Heartburn has nothing to do with the heart since it is a digestive problem and there are several reasons for heartburn. The condition usually occurs after consuming a large meal or when you try to recline after eating. The common symptoms of the condition include the burning sensation at the back area of the throat or in the mid portion of the chest, chest pain; the feeling like something is stuck in your chest or throat and difficulties swallowing. However, you should know that the causes of heartburn might vary from one individual to another.
Dietary factors play a huge role on the development of the condition. You must know that eating large amount of foods can trigger heartburn symptoms. Eating before going to bed can also trigger the condition along with certain foods that you are consuming. According to research, onions, garlic, peppermint, chocolate, tomatoes and tomato-based foodstuffs, citrus fruits and foods that contain high amount of fats or spices can all worsen the problem. In addition to that, heartburn can also be triggered by consuming citrus juices, alcoholic drinks, carbonated and caffeinated beverages. That is the reason why it is necessary to determine what increase risk of heartburn in your case in order to avoid the consumption of the trigger foods.
The development of heartburn conditions may also depend on the individual’s lifestyle. Living a sedentary life and obesity can increase the symptoms of the problem. Smoking is another culprit since nicotine can relax the LES or lower esophageal sphincter, thus making it function improperly. Smoking can also cause the gastric juices to regurgitate or splash to the esophagus and throat. Other factors involving lifestyle is the use of ill-fitting clothes.
There are certain medical conditions that are considered as reasons for heartburn as well. Heartburn during pregnancy is a common phenomenon and this is due to the pressure added on the stomach and the weakening of the LES due to the child’s development inside the mother’s womb. Gallstone problems can also cause heartburn as a symptom.
Coffee heartburn, on the other hand, is a type of heartburn condition that is triggered due to the consumption of coffee. Based on a study, consuming coffee can stimulate the secretion of gastric juices and slows down the emptying of the stomach.
It was also found that consuming carbonated drinks might result to heartburn at night. On a study conducted, 3,000 individuals suffering from heartburn while asleep reported that they are consuming high amounts of carbonated drinks during the day. According to experts, this is due to the high concentration of acid contained in carbonated drinks that add up to the level of acid in the stomach.
Experts also believe that alcoholic beverages can result to heartburn, as it can weaken the LES, thus causing the stomach acid to move up and towards the esophagus. When alcohol weakens the LES, the valve opens up and acid is allowed to flow freely. Alcohol can also irritate the valve and damage the esophageal lining.
Although not exactly a food, orange juice is still considered as a heartburn food. That means although orange juice has lots of benefits, it should still be consumed moderately, especially by individuals who are afflicted with heartburn conditions. Aside from orange juice, other citrus juices like grapefruit juice should also be avoided or consumed moderately, as this can irritate the LES as well.