We often hear about foods that aggravate heartburn, but which foods are best for easing symptoms? For those who suffer from acid reflux, it can feel like the disorder takes all the fun out of eating. That does not have to be true, however. Breakfast, lunch and dinner can be both enjoyable and heartburn-friendly if you know which foods to incorporate into your diet.
Heartburn can flare when your stomach produces too much gastric acid, and your food choices can directly affect this. Here are three meals that incorporate heartburn-reducing foods that your stomach will appreciate.
Oatmeal and Wheat: Try Whole Grains for Breakfast
Oatmeal has been a whole-grain breakfast favorite for generations. It is a good source of fiber, so it keeps you feeling full and promotes regularity. Oats also absorb stomach acid and reduce symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). For something sweet, top your oatmeal with bananas, apples or pears. The fructose in these fruits is less likely to trigger acid reflux than other sugars. Of course, eating oatmeal every day could get boring, so switch things up with a warm bowl of Cream of Wheat, or some whole grain toast with peanut butter.
Avoid coffee and most teas that contain caffeine, which can cause heartburn. Instead, brew a soothing cup of ginger tea. Ginger has natural anti-inflammatory properties that will help regulate acid production.
Vegetables: Add Some Color and Nutrients to Your Lunch
Vegetables are low in fat and sugar, which makes them stomach-friendly and healthy. Foods that are high in sugar or fat can be difficult to digest and can spike acid production. Some veggies that reduce heartburn include cucumbers, leafy greens, broccoli, green beans, potatoes, asparagus and cauliflower.
Try these options for a light and tasty lunch:
- Baked potato with steamed broccoli
- Mixed green salad with fresh-cut vegetables and a light oil and vinegar dressing (apple cider vinegar is known to help control heartburn)
- Veggie wrap or veggie quesadilla
Lean Proteins and Healthy Fats: Accents to a Delectable Dinner
Lean proteins like legumes, beans, chicken, turkey, fish and seafood are low in fat and help regulate stomach acid production. Instead of using oil to pan fry or deep fry foods, use healthier cooking methods like grilling, poaching, roasting and baking. Avoid making meat the main component of your dinner. Instead, see it as an accent or an accompaniment to a bed of greens, roasted vegetables, brown rice or fresh fruit.
Not all fats are unhealthy, so indulge in the good fats contained in nuts, seeds, avocados and olive oil. You can reduce your saturated and trans fat intake by substituting healthy monounsaturated fats (source: Health Line).
Remember that one of the best ways to control heartburn is to make thoughtful and healthy food choices. These options for reducing symptoms should provide some ideas and encouragement for your journey to find heartburn relief.