Acid reflux, also known as heartburn and esophageal reflux, is medically defined as "A painful burning sensation in the esophagus just below the sternum. Heartburn is usually caused by the reflux of gastric contents into the esophagus but may be caused by gastric hyperacidity or peptic ulcer.
Under normal conditions, the sphincter muscle of the esophagus prevents acid-containing stomach contents from being regurgitated back into the esophagus but if the muscle becomes lazy or perhaps relaxed, then acid reflux or heartburn can occur.
Causes and Risk Factors
Acid reflux is one of the easiest things to heal from when you know what causes it. It is caused by consuming excessive amounts of acid-forming products (food and drink) which disturbs the natural acidity levels of the GI tract.
Consuming too much acid-forming food or beverages such as meat, dairy products, refined grains, refined starches, and other processed and refined food-stuffs including acidic and effervescent beverages (i.e. soda pop, beer, wine, milk, processed orange juice, coffee, hot cocoa, etc.) throws off the acidity levels of the gastro-intestinal (GI) tract.
When this acidic content attempts to exit via the mouth, a burning sensation is felt (in the lower heart area which is why acid reflux is also called heartburn). It is so caustic it can actually burn through or eat through the tissues of the GI tract causing ulcers, especially peptic ulcers.
If you also experiencing a nasty, bitter, or acerbic taste in your mouth during your bout with acid reflux, you are simply tasting the acidic contents of the esophagus.
Healing Acid Reflux Naturally
Acid reflux is nothing but a condition of hyperacidity due to poor diet. People are harming themselves by way of what they consume.
Medical authorities state that antacids help acid reflux and heartburn is because antacids are calcium-based and calcium is the most alkaline mineral in the body and it naturally counteracts and neutralizes acidity. That's why they are called antacids, meaning 'anti acid.'
Antacids can offer symptomatic relief, but many commercial antacids can cause as much harm as good when used extensively over time.
Some lifestyle behaviors, such as smoking or being stressed out, can also increase body acidity.
To relieve acid reflux naturally, change your diet, stop smoking and develop stress relief strategies to help manage your body's chemistry in a healthy way.