Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), which is also more commonly known as heartburn, is a common occurrence in America. In fact, roughly 60 percent of American adults experience GERD at some extent during a 12-month period and about 20 percent suffer symptoms on a weekly basis. With this being so common, it can be helpful to know how to deal with it if you ever begin suffering heartburn and related symptoms. Here are a few natural ways to deal with GERD:
1. Shed Those Extra Pounds.
If you're overweight, you may be able to see an improvement in your heartburn and other GERD-related symptoms by losing weight. In a 2012 study, it was determined that women were able to see improvement in their Gastroasophageal systems after losing somewhere between five and 10 percent of their total body weight, while men saw improvements after about 10 percent weight loss. Depending on your exact weight, roughly 10 pounds should do the trick.
2. Have an Ounce of Aloe Vera Juice.
You know that aloe vera soothes sunburns, but it can also soothe your throat when you are dealing with heartburn and related symptoms. You shouldn't drink more than a few ounces of aloe juice, and it is also recommended that you start off slow. You should only try an ounce at a time, and increase it by an ounce when needed. This is because diarrhea is a common side effect of taking aloe orally.
3. Give Slippery Elm a Try.
According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, slippery elm is a very popular herbal remedy for a number of issues, including wounds, sore throats and stomach problems. It works to coat and soothe the throat, stomach, as well as intestines. Because this herb has the ability to increase mucus secretion, it can help relieve acid reflux symptoms by protecting the gastrointestinal tract against excess acidity. In fact, it is often recommended as a natural remedy for GERD.
4. Chew a Piece of Gum After Meals.
According to WebMD, a stick of gum after you eat may not just help freshen your breath, but it may help you avoid having heartburn and acid reflux symptoms. Gum is able to do this by stimulating the production of saliva. This helps keep acid levels at a minimum in the mouth and the esophagus, thereby reducing the risk of GERD. According to the research provided by WedMD, you need to chew gum for roughly 30 minutes after large, high-fat meals.
If you are worried that you are experiencing GERD symptoms, you should discuss your concerns with a health care professional as soon as possible. With their help, you can determine an effective course of treatment so that you don't have to suffer anymore. In the meantime, though, the above tips should help control your symptoms.