Certain lifestyle modifications can be helpful in preventing or reducing the symptoms of GERD. Fatty meals slow down gastric (stomach) emptying and, therefore, predispose to distention (expansion or swelling of the abdomen) and reflux (stomach contents flowing backward into the esophagus). An increase in the fat content of meals may be an important factor in explaining the increase of reflux in the western world in recent years.
Eating large meals and reclining too soon after meals (within two or three hours) also predisposes to reflux disease. Certain authorities claim that sleeping with the head of the bed elevated may help empty the esophagus of any refluxate and prevent symptoms.
Certain cardiac (heart) and pulmonary (lung) medications may reduce the pressure of the lower esophageal sphincter (the valve between the bottom of the esophagus and the top of the stomach) and predispose to reflux as well.
People experiencing such a problem should contact their doctor and inquire as to whether they are taking such medications.
Peppermint is said to predispose to lower pressures in the lower esophageal sphincter. Weight loss is important in reducing the pressure difference between the abdomen and the thorax (chest region), thus reducing reflux. Smoking limits the production of saliva and may predispose to symptomatic reflux.Both comments and pings are currently closed.