If you have ever had acid reflux, you know it’s no fun. The burning pain and indigestion that comes from acid in your stomach and moves up your esophagus are absolutely the worst. You can’t get comfortable, it can be hard to sleep, and you may find you are constantly popping antacids.
After changing to an Ayurvedic anti-inflammatory lifestyle, all digestion problems have seemingly disappeared, and I want that for you too. So, let me tell you a little bit about Ayurveda.
It matches lifestyle, diet, and herbs and can help with skin, digestion, stress and fertility. With Ayurveda, it is said that acid reflux is a result of aggravation of pitta Dosha. Pitta is heat energy, but it is mainly located in the stomach. Heat producing foods then aggravate the stomach, increasing acid production. Combining incompatible foods and eating them at the wrong time of day also has a massive effect on producing or not producing acid reflux.
For acid reflux, using the principles of Ayurveda, there are certain herbs that are known to aid digestion.
Ginger can help alleviate acid reflux and all other digestive disorders. As an adaptogen it, not only helps reduce acid moving up the esophagus and can help reduce inflammation, but is also analgesic (relieves the sensation of pain).
Fennel seeds contain high doses of flavonoid anti-oxidants. And for stomach issues, they are rich in fiber and improve stomach function.
Aloe Vera improves blood circulation in the blood vessels. This allows for proper digestion and optimal functioning of the digestive tract.
Coriander is in the same family as fennel seeds. The aromatic oil in coriander is a digestive aid and contains linalool and other terpenoids.
Turmeric is an adaptogen that has been used for centuries. The active component curcumin is the reason for it’s anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, analgesic and antioxidant properties.
You wouldn’t think of limes and lemons because they are acidic. But when you mix lime with water, they become alkaline which helps to neutralize stomach acids and help with digestion.
Is a sap derived from a root of the perennial herb Ferula. Along with Ginger and Turmeric, it has fantastic digestive properties and is widely used in India for aiding with digestion and relieving gas.
The caraway plant has many plant chemicals such as carvone and limonene, and the seeds have the ability to stimulate healthy stomach action and reduce or prevent gas.
Garlic is a fantastic herb to use for acid reflux because it causes the growth and builds up the healthy bacteria in the stomach that destroy Helicobacter pylori, a microorganism that causes inflammation of the stomach lining which can lead to reflux.
Black pepper has been used to treat many problems besides digestion though it does help with that as well. It can also improve weight loss, relieve some cold symptoms, boost metabolism and help with skin problems.
Masala chai generally has cardamom and ginger which as both great digestive aids.
Along with these herbs and seeds, there are other things you should definitely not do when you are prone to acid reflux if you are living an Ayurvedic lifestyle.
Skipping meals, especially breakfast is not advised, if you skip meals by the time lunch time comes around the stomach acids. This governs the emotional heart and affects your overall wellbeing. Ayurveda believes that once agni (the digestive fire) starts increasing and also stomach acid, it is not great to have an empty stomach.
You may also feel irritable, angry, impatient and may overeat.
Avoiding high stress situations is also important as stress can increase acid reflux symptoms. And, is a common trigger for many people. Your gut is sometimes referred to as your second brain, and during high stress situations, drop-in hormone levels can affect the protection of the lining of the esophagus. If you cannot avoid a situation, learn how to diffuse it from within you and release it.
If you are prone to acid reflux, there are also certain foods in Ayurveda that you should most definitely avoid – chili peppers, oily or deep fried food, carbonated drinks, foods filled with preservatives, additives and/or fillers, cow’s dairy, caffeine, and tobacco.
The best things to eat are cooling foods like coconut, which you can drink and use in food preparation for foods such as vegetables, rice dishes or chutneys. Lightly toasted fennel seeds as mentioned above can be eaten, and if you eat a ¼ teaspoon them three times a day between meals, it can help significantly with digestion issues.
You can also drink pomegranate juice, organic rose water, mint lassi and green leafy vegetables, grains, watermelon, honeydew, lettuce, mangos are great choices.
In Ki’s Kitchen we specialise in gut health and reversing digestive disorders through proper food combining and whole plant based foods. If you are popping antacids or suffering with a digestive problem, contact us, we’re here to help.
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