Living with acid reflux can be disappointing sometimes. You avoid going to a party because you don’t want to eat foods and drinks that trigger your condition. But should you avoid herbal tea? Or is there an herbal tea best for acid reflux?
There’s no definitive link between coffee or tea and acid reflux. In a study involving over 40,000 individuals in Norway, researchers found that herbal tea drinking doesn’t increase the risk or affect acid reflux.
Even so, you should still listen to your body. Each person is different. You may find that drinking herbal tea is beneficial for your acid reflux. If you’re not sure which herbal tea to help your acid reflux or that doesn’t trigger your symptoms, you might want to consider these teas.
Chamomile Herbal Tea
To make chamomile herbal tea you need its flowers. It’s known for its ability to reduce anxiety. It is also useful in helping you fall asleep. But many people are using it to calm digestive issues, such as diarrhea, colic, and IBS.
Acid reflux is the result of stomach acid moving back into your esophagus causing pain. With chamomile tea’s anti-inflammatory effects, it might help with the pain.
In a study, researchers found that chamomile extract reduced gastric acidity the same way how commercial antacid worked. Furthermore, it was more effective than antacids. However, more study is required to determine the real impact of chamomile tea on acid reflux patients.
Another reason chamomile tea might be great for your acid reflux is its ability to calm you down. That’s why it’s great for anxiety. Since stress can trigger GERD symptoms, chamomile tea can help in reducing stress, thereby, preventing your stress-related acid reflux symptoms.
But before you rush into a health shop to buy chamomile tea, you must first know whether or not you’re allergic to plants in the daisy family. If you are, then you can’t take chamomile tea as it can cause an allergic reaction.
Thankfully, most people can enjoy drinking this tea without experiencing any side effects. In that case, you can safely drink it every time your GERD symptoms attack. But you should not drive after drinking this tea as it causes drowsiness.
Ginger Herbal Tea for Acid Reflux
Just like chamomile tea, ginger tea also includes anti-inflammatory properties. But don’t take it too much as it can only worsen your symptoms. You just need a smaller dose of ginger tea to help with your acid reflux.
Another reason you should consider taking ginger-tea for your acid reflux is that of its phenolic compounds. These compounds can relieve gastrointestinal irritation. It also reduces gastric contractions. In that case, it can help in lowering the acid moving back to your esophagus.
In this study, it showed that those who are taking ginger supplements experienced a reduction in their inflammation markers in a month.
Still, there’s no conclusive evidence that ginger herbal tea can be effective in acid reflux. Nevertheless, some people swore by it. If you wish to try it to know whether it fixes your acid reflux, try preparing it.
You can make ginger tea by peeling, grating or slicing ginger. Add it to boiling water. Steep in water for a few minutes before drinking it.
Some antacids have the same chemicals found in ginger. That’s why some people find that drinking herbal tea has relieved their acid reflux symptoms.
But you should not drink liters of ginger tea just to reduce your symptoms. You must only drink it in moderation. You can take up to four grams of ginger. It’s enough to relieve your symptoms.
When you take ginger tea, though, you may experience minor side effects, such as gas and bloating.
Licorice Herbal Tea
It has been used for thousands of years in Chinese medicine. Licorice herbal tea is considered as a demulcent. It means that it interacts with your stomach lining. Then, it creates a barrier that protects your stomach to soothe it and for further healing.
The easiest way to get licorice is by buying licorice root in tea bags. However, licorice teabags contain lower-quality ingredients. That’s why if you wish to purchase a licorice tea bag, you should only purchase the best brand.
You may also consider getting loose leaf. However, steeping it can take a lot of time. Nevertheless, this option is better than the tea bag because of its high-quality ingredients.
If you want to take licorice without the longer preparation, then consider getting licorice in pill or liquid form.
Slippery Elm Bark
It’s native to the eastern and central parts of the United States. This bark is a remedy for many diseases, including acid reflux.
When you mix it with water, it produces a mucilage or a sticky material that can be soothing to your stomach. Native Americans would even use the inner bark of this tree around their meat to ensure that the meat wouldn’t go bad.
Because of its demulcent properties, it can soothe stomach lining and intestines. It also reduces irritation. In a study, it showed that mixing slippery elm could improve bowel movements.
Some doctors are open to the idea of taking slippery elm bark tea to treat acid reflux. Before you actually try it, make sure that you check with your doctor. Your physician might agree to mix it with a glass of water. When you drink it though, make sure that you drink it after a meal.
Slippery elm bark is available in different forms. If you don’t want to drink it as a tea, you can use lozenges or tablets.
It’s not easy to find slippery elm bark tea. But you can easily shop for it at Amazon.
Slippery elm bark tea may interact with your prescription medicines. Make sure that you talk to your doctor about it before you even try it out.
It’s not the marshmallow white fluffy candy that you’re used to eating while camping or that marshmallow goodness when making smores. But we’re talking of the marshmallows made from the marshmallow plant known as the Althaea officinalis. It’s a perennial plant that grows in wet marshy areas.
This marshmallow root is a medicinal herb. For centuries, it’s been used as a treatment for various digestive issues, such as indigestion, ulcers, and acid reflux, just to name a few.
You don’t actually eat the root of this plant. Rather, you make it as a tea. This root contains a high amount of mucilage. It is a thick substance that comes with healing properties, including treatment for indigestion, gut lining repair, and other GI problems.
As a demulcent, the root coats the GI tract lining to protect the mucous membranes from irritation. Furthermore, it can relieve irritation as a result of acid reflux. It also lowers inflammation in the digestive tract.
This root is also antimicrobial that can kill harmful organisms in the GI tract. With antimicrobial properties, this root can help in healing irritated tissues. It also treats yeast overgrowth, such as Candida and H. pylori.
The marshmallow flower is also used to prevent having an effective healing property for ulcers.
You may purchase marshmallow tea or opt for the root powder. Either way, you can use it as a beverage.
Does the Caffeine in Tea Cause Acid Reflux?
Herbal teas may contain caffeine, but not all teas have it. Keep in mind that true tea, like the Camellia sinensis plant, has caffeine. That’s why you must avoid, oolong, black and green tea if you’re suffering from GERD.
Don’t Drink Tea During Meals
Although these herbal teas can be useful in alleviating GERD symptoms, they’re not ideal to be taken during meals. Rather, you should drink tea before or after eating a meal.
The reason for this is that liquids, whether water or tea, can dilute the stomach acid that helps in digesting the food. Liquids also overfill your stomach.
Apart from that, you must also avoid lying down after eating. You must not have late-night snacks. If you must eat late-night snacks, make sure that you wait two hours before you lie down.
When you lie down after eating your meal, the stomach acid will move up to your esophagus.
That’s said, you should change your habit of eating so you’ll experience less acid reflux symptoms.
Boost Your Good Bacteria in Your Gut
If you wish to properly treat your acid reflux, you need to treat the cause and not the symptoms. That said, your goal in treating acid reflux is to restore the natural acid production in your stomach. You also need to fight against the bacterial overgrowth.
With probiotics, you’re restoring a healthy balance of good bacteria. In that way, they can help in eliminating bad bacteria while maintaining the normal functioning of the digestive system.
If there’s an inadequate amount of healthy bacteria in your gut, it takes time to break down your food. As a result, the undigested food just sits there in your gut. It starts to ferment and cause gas. Unfortunately, the gas production can push the acid in your stomach up in the esophagus.
In a study, researchers noted that using probiotics on top of the reflux treatment could help in eliminating H. pylori. This type of bacterium causes changes in your gut environment. It enables harmful bacteria to survive in the gut. H. pylori also reduces stomach acidity.
As you frequently eat probiotics, you’re protecting your gut from H. pylori. The most beneficial probiotic species for acid reflux is Lactobacillus acidophilus. This type of bacterium is well-tolerated. And it has been shown to help with acid reflux.
When you choose a probiotic supplement, opt for that one that has a high CFU count. You must also pick a variety of strains.
Change Your Diet and Lower Your Carb Intake
Your diet can play a huge role in fighting against acid reflux. Because carbs can help in the overgrowth of harmful organisms, you should avoid or lower your carb intake. In that way, you can get your GERD symptoms under control.
There’s no need for you to follow a very low carb diet for the long term. As long as you have alleviated your GERD symptoms, you can go back to eating moderate carbs.
Is Fruit Juice Allowed?
Most fruit juices are acidic. But there are good options though. You can opt for carrot juice, aloe vera, cabbage juice, watermelon, spinach, cucumber, and pear juice. As much as possible, avoid drinking citrus juices, pineapple juice, and apple juice.
You should also avoid drinking tomato juice as it triggers GERD symptoms.
Can You Drink Smoothies?
Smoothies can be a healthy addition to your diet because you can easily incorporate minerals and vitamins. They can be a great option for your GERD symptoms.
When you make smoothies, make sure that you opt for low-acid fruits. Choose pear or watermelon. Banana is also great. You may also want to add spinach, kale, and other green vegetables.
Another fruit that you can add to your smoothie is avocado. However, in some patients with GERD, avocado may trigger the symptoms.
Hence, if avocado triggers them, you must avoid it until the symptoms subside. But if this fruit doesn’t trigger GERD symptoms, then by all means add it to your smoothies.
Just Drink Water
The simplest solution to your GERD symptoms is drinking water. Water’s pH is neutral. It may help in raising the pH of your acidic meal. Then again, you must avoid drinking too much water as it can disrupt the balance of minerals in the body.
You may also drink unsweetened coconut water. This type of water can be a great source of electrolytes, like potassium. These electrolytes can promote pH balance in the body. They’re vital in controlling acid reflux.
Which herbal tea is best for acid reflux? We’ve listed those teas above. However, since every person is different, make sure that you observe the symptoms that you feel after drinking one of them.
If the tea is making your symptoms worse, then you must avoid it. Apart from drinking tea, you must also avoid eating spicy foods, fried foods, and sour foods. And make sure that you wait at least two hours after eating before you lie down.