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate: 15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

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Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

9. Foods Rich in Zinc

Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

10. Gingko Biloba

This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

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However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

11. Green and Black Tea

Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

Find out more about green tea here: 11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

12. Sage and Rosemary

Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

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Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

Reference

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