Making changes to your lifestyle can help prevent or minimize the effects that heartburn has on you. Pick a couple of things to try and see if they make a difference.
MAINTAIN A HEALTHY WEIGHT
If you’re overweight, losing a few pounds may help ease your heartburn symptoms. Less weight around your belly means less pressure that could force acid up into your esophagus. Learn HEARTBURN DIET TIPS that can help change how and what you eat to help you manage heartburn better.
Regular exercise can help with heartburn prevention in several ways. Exercise reduces stress, improves digestion, and helps control weight. It can also improve your mood, regulate blood sugar, and improve cardiovascular strength. Talk to your doctor before beginning or revising a diet or exercise program.
Meditation can help reduce stress and enhance your mental and physical well-being. See if making time to meditate a few times a week makes a difference in how you feel. A quick search online will turn up classes in your area, as well as books and instructional videos.
If you stop smoking, it can help your heartburn, among many other health benefits. Smoking weakens the lower esophageal sphincter that normally keeps acid from coming up out of your stomach.
WEAR LOOSE CLOTHING
Wearing tight fitting clothing such as belts can put additional pressure on the stomach. This can force food against the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) causing acid reflux and heartburn.
TRY SITTING UP
Avoid lying down for at least 3 hours after a meal. Lying down after eating could cause stomach acid to rise leading to heartburn and indigestion. Additionally, try not to eat before bedtime and consider raising the head of your bed in order to keep the head and shoulders elevated.
EAT SMALLER MEALS
A full stomach can put extra pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter (LES). Eat slowly and keep portions small. Try eating six small meals throughout the day instead of 3 large meals.
TAKE AN ACID REDUCER
For those days when occasional heartburn just can’t be prevented, an over the counter acid reducer can help. PEPCID® works fast to relieve heartburn and control acid all day or all night.*
*Based on 9-hour acid control studies during the day and 12-hour acid control studies during the night. Acid control does not imply symptom relief.