As we get closer to the holidays, one thing is on our mind: food, food and more food! With food though, comes tiredness and heartburn (if you’re not careful). We can’t help you with the tiredness — that’s just par for the course! — but we can help with heartburn. We have some quick heartburn relief methods that you should try this holiday season after a hearty meal.
What is Heartburn?
You probably know what heartburn is. It’s that unpleasant burning in your chest that seems to move up toward your neck.
Despite its name, heartburn actually has nothing to do with your heart, even if it feels that way! It’s actually stomach acid that’s irritating your throat and esophagus. While this sounds serious, don’t worry. Heartburn is a very common phenomenon and usually goes away on its own after two hours or so. Some symptoms may return when you lay down, which is completely normal!
Also, keep in mind that heartburn is very common during pregnancy and could happen at any time, even if you don’t partake in a large holiday feast. These tips can help alleviate symptoms in pregnant women as well but consult with your doctor before you change your diet and health routine.
How to Avoid Heartburn
The best way to stop holiday heartburn is to prevent it from happening at all. Here are some tips to help you avoid the worst of it:
- Stop eating when you are full
- Eat slowly so you know when you’re full
- Take smaller portions
- Avoid spicy, high-fat, and greasy foods. That includes cranberry sauce and turkey skin!
- Go for a walk after meals
- Avoid lying down after meals
- Take antacids before eating
- Eat foods that help ease acid reflux, such as vegetables, non-citrus fruits, lean meats, egg whites, ginger, and oatmeal
We recommend avoiding most teas as well, due to the risk of them having caffeine, mint, spearmint, or peppermint. While these teas can help calm your stomach, they can actually make your heartburn worse in the process.
Holiday Foods to Avoid to Prevent Heartburn
If you don’t want heartburn, you may have to forgo some of these delicious holiday foods.
- Fried food
- Red meat (including brisket!)
- Citrus fruits
- Christmas cookies (ones made with a lot of butter)
- Peppermint candy
Sometimes, you just can’t prevent heartburn. After all, your body likely isn’t used to holiday foods and we can easily push our stomach too far without a second thought. Thankfully, there are ways to reduce the symptoms so you can find quick heartburn relief.
Quick Heartburn Relief
There are a few ways to find quick heartburn relief, naturally.
Drinking water can provide heartburn relief! While it’s not quite the same as pouring water on a flame to douse it, it can help alleviate the burning sensation. Water naturally raises the pH level of the stomach and dilutes the acid.
Water can also help with digestion, thus speeding along the recovery process. If you’re not in the mood for water, you can try plant-based milk, or non-acidic juices, such as carrot juice, aloe vera juice, or cabbage juice.
B Vitamins Reduce Acid Reflux
B vitamins are so versatile in their benefits. Not only can they help fight off your food coma and improve your mood, they can help provide quick heartburn relief!
According to a 2006 study, B vitamins may help stop acid reflux symptoms. Researchers divided the participants into two groups.
Group A took a dietary supplement containing:
Vitamin B-9, or folic acid
L-tryptophan (the same hormone in turkey!)
Methionine (amino acid in fish, meat, and dairy)
Betaine (natural compound that helps your liver)
Melatonin (natural hormone that controls your sleep-wake cycle)
As a result, Group A reported less symptoms than those that did not take B vitamins. The research did note that the heartburn relief could have been as effective due to the non-B vitamins, but suggested the B vitamins all played a critical role in the relief.
B-vitamins are very common in holiday meals — turkey is chock-full of B12 — but sometimes, that’s not enough to keep heartburn away. An IV is an ideal solution to help you get the nutrients your body needs. It also makes you feel great for days after.
You can give us a call, especially if you feel like you can’t eat (or drink) any more! Our registered nurses come right to your door. You can get hydration, and vitamins B-complex and C to help reduce your heartburn symptoms. You won’t have to worry about taking time away from family or travelling.
Happy holidays, everyone!