person suffering from GERD

15 Natural Remedies for GERD that Will Really Make You Feel Better

Those who suffer from the pain and burning of chronic acid reflux, indigestion and heartburn are rarely know or care that their condition is known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). In most cases, finding instant relief is a short-lived solution to a long term problem. We’re about explore 15 natural remedies for GERD that will really make you feel better. First, what causes GERD?

GERD is a digestive disorder that affects the lower esophageal sphincter (LES), which is a ring of muscle connecting the esophagus to the stomach. When functioning normally, the LES opens to allow food to pass into the stomach and then closes to prevent it and stomach acid from splashing up into the esophagus. GERD is when the LES is weak or relaxes at an inappropriate time allowing stomach acid back up into the esophagus.

Hiatal hernia plays a role in causing GERD due to the fact that the diaphragm helps to support the lower end of the esophagus and the LES. Without that support, the LES doesn’t function properly. Additional causes of GERD include:

  • Obesity;
  • Smoking;
  • Alcohol;
  • Coffee;
  • Chocolate;
  • Fried foods;
  • Carbonated drinks.

Most over-the-counter and prescribed medications to relieve GERD, especially acid pump inhibitors, have a list of long-term, potential side effects to go along with them. These 15 natural remedies for GERD can help you get relief that goes beyond instant soothing and actually helps heal the problem, but they are not all inclusive. In severe cases, it is still best to consult a health care professional.

Unexpected GERD Symptoms

There are tons of symptoms that may occur when you have GERD, but the worst are the ones that are not obvious. 

A Hoarse Voice

A hoarse voice will make you think you yelled too much at a concert, strained your vocal chords, or are simply getting a cold soon. You may not think anything of it, but you should keep an eye out for the reflux you’ve gotten as well as the foods you’ve eaten and how the two may correlate. You won’t know if the natural remedies work unless you can pick up when the symptoms are there!

Terrible Chest Pain

I will never forget the time my husband woke up in a cold sweat and could not handle how bad his chest hurt. He thought he was having a heart attack, but this would not be a  normal thing for a healthy 23 year old. This led him to the conclusion he was not okay. After getting checked out by the doctor and realizing his heart was just fine, his doctor suggested he may have acid reflex and after going through all the factors that cause this, it was concluded that this was a correct diagnosis!

Swallowing Problems

Do you have a hard time gulping and getting liquids and food to go down? Not a pain, but some kind of blockage you cannot explain? This would make sense because you must remember, acid reflux is actual bodily acid. The acid will burn your throat over time and the constant healing and burning will create layers of scars. 

Random Coughing 

It’s kind of bizarre that a symptom like coughing unexpectedly can be caused by acid reflux, but if you struggle with GERD, then this symptom can easily be part of your predicament. This is a more serious one because it means there is acid getting into your lungs and causing this issue. This should be taken to a doctor and tested as soon as possible. If you make this connection, go to the doctor and get tested. 

Restful Discomfort

The worst kind of pain is the pain that hurts even when you are in a restful state. When laying down, you may experience the worst pain and that means you will truly not be able to rest at all! 

Bitter Juices 

Do you taste a disgusting bitterness? This is the leaking stomach acid traveling up your throat and into your mouth. This can be harmful as if you are laying down, you could choke. There is nothing scarier than waking up choking, except maybe heartburn! 

Asthma

Did you have childhood asthma that came back as an adult? Do you suffer from GERD? Well the two may be linked. I will never forget the day my mother told me they would give her a breather back because now, after kicking asthma as a young girl, it was back again. Heartburn can actually act as a trigger for asthma! How crazy is this? The two very well may be linked.

15 Natural Remedies for GERD that Will Really Make You Feel Better

Change Lifestyle Habits

Ultimately, the difference between using natural remedies for GERD to reduce symptoms or to cure the condition will depend on your willingness to make some more permanent lifestyle changes.

What to do:

  • Stop smoking;
  • Reduce alcohol consumption;
  • Maintain a healthy weight;
  • Practice better portion control;
  • Eat and chew more slowly;
  • Avoid eating for 3 to 4 hours before bedtime.

How it works:
By reducing or avoiding the lifestyle behaviors that tend to encourage GERD, you can actually reverse its effects and prevent it from coming back.

woman eating

Avoid Processed Foods and Trigger Foods

Processed foods and trigger foods have a tendency to cause or make the symptoms worse, thus one of the most natural remedies for GERD is to avoid those foods.

What to do:

  • Recognize your trigger foods and avoid them.
  • Reduce your consumption of caffeine and carbonated drinks.
  • Eliminated processed foods.
  • Eliminated artificially sweetened foods and drinks.

How it works:
Many of the chemicals in processed foods and artificial sweeteners are major contributors to GERD, avoiding them along with foods that you know to trigger your symptoms will help bring you lasting relief.

Probiotic Foods

Probiotic foods are an essential element to the natural remedies for GERD.

What to do:

  • Consume more fermented vegetables on a regular basis.
  • Add Greek style yogurt, kefir and sour cream to your diet.

How it works:
Restoring the proper balance of digestive juices can help reduce the production of acid and maintain a more alkaline state.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is one of the best natural remedies for GERD that will really make you feel better.

What to do:

  • Choose raw, filtered apple cider vinegar.
  • Add 3 tsp to 1 Tbsp of apple cider vinegar into 8 to 10 ounces of water.
  • Drink this mixture before each meal and before bedtime.

How it works:
Apple cider vinegar helps to balance out the acid levels in your stomach.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is one of the best natural remedies for GERD in an emergency situation.

What to do:

  • Mix ½ tsp to 1 tsp of baking soda in an 8 oz. glass of water.
  • Drink the remedy to gain instant relief for discomfort.
  • This is not advised as a regular, daily solution.

How it works:
Baking soda helps neutralize stomach acid and soothes the burning of acid reflux.

Magnesium

Boosting your magnesium intake is another of the natural remedies for GERD that can make a huge difference.

What to do:

  • Eating more salmon, halibut, cod and other cold water fish.
  • Consume magnesium rich foods.
  • Or take 200 to 400 mg magnesium supplement daily.

How it works:
Magnesium deficiency is one of the many causes of LES dysfunction.

Vitamin D

Another of the natural remedies for GERD is vitamin D.

What to do:

  • Increase your exposure to sunlight.
  • Take a vitamin D3 supplement at a dosage of 1000 IU daily.

How it works:
If there are infectious elements associated with GERD, vitamin D can help reduce and eliminate their effects.

Aloe Vera

To get the same soothing relief that aloe vera gives for bites, stings and burns, utilize it as one of the natural remedies for GERD.

What to do:

  • Drink ½ cup of aloe vera juice before meals and before bedtime.
  • Be aware that aloe vera juice has a laxative component, but can be bought with that component removed.

How it works:
Aloe vera is known for its soothing anti-inflammatory properties, but it also contains vital minerals that can help heal GERD.

aloe vera plant

Chewing Gum

Believe it or not, chewing gum is another of the natural remedies for GERD that should be considered.

What to do:

  • Chew sugarless gum to relieve flare-ups of acid reflux.
  • For better results chew xylitol gum.

How it works:
Chewing gum helps produce saliva that will help balance out your stomach acid. The added benefit of xylitol gum is that it helps eliminate candida and bad bacteria in your mouth.

Coconut Oil

One of the natural remedies for GERD that has a number of lasting effects is coconut oil.

What to do:

  • You can drink a carbonated soft drink with lemon to help ease nausea.
  • For a sugarless or low sugar approach, keep natural lemonade or limeade on hand to sip throughout the day.
  • You can put 1 tsp of lemon juice and 1 Tbsp of honey in hot water to sip as well.

How it works:
Medium chain fatty acids (MFCA’s) in coconut oil do several things: they help with portion control by making you feel full sooner, it reduces candida and bacteria that add to acidic state, it is alkaline in nature and neutralizes acids, and coats the esophagus and digestive tract.

Vitamin B

Vitamin B, especially folate or folic acid, is one more of the natural remedies for GERD.

What to do:

  • Consider taking a vitamin B supplement on a daily basis.
  • Concentrate on foods high in vitamin B and folate.

How it works:
Research shows that Vitamin B deficiency makes a person much more susceptible to GERD.

Ginger

Ginger is well known as a stomach soother. It is also one of our natural remedies for GERD.

What to do:

  • Boil a cup of water and then add 2 Tbsp of grated ginger.
  • Continue to simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Strain out the ginger, add honey to taste.
  • Sip this soothing tea to help relieve acid reflux.

How it works:
The gingerols and shogaols found in ginger are proven to eliminate bacteria that contribute to GERD and are good in aiding digestion.

Banana

An apple a day might keep the doctor away, but a banana a day is another of our natural remedies for GERD.

What to do:

  • Purchase organic bananas that are unripe or just on the edge of becoming ripe.
  • Eat a banana 2 to 3 hours before bedtime.
  • Take 200 mg banana powder supplement.

How it works:
Bananas coat the mucosal walls of the esophagus as well as help to balance out stomach acid.

Fennel

One of the natural remedies for GERD that you might appeal to you if you like licorice is fennel.

What to do:

  • Chew on ½ tsp of fennel seeds after meals.
  • Or add 1 tsp of crushed fennel seeds to 1 cup of boiling water.
  • Steep the tea for 3 minutes, strain out the seeds and sip to sooth acid reflux.

How it works:
Fennel seeds have anethole as one of their active ingredients. Anethole is known to suppress gastrointestinal tract spasms that contribute to acid reflux.

Almonds

Almonds are another of our tasty natural remedies for GERD.

What to do:

  • Eat 3 to 4 almonds after every meal.
  • Snack on almonds in place of trigger food snacks.

How it works:
Almonds help neutralize stomach acid.

Note: Don’t go too crazy, because almonds sometimes trigger migraines.

almonds small cup

A Final Thought

GERD doesn’t have to be allowed to make you suffer. Using these 15 natural remedies for GERD that will really make you feel better can get rid of the burning and pain of reflux and even keep it away. If you will focus on the necessary lifestyle changes to heal it forever, you can be symptom free, until you reach that point, there are many ways to sooth that burning without reaching into the medicine cabinet.

Images taken from depositphotos.com and pixabay.com.

Tyler Moore

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