✓ Snack on popcorn
Cuing up a rom-com after dinner? Pop some fiber-rich popcorn to go with it, and you’ll cut your heartburn risk with every bite. A study in the World Journal of Gastroenterology found getting at least 20 grams of fiber daily reduces your acid reflux risk 57%. The nutrient absorbs liquid in the digestive tract, preventing the displacement of stomach acid. Other picks high in fiber: pears, berries, chickpeas and almonds.
✓ Grab an extra pillow
To block reflux, tuck a spare pillow under your head before bed. Australian scientists found elevating your head keeps stomach acid from rising into the throat while you’re lying down. The posture shift is so effective, it reduced acid creeping up into the esophagus by as much as 42% and cut reflux symptoms by up to 29%.
✓ Lie on your left
Dutch scientists found those who slept on their left reduced their nighttime exposure to stomach acid by almost 100% compared to right-side sleepers. The position allows gravity to move food more efficiently through your colon before it triggers a heartburn flare-up.
✓ Try a citrus ‘shield’
If you’ve tried other remedies and still get flare-ups, take the citrus extract d-limonene an hour before bed. It halts nighttime reflux for 92% of folks. As it dissolves, it creates a “shield” in the esophagus to block gastric acids. Take 1,000 mg. every other night for three weeks to block p.m. heartburn for up to six months.
Doze off faster
If reflux wakes you, inhale for 5 seconds, then exhale for 5 seconds and repeat. Mark Hyman, M.D., says calm breathing activates the diaphragm. This stops acid from inching into the esophagus as effectively as OTC antacids do. ■