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acid reflux



The Morning-After Pill for Your Food Baby is Available OTC

Food baby is the cutesy term for your feeling and appearance after overeating. Whether your baby was conceived due to gas or while binging at the buffet, the result is the same: a bloated stomach that makes you appear pregnant.

pain from bloating

As most of us can attest, this bloating experience is uncomfortable and can last for quite a while. If you’re facing this phenomenon, the best thing you can do is treat it as soon as possible. And know that relief comes sooner than nine months!

Shape Magazine reports today a few things we didn’t know about our bundles of food baby joy. For one, there’s a morning-after pill of sorts for your food baby, although they recommend not waiting that long. Using an over-the-counter antacid may help relieve your food baby symptoms almost immediately. Acid reflux is one of the main side effects from overeating, and popping a Mylanta or Zantac will help neutralize any extra acid your body is producing.


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Coffee and Alcohol May Increase Heartburn

If you’ve ever experienced heartburn and were left stumped as to what the cause was, perhaps you should turn your gaze toward the bottom of your cup – your coffee cup, that is.

Experts from the University of California, Los Angeles, are suggesting that alcohol and caffeinated beverages can have a direct effect on heartburn. This is because a ring of muscle located between the stomach and esophagus called the “lower esophageal sphincter” can be temporarily affected by alcohol and caffeine in some people.

As reported by NPR, UCLA gastroenterologist Kevin Ghassemi, explained that this muscle is meant to be closed at all times except for when food is passing into the esophagus. But because alcohol relaxes it, it creates an opening. And when this happens, he says, stomach acid can come back up into the esophagus, which is reflux – which is what causes the burning sensation we experience with heartburn.

Furthermore, Ghassemi makes the link to caffeine as well saying, “The caffeine that’s in coffee or other caffeinated beverages also will relax the sphincter muscle.”

If you’re one of the lucky few who doesn’t experience heartburn after consuming caffeine or alcohol, consider yourself normal. Ghassemi points out that some people are naturally predisposed due to a “weak or faulty sphincter muscle.” This, he says, can often be influenced by being overweight or obese because it increases the risk.
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Common Myths About Acid Reflux

medicines for heartburnSince the beginning of the year, I have been undergoing treatment for heartburn. Over the course of this time, I’ve spoken with many people about my condition. Some are simply curious about this process, some have suffered from the condition themselves and others want to offer advice. In fact, many people are convinced they know of the best way to treat my heartburn. Unfortunately, not all health advice is created equal, so I’ll be sticking to the recommendations made by my doctor, Jamie Koufman. Below is a list of some of the myths and misconceptions I’ve encountered most frequently.

Myth #1: Apple Cider Vinegar Can Cure Your Reflux

Apple cider vinegar has been proclaimed as a miracle cure-all for a number of conditions. I won’t go into it’s dubious use as a weight-loss supplement here, but I will discuss how it affects acid reflux.

There are a number of different theories behind why taking a table spoon or two of apple cider vinegar before a meal will prevent reflux. One theory suggests that it can balance your blood’s pH. One theory is that it causes the sphincter to tighten. Another theory claims that if you drink apple cider vinegar before a meal, it will trigger to your body to know that it has “enough” acid and will cut off further acid production.

None of these theories are particularly well grounded in biology or science. “There’s no doctor that I know of that advocates apple cider vinegar,” says Dr. Jamie Koufman, one of the foremost experts in clinical otolaryngology and the author of Dropping Acid. Apple cider vinegar is in fact, very acidic. Consuming something acidic is likely to make reflux worse. “You would think if there was really something behind it, someone would have studied it,” adds Dr. Koufman.


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The Best Drinks for Acid Reflux

Two cups of tea in clear cupsThere’s a long list of things you shouldn’t drink if you suffer from acid reflux or heartburn: orange juice, hot chocolate, carbonated beverages, lemonade, anything with mint and any bottled drinks with added acid. Water is really the best thing for people with reflux to drink, along with low-fat milk.

You may know that I have been undergoing treatment for acid reflux for about two months, under the supervision of Dr. Jamie Koufman at The Voice Institute of New York. Dr. Koufman is one of the authors of Dropping Acid: The Reflux Diet Cookbook & Cure. I’m a big lover of tea, and I was happy to hear that there are still several varieties of teas that don’t trigger acid reflux. Some doctors might recommend that patients stay away from caffeine altogether, but Dr. Koufman says that a cup of tea (black, green or white) or coffee with milk per day is fine. It’s the people who drink “a fishbowl” of coffee each day who have a problem. Herbal teas like chamomile and rooibos are good, but any fruit-infused teas will be too acidic.


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Navigating the Grocery Store with Acid Reflux

Man and Woman buying groceriesI have been undergoing treatment for acid reflux for about two months, with the guidance of Dr. Jamie Koufman, one of the authors of Dropping Acid: The Reflux Diet Cookbook & Cure. Like many people who suffer from heartburn, I had a pretty clear idea of my worst trigger foods before seeking medical attention. Coffee, citrus, alcohol and tomato sauce all had me reaching for the Tums.

What I learned from Dr. Koufman is that acid as a food additive is also a contributor to reflux. Acid is added to foods because it prevents the growth of bacteria, but few consumers are aware of the potentially negative consequences of this practice. Things containing ascorbic acid, citric acid, and acetic acid should all be avoided by people suffering from reflux. You should also look out for foods and beverages that are “vitamin C enriched” or “vitamin C enhanced,” which is usually done through the addition of citric acid.


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