Acid reflux can cause a burning sensation in the throat and chest. Drinking water, low fat milk, and herbal teas may help manage it. Alcohol, caffeinated drinks, and sodas may worsen symptoms, however.
Acid reflux, or heartburn, occurs when stomach acid flows up into a person’s esophagus, or food pipe. It is common for people to experience acid reflux intermittently.
However, if a person consistently experiences acid reflux, they may have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
In this article, we cover the drinks that people can prioritize and avoid to reduce acid reflux symptoms.
Avoiding the drinks and foods that cause the symptoms is the best way to evade the effects of acid reflux. However, some drinks may help reduce acid reflux symptoms.
Ginger can help reduce symptoms of many gastrointestinal complaints, including:
- acid reflux
Studies show that ginger
In addition, ensuring a person’s stomach empties effectively can reduce the amount of stomach acid present in the upper digestive tract.
Drinking ginger tea can help a person get more ginger into their diet and provide a warm, soothing sensation. Ginger ale is less likely to help because of carbonation and because it sometimes contains caffeine. Most commercial ginger ale sodas also do not contain enough ginger to have a positive effect.
Learn more about the health benefits of ginger here.
Fruit and vegetable juices
Highly acidic fruit juices can irritate the mucus membrane of the food pipe. This can
However, low acid fruit and vegetables often contain natural compounds that may reduce acid reflux. Eating and drinking these fruits and vegetables
Good choices for juicing include:
- honeydew melon
Learn more about diets for GERD here.
Low fat milk
Foods and drinks with high fat content, such as whole milk, can
Some plant-based milks, such as
Learn more about the benefits of almond milk here.
Water can help with digestion and is integral to the proper working of the body. Staying adequately hydrated can ensure the proper passing of food through the gastrointestinal system, reducing the frequency of post-meal acid reflux.
Certain beverages pose a particularly high risk of triggering acid reflux. Managing the symptoms of acid reflux mainly involves learning and avoiding the triggers.
A 2018 research review found an association between the increase in alcohol consumption and frequency of drinking and GERD.
Alcohol damages mucus in the lining of the gastric system and impairs esophagus contractions. Both of these factors can increase acid reflux.
Learn more about alcohol and heartburn here.
Juices made from citrus fruits, like oranges or grapefruits, are highly acidic, which
Compounds in citrus fruits may also
Several studies found an association between drinking carbonated beverages and an increased risk of GERD, according to a
However, research is not conclusive on the role that carbonated drinks play in acid reflux. For example, a
The NIDDK recommends people with acid reflux eliminate coffee, tea, and other caffeinated beverages from their diets. However, a
Acid reflux occurs when the valve that connects the stomach to the food pipe, weakens. When this happens, stomach acid flows back into the food pipe.
Because stomach acid is an irritant, it can cause inflammation in the food pipe, which can cause discomfort.
- sour taste in the mouth
- difficulty swallowing
- chest pain
- sore throat
- hoarse voice
- dry cough
- feeling as if there is a lump in the throat
- regurgitating food or acid
Acid reflux is usually a mild but uncomfortable symptom of GERD. Other people have more serious symptoms of GERD that interfere with daily function.
Learn more about the differences between acid reflux, heartburn, and GERD here.
Some medical conditions increase the risk of severe GERD symptoms, including:
- nicotine use
- dry mouth
- hiatal hernia, where the stomach bulges through an opening of the diaphragm
If a person experiences regular and severe episodes of acid reflux or heartburn, it is important for them to contact a doctor, as it might develop into a more serious condition.
- managing body weight
- quitting smoking
- elevating the head of the bed while sleeping
- avoiding tightly fitted clothes
- antacids that neutralize stomach acid, such as Gaviscon or Tums
- H2 receptor blockers can decrease acid production in the stomach for up to 12 hours
- proton pump inhibitors that block acid production for long enough to enable the food pipe to heal
When to call a doctor
Acid reflux, though uncomfortable, can be highly treatable.
People may manage acid reflux at home with some lifestyle changes and the avoidance of triggers. Severe symptoms of GERD may require medication or, in rare cases, surgery.
If an individual has severe or frequent symptoms of acid reflux, their doctor can help rule out other conditions. It is especially important to get medical attention if someone thinks they might be experiencing acid reflux or any other symptoms of GERD.
These symptoms may indicate a more serious health problem, such as a heart attack.
Acid reflux can be uncomfortable, but will typically resolve independently. However, diet changes may help reduce symptoms of acid reflux in some cases.
Drinks such as ginger tea, certain fruit and vegetable juices, and plant-based milks may benefit people experiencing acid reflux and heartburn.
Avoiding citrus juices, carbonated beverages, and alcohol can also help to reduce symptom frequency and severity.