Some people might think that gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is the same as heartburn, but it is slightly different and requires special attention. Otherwise, people might suffer from severe symptom complications.

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What is GERD?

GERD is a name that stands for “a chronic condition caused by the backflow of acid, bile, enzymes, and food into the esophagus.”[1] The most common triggers are overeating, certain foods and beverages, and sleeping after eating. GERD occurs because of the valve between the lower end of the esophagus. And the stomach doesn’t close properly and allows the stomach contents to reach the esophagus and throat.

 

GERD symptoms

Then a person can have a discomfort in the chest or throat and sour throat. If these symptoms occur more than few times a week, it is most likely to be diagnosed with GERD. There are further problems if the condition is not treated as “refluxed stomach acid can erode or cause ulcerations in the lining of the esophagus.”1 Also, other problems and complications might appear. You can also read more about heartburn and exercise to understand its difference from this disease.

  • A scar tissue – makes it hard to swallow food.
  • Higher risk of developing Barrett’s esophagus which means that there is severe damage to the esophageal lining
  • increased risk of esophageal cancer

GERD problem has become more topical over the years. Estimations show that about 25 million Americans suffer from this health problem. Board certified nutrition specialist Chen Ben Asher also notes that it has become easier to diagnose the disease and treat it.

Dietary and lifestyle contributions to GERD

People might have different factors that contribute to disease. Some might experience heartburn when eating spicy foods. There are profs that tobacco and being overweight also contributes to developing GERD. Extra fat creates extra pressure to the stomach. This undesirable pressure makes esophageal sphincter not to be longer able to perform its task to keep the stomach contents from getting into the esophagus.

Choosing different and well-balanced food can also help to avoid GERD symptoms. Spicy foods like peppers can cause heartburn, and that is a sign to stop eating them. Crucial is to stop smoking because it causes decreased blood flow into the stomach lining and increases acid production. There are special medicaments too to deal with the problem but they also adverse effects by themselves. Prescribed medications can interrupt the normal absorption of vitamins and minerals and inhibit the food digestion. Supervision of specialists will have to make the best balance of medications and additional nutritional support. Natural remedies like d-limonene can help to resolute the GERD symptoms.

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Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease is something that needs special attention not to cause more severe symptoms. As there is a better understanding of this disease, it is possible to make the best program to help everyone and get the best test results. A further step is up to a person to take towards better lifestyle and health.

Reference:

[1] How to Manage Symptoms of Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD). Accessed from: http://www.lifeextension.com/magazine/2007/4/atd/page-01rel=”nofollow”