Acidity or Acid reflux, as some people might call it, is a very common condition that affects many Indians. This condition happens when one person feels a burning sensation, like heartburn under their lower chest area. This happens when the stomach acid, also known as Hydrochloric acid, flows back into the food pipe. This condition takes place because of unhealthy eating habits and poor lifestyle choices.
You must be wondering how does acidity occur? Well, we have the answer to it. The food that we eat, passes down the esophagus and goes into the stomach. There are gastric glands present in our stomach, that produce the necessary acids that are produced to digest the food, as well as kill any kinds of germs in the stomach. At times, the gastric glands start producing a large amount of acid; more than what is required by the body for digesting the food. This is what causes acidity. This condition is characterized by a burning sensation, just above the stomach, or right below the breastbone. Acidity is much more common in India, because of the heavy consumption of oily and spicy foods by Indians.
CAUSES OF ACIDITY
Acidity can be caused due to various other factors as well. Such as :
- Having unhealthy eating habits. For example, consuming bulk quantities of very oily and spicy food.
- Because of certain foods that are consumed in excess.
- Acidity might also occur as a side effect of some medicines.
- You might have existing medical conditions, that might cause acidity.
- There are various other causes that might cause acidity such as stress, lack of sleep, etc.
SYMPTOMS OF ACIDITY
The symptoms of acidity or acid reflux include the following :
- Burning sensation in the stomach.
- Burning sensation in the throat as well as in the heart.
- Difficulty in swallowing.
- Prolonged sour taste in the mouth
- Bad breath
HOME REMEDIES FOR ACIDITY
We have all suffered from acidity at one point or another. Vaidyanath is going to share here, some tips that might prove to be useful in treating acidity at home. Let’s take a look at some of these:
- BAKING SODA
Baking soda is also called sodium bicarbonate. It is a natural antacid that alleviates the symptoms of heartburn or acid indigestion. It counteracts the stomach acid and pushes it back down into the stomach.
How to use :
- Take ½ to 1 teaspoon of baking soda.
- Add it to one glass of water.
- Stir well.
- Drink this mixture, to soothe down the burning sensation caused by acidity or heartburn.
- Just one glass of this water, should do the trick and make you feel better instantly.
- APPLE CIDER VINEGAR
Apple cider vinegar is one of the best home remedies for heartburn. It is a tried and tested method employed by thousands of people across the globe to eliminate heartburn symptoms and also to prevent them from developing in the future. It is said to bring the gastric juices to a normal level.
How to use:
- Take 1 to 2 teaspoons of Apple Cider Vinegar.
- Add 1 teaspoon of honey, into the vinegar.
- Add one glass of water into it.
- Stir well and consume this mixture.
- It will be helpful in easing out the acidity.
- Have the Apple cider vinegar/honey mixture every day, to totally eradicate the problem of acidity or heartburn from your system.
- HERBAL TEA
To soothe down acidity, you can consume various herbal teas that are easily available in the market, such as chamomile tea or green tea. Chamomile tea soothes gastrointestinal irritation and lowers gastric acidity, thus relieving you from the heartburn.
On the other hand, green tea has antioxidants. It also possesses anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. These properties work together as a team to kill bacteria from the stomach, remove harmful toxins and restore the acid levels in the stomach.
How to use :
- Take one bag of either chamomile tea or green tea.
- Dip the tea bag in one cup of hot water.
- Let it steep for a few minutes.
- Sip this herbal tea, while it’s still warm.
- You can drink two to three cups of herbal tea daily.
- MILK TO SOOTHE ACIDITY
We refer to skimmed milk here. Skimmed milk increases the pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter. The following property of skimmed milk relieves acidity and also aids in preventing it in the future.
How to use :
- Take almost 8oz of skimmed milk.
- Drink skimmed milk before going to bed or in between meals as a snack.
- You can have one or two glasses of skimmed milk every day.
Mustard is alkaline in nature and therefore, it neutralizes the stomach acid that rises up in your throat.
How to use :
- Take one teaspoon of yellow mustard seeds.
- Directly gulp down the mustard seeds with one glass of water.
- Another alternative can be to mix two teaspoons of mustard powder in one glass of buttermilk and drink it.
- Use this remedy just when you feel that your acidity is developing or when in the middle of one.
Honey is very helpful in soothing the damaged line of the esophagus. It consists of anti-inflammatory properties, which are known to relieve pain in the throat or chest. It also contains a compound, known as potassium that restores the acid balance in the stomach.
How to use :
- Take one teaspoon of raw, organic honey and mix it with one glass of lukewarm water.
- Mix them well.
- Consume it before one hour or having your meals.
- You can drink two to three glasses of this water to cure heartburn.