Acid reflux is a common condition that people often refer to as heartburn. Natural remedies offer an easy and inexpensive way to treat the symptoms at home.

The symptoms of acid reflux typically include heartburn, hiccups, and a metallic taste in the mouth.

Acid reflux is common, accounting for about 8.9 million clinical visits annually in the United States.

Anyone who experiences persistent or frequently recurring acid reflux should seek medical help. Other people may find that home remedies are sufficient for reducing acid reflux and relieving the symptoms.

In this article, we list 11 home remedies that a person can try.

a woman boils the kettle to make tea, one of the natural remedies for acid refluxShare on Pinterest
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Acid reflux, medically known as gastroesophageal reflux (GER), occurs when acid flows from the stomach up into the food pipe (esophagus).

Certain diets can trigger acid reflux, and it is also more likely to affect pregnant people and those with asthma or excess body weight.

If acid reflux occurs frequently, a person may have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), which can cause complications in the long term. Anyone who is concerned about their symptoms should speak with a doctor.

A person can try several home remedies to treat or lessen the symptoms of acid reflux.

1. Quit smoking

A significant body of research has confirmed that smoking is bad for health, but people may be unaware that smoke, even secondhand smoke, can increase acid reflux.

The lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is the valve between the esophagus and the stomach. The LES stops stomach acid from flowing back up into the food pipe.

According to a 2015 review of studies, smoking reduces the pressure on the LES, making acid reflux possible. Quitting smoking should normalize this pressure, reducing the likelihood of acid reflux.

These tips may help people looking to quit smoking.

2. Calming techniques

Focusing on the discomfort that acid reflux causes can lead to anxiety and worsen how a person feels.

Someone experiencing anxiety can try box breathing techniques to manage the rapid breathing and dizziness that can occur with anxiety.

Although staying calm will not stop acid reflux, it can help someone avoid experiencing worse symptoms.

A 2013 article in the journal Cognitive Behaviour Therapy suggests that applied relaxation techniques are among the most effective ways of combating anxiety.

3. Avoid trigger ingredients

Research shows that certain foods reduce the tone of the LES and can cause irritation.

A person can try eliminating trigger foods from their diet to see whether this reduces the symptoms of acid reflux.

Common trigger foods include:

  • coffee
  • alcohol
  • mint
  • tomato
  • fatty foods
  • spicy foods

4. Incorporate ginger into the diet

Some research suggests that ginger may be beneficial for nausea, vomiting, and other symptoms, although the limited quality of included evidence means that more research is necessary to confirm these benefits.

Based on the existing evidence, researchers suggest a daily dose of 1,500 milligrams. It is possible that a higher intake could have adverse effects.

Ginger is an easy ingredient to incorporate into the diet. People can try:

  • adding it to hot water to make ginger tea
  • including it in a stir-fry
  • boiling it in a soup
  • grating it raw onto salads or cereals

People who dislike the taste of ginger can mask it by including it in recipes with other strong flavors.

5. Eat earlier

A 2013 study found that participants who went to sleep within 3 hours of eating had a higher risk of GERD recurrence.

Leaving a longer gap between dinner and going to bed gives the body more time to digest the food. Sitting up also helps the body digest food properly.

The proper digestion of food can decrease the likelihood of acid reflux.

6. Maintain a moderate weight

Eating a balanced diet is key for a person’s general health, and it can also help them manage their weight.

The 2020–2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans state that 74% of all adults in the U.S. are overweight or have obesity.

The Obesity Action Coalition says that acid reflux occurs more frequently among adults who have a high body mass index (BMI) or obesity. The reason for the link seems to be that excess fat around the abdominal area puts pressure on the stomach, making the body work harder to keep acid down.

People with a high BMI may find that reaching and maintaining a moderate weight helps them reduce the frequency of acid reflux.

It is important that people focus on safe ways to lose weight, as losing too much weight too quickly may also cause health problems.

Learn about 20 ways to lose weight safely.

7. Chew sugar-free gum after meals

An older study from 2005 has shown that chewing gum can increase swallowing frequency, improving the clearance rate of reflux in the esophagus.

Chewing also boosts saliva production, which helps neutralize stomach acid.

However, it is important to avoid chewing gums containing sugar, which may make the symptoms worse or cause dental erosion.

People should also avoid mint flavored gum, as mint can worsen the symptoms of acid reflux.

8. Wear less restrictive clothing

Tight clothing, such as belts, jeans, or other fitted garments around the stomach and waist, can put pressure on the abdomen. This pressure, known as intragastric pressure, may trigger acid reflux.

A person can try wearing loose clothing to relieve the pressure on their abdominal region.

9. Try herbal tea

Some drinks, including coffee and alcohol, may increase the symptoms of acid reflux. Replacing these beverages with decaffeinated herbal teas may help reduce the likelihood of acid reflux.

Herbal teas can also help improve digestion and ease symptoms such as dizziness or nausea.

Popular herbal teas include:

It is best to avoid mint teas, which may trigger acid reflux.

10. Introduce high fiber food into the diet

Fiber is an important part of every healthy diet. It can help a person feel full and aid digestion, easing the symptoms of acid reflux.

Fiber-rich foods that a person can start introducing to their diet include:

Learn more about the benefits of high fiber foods and how to include them in the diet.

11. Keep a diary

Keeping a diary and tracking when acid reflux occurs can help a person feel more in control of their body.

Alongside their symptoms, they can note the foods that they have eaten and any changes to their behaviors or habits. This approach can help a person identify any triggers for acid reflux, which they can then avoid where possible to prevent acid reflux from recurring.

However, triggers for acid reflux vary from person to person, and they may not always be obvious.

If someone is unable to identify and eliminate factors that cause or worsen acid reflux, or if they have concerns about their symptoms, they should contact a doctor. They may have GERD or another health condition. A doctor can diagnose the issue and help them devise a treatment plan.

Natural remedies can be a quick, cheap, and effective way to treat acid reflux.

Small changes to the diet or daily habits may relieve symptoms without the need to see a doctor.

However, it is important to be aware of worsening or persistent symptoms of acid reflux, which may indicate that someone has GERD or another condition.

Anyone concerned about their symptoms should consult a doctor.