Acid Reflux or GERD

Acid Reflux or GERD

Acid Reflux or GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease) is the condition in which the valve between the esophagus and stomach fails to close letting the stomach acids to flow back up into the esophagus. Under normal conditions, it opens to allow food and shuts tightly afterwards. This causes heartburn and is common in pregnant women.

Cause
This happens due to consumption of pitta (fire) aggravating foods, incompatible foods (virudh aahar), excessive intake of tea, coffee, fried, processed and spicy foods which impair all the doshas, predominantly pitta dosha. This results into production of heating toxins in the body that are expelled upwards into the food pipe causing acidity and heartburn. An aggressive nature, hyperactivity, disturbed biological cycle, irregular eating patterns, increased consumption of painkillers and antibiotics and drinking alcohol and carbonated beverages are the other reasons that cause such effects.

Symptoms

  • Chest pain
  • Heartburn
  • Difficulty in swallowing food

Ayurvedic View

According to Ayurveda, Acid Reflux is caused due to imbalance in the pitta Dosha which is an Ayurvedic humor that symbolizes heat or fire. Its nature is acidic, hot, sharp, intense and pungent and is located in the stomach. Due to aggravated pitta, the acidic content in stomach fluids increases and thus it rises up to reach the esophagus to result into heartburn.
Diet & Lifestyle Advice

  • Avoid tea, coffee, carbonated and alcoholic drinks; processed and fermented foods; cooking ingredients such as ginger, garlic, onions, tomatoes and vinegar; foods with rich gravies, sour, salty and spicy foods and curd.
  • Meals should be taken at regular intervals in a relaxed atmosphere.
  • Yogasans such as Vajrasana, Bhujangasana and Bhastrika Pranayama are helpful in this condition.

Home Remedies

  • Mix equal parts of powdered rock candy (mishri), fennel and green cardamom. Take 1 teaspoon of it with a glass of cold milk and drink.
  • Mix equal parts of powdered fennel, basil leaves, licorice root and coriander seeds. Consume ½ teaspoon of this mixture with ½ teaspoon of powdered rock candy (mishri) 15 minutes before your meal.