Stomach acid is vital for breaking down food and converting nutrients into substances your body can absorb and use. There are times, however, when stomach acid-producing cells may pump out high amounts of acid, which can cause unpleasant symptoms.
The pH level of your stomach varies. However, a stomach pH of 1.5 to 2.5 is typical for maintaining digestive health. These levels can increase when food enters the stomach. Other factors may also contribute to the overproduction of stomach acid, including stress, infections, and medication side effects.
Excess stomach acid can result in severe health conditions like ulcers or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) when left untreated. The symptoms of high stomach acid levels differ for every person. But people commonly experience abdominal pain, bloating, and heartburn.
Are you suffering and trying to find relief from stomach acidity? Consider these proven tips to help you decrease excess stomach acid and prevent further complications.
Implement Dietary Changes
Dietary habits are a potential cause of high levels of stomach acid. If you’re experiencing reflux after having a meal, your food choices are likely causing excess acid in your stomach. It typically happens when stomach acid flows back into your esophagus, resulting in a burning sensation in the middle of your chest and other symptoms.
Hence, being more mindful of your food consumption is essential. Certain foods can trigger an excessive buildup of acid in your stomach. It’s worth noting, however, that every person is different, meaning personal food triggers for stomach acid may vary.
Keeping a food journal can make it easier to pinpoint which specific foods are worsening your symptoms. Before implementing any changes in your diet, it’s also a good idea to consult a registered dietitian.
But to give you a headstart, here are some dietary changes that can effectively help decrease the overproduction of stomach acid:
- Avoid spicy foods with high acid content, such as salsa, hot peppers, black pepper, curry, and chili.
- Reduce intake of high-fat foods like french fries, red meat, butter, whole milk, creamy sauces, pizza, and processed snack foods.
- Decrease consumption of alcohol, caffeine, carbonated beverages, and citrus juices.
- Increase fiber in your diet by eating more vegetables, non-citrus fruits, whole grains, beans, nuts, and seeds.
- Steer clear of late-night snacks like pizza, chips, and high-sugar foods.
Make Lifestyle Modifications
Note that how you eat can also affect your stomach’s acid levels. Eating small or regular portions can be as beneficial as avoiding specific trigger foods. A large meal will take longer to digest in the stomach, causing it to produce an increased amount of acid.
As much as possible, avoid eating large meals, especially late in the day. Likewise, eating your food slowly and chewing it properly can help improve digestion and prevent excess stomach acid.
Besides implementing changes in your dietary habits, making these lifestyle modifications is crucial to decreasing any excess buildup of stomach acid:
- Exercise regularly to maintain a healthy weight.
- Quit smoking cigarettes or cut down on how much you smoke.
- Keep an upright posture while eating to have better digestion.
- Wear loose-fitting clothes to lessen the pressure on your stomach.
- Get enough sleep every day to improve digestion and prevent excess stomach acid.
Adjust Your Sleeping Position
Your sleeping position can also impact how your body digests food, especially if you already have high stomach acid levels and are prone to acid reflux. Unfortunately, many sleeping positions increase the likelihood of stomach acid flowing back into the esophagus.
Your digestive system works harder during sleep. You will hardly notice it processing food when it’s working properly. However, if there’s excess stomach acid, you will likely experience discomfort, heartburn, and other unpleasant sensations. By simply adjusting your sleeping position, you can boost your digestive health and reduce stomach acid levels.
Sleeping on your left side can be beneficial for reducing stomach acid and its associated symptoms. This sleeping position shifts food and stomach acid away from the lower esophageal sphincter, decreasing the chances of acid reflux.
Moreover, in a study among people with chronic heartburn, the acid cleared more quickly when they slept on their left side than when they lay on their back or right. This also translates to reduced exposure to high amounts of stomach acid.
Take Stomach-Acid Medications
Besides dietary and lifestyle changes, certain medications can help neutralize the amount of acid in your stomach. Some individuals may need medicines to relieve symptoms, especially unbearable pain.
For some, using over-the-counter medicines like Prilosec OTC is sufficient to alleviate their symptoms. However, others may need a Prisolec prescription to treat damage to the stomach and esophagus caused by high stomach acid.
When taking stomach-acid medications, it’s always best to work with a medical professional to ensure the proper dosage and timing for your condition. Whether you need to take Prilosec OTC or on prescription, you can find various Exclusive Prilosec Deals to help you lower the overall cost.
Take Care of Your Mental Health
High-stress levels are another contributing factor to the increased production of stomach acid. Emotions like anger and anxiety can influence the sensitivity of your gastrointestinal tract. Likewise, stressful situations can lead to overeating and excessive alcohol intake, all of which can contribute to high stomach acid levels.
Considering that, taking care of your mental health is also crucial to improving your digestive health and decreasing stomach acid. It’s particularly true if you’re experiencing stomach discomfort without a physical cause. Employing relaxing strategies may help you stay calm when dealing with life’s stressors.
One Last Note
High stomach acid levels can increase your risk of developing serious health conditions. Suppose your symptoms become severe and frequent. Seek consultation with a doctor to obtain an accurate diagnosis and treatment for your symptoms.
Lifebing is driven by an unrelenting passion for promoting health and well-being, our team is wholly committed to curating exceptional content and immersive experiences.