Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) will cause a burning feeling in the chest due to rising stomach acid. These symptoms can recur if you eat foods that trigger an increase in stomach acid. For this reason, people with GERD need to apply a specific diet or diet to control symptoms.
Recommended diet menu for people with GERD
The proper treatment for GERD can be started by consulting a doctor so that treatment can be tailored to your condition.
Chronic acid reflux doesn’t get better on its own. While GERD medications can provide short-term symptom relief, they cannot wholly cure GERD.
food for GERD or diet is the key to treating GERD or acid reflux in the long term.
Recommended foods in the diet for people with GERD
- Vegetables and fruit
The National Institutes of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases explains that one of the symptoms of GERD is the rise of stomach acid that touches the esophagus and causes irritation and pain.
Therefore, you need to choose foods that are not too acidic not to trigger stomach acid to rise. Choose fruits such as bananas, melons, apples, and pears.
Fruits that are too acidic or citrus will trigger the production of more stomach acid.
Vegetables low in fat and sugar are also suitable for people with GERD. Vegetable choices for people with a GERD diet are green beans, broccoli, asparagus, cauliflower, green vegetables, potatoes, and cucumbers.
Avoid or reduce the use of sauces or dressings high in fat, such as mayonnaise, on the vegetables you eat.
- Low-fat protein
High-fat and fried foods slow stomach emptying and encourage the stomach to produce excess stomach acid. This can trigger the onset of GERD.
We recommend that you eat low-fat meats such as chicken, turkey, fish, and seafood.
Instead of frying, grilling, or boiling meat, it is better to reduce fat intake.
You can also choose eggs as an alternative to high-protein foods. But remember, avoid consuming egg yolks which are higher in fat.
- Healthy fats
You need to avoid or reduce saturated fats, such as red meat and trans fats, which are processed fats usually found in margarine and packaged foods.
However, you still have to get a balanced nutritious diet every day, so it is necessary to have sufficient fat intake.
So, how good is it if the consumption of fatty foods triggers the recurrence of GERD symptoms?
In applying a diet for people with GERD, try to reduce the portion of intake high in saturated fat. You can also replace them with sources of unsaturated fats or healthy fats.
Here are some examples of foods with unsaturated fats or healthy fats
- Olive oil, sesame oil, canola oil, and sunflower oil.
- Food sources of unsaturated fats such as avocados, peanuts, nuts, and seeds.
- Processed foods from soy, such as soy milk, tempeh, and tofu.
- Fish with healthy fats such as tilapia, snapper, milkfish, or tuna contain omega-3 fats.
Ginger is rich in antioxidants (which prevent cell damage), chemicals that can provide some benefits, and a good diet for people with GERD.
A review published in Cancer Prevention Research (2011) explains that ginger’s phenolic compounds can relieve digestive system irritation and reduce gastric contractions.
This means that ginger can reduce inflammation in the stomach and the possibility of acid flowing from the stomach back into the esophagus.
So, including ginger in the diet menu is very beneficial for people with GERD to prevent the recurrence of symptoms.
Foods in the diet for people with GERD
The trigger for the increase in stomach acid often comes from the food and drinks that are consumed daily.
- High-fat foods
One of the dietary restrictions for people with GERD is foods that contain a lot of fat.
High-fat foods will stimulate the release of cholecystokinin. Cholecystokinin is a hormone that triggers the relaxation of the esophageal valve so that stomach acid can rise.
Therefore, restrictions for people with GERD diet are limited to high-fat foods..
It would help if you avoid caffeine or limit the amount intake to prevent GERD symptoms from worsening.
Some studies report that caffeine weakens the lower esophageal valve muscle.
As a result, stomach acid can back into the esophagus and trigger symptoms of bothersome GERD.
Drinking alcohol puts you at higher risk for adverse health problems, including GERD.
Showed that alcohol consumption can increase GERD symptoms, cause damage to the lining of the esophagus, and irritate the lining of the stomach.