What is Heartburn?
Heartburn is caused by a regurgitation of acid, pepsin and other stomach contents into the esophagus, and creates a burning sensation that is incredibly uncomfortable. Though this uncomfortable feeling is often annoying and painful, frequent cases of heartburn can lead to more serious conditions, including acid reflux and damage to the esophagus.
How Can I Tell If I Have Heartburn?
Heartburn is primarily characterized by a burning sensation in the chest, and can spread into the throat, arms, jaw or back. Most people experience heartburn anywhere from thirty to sixty minutes after eating a large meal, and also experience more pain when sitting and lying down as opposed to when standing. Other symptoms of heartburn include nausea and the taste of acid or vomit within one’s mouth.
How Can I Get Heartburn Relief?
1. Eat Garlic – Although you’ll have to brush your teeth afterwards, chewing a clove of garlic when you experience heartburn eases the pain and acts as a natural antibiotic. However, garlic can impact the effect of prescription drugs, so check with your doctor before eating excessive amounts.
2. Eat Papaya – If you experience heartburn often, try eating a slice of fresh or dried papaya before your meal or as soon as symptoms begin to occur. The papaya, a tropical fruit with can be found at your local grocery market provides effective relief because it contains an enzyme that aids digestion called papain.
3. Drink Vegetable Juice – The alkaline nature of several vegetables helps to ease the acid within the stomach. The juices of carrots, cucumbers, radishes and beets are all excellent sources for heartburn relief.
4. Baking Soda – Baking soda, when added to water and lemon juice, can help to neutralize the acid within your stomach, and relieve heartburn pain. It is extremely important not to consume baking soda by itself, as it needs to first be mixed with the citric acid of lemon juice to dispel the gas that forms as a result of the acid base neutralization, which will occur in your stomach.
5. Eat Almonds – By eating a small handful of almonds after having heartburn symptoms, the oil in the almonds will also neutralize your irritating stomach acids.
There are several other options to relieve heartburn, as several medications such as ibuprofen and Tums will easily relieve any heartburn symptoms you might have. If your heartburn persists, do not hesitate to contact a medical professional, because you may have acid reflux.