Heartburn and indigestion make millions of people miserable. Continuous digestive problems can be a symptom of overeating, bad food choices or something more serious. Thankfully simple changes in the foods you eat can provide relief.
A number of foods can trigger heartburn or indigestion by relaxing the band of muscles at the end of your esophagus so it can't keep out stomach acid. By avoiding spicy foods with black pepper or chili powder, garlic and raw onions, citrus foods like tomatoes, oranges, and grapefruit, fried or fatty foods, alcohol or anything with caffeine such as coffee, tea, soft drinks, heartburn and indigestion can be greatly lessened or avoided.
For overall healthy digestion and to minimize acid reflux, make sure you get plenty of fiber from a variety of vegetables, non-citrus fruits, and whole grains. Drink enough fluids to help your body absorb important nutrients and lubricate food waste, and use low-fat methods when cooking. Try drinking herbal chamomile tea after dinner or before bedtime, as it’s believed to have a calming effect on the stomach. Smaller but more frequent meals can also help decrease heartburn and indigestion episodes. Be sure to eat your meals and snacks in a calm, relaxed atmosphere where there’s little if any noise or distractions. Wear properly fitting clothing that isn’t tight in the waist and abdominal area, and don’t lie down immediately after eating a meal.
Make your morning meal oatmeal. It’s high in fiber, low in saturated fat and cholesterol and when combined with skim milk, gives you a calcium-charged boost to your day. By adding berries or raisins you’ll be adding some extra iron and potassium into the mix for a well-balanced meal.
You can't beat turkey if you want a lean, nutrient-packed protein source that'll be easy on your stomach. Turkey is high in niacin, which helps lower cholesterol levels in the blood. Chicken without the skin is also a terrific low-fat source of protein. Both are easy to cook either indoors or out.
Apples and grapes are low in saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium, and are a great non-citrus fruit choice for vitamin C and fiber.
Mr. LaPointe is Director of Health and Fruit Education at Traverse Bay Farms. He is the author of several books including The Superfruit Handbook, Blueberry Health Report and How to Get a More Restful Night's Sleep Naturally. He has been a guest on numerous radio shows across the nation discussing the natural health benefits of superfoods and superfruits. You can contact Mr. LaPointe from www.TraverseBayFarms.com