If you’re familiar with a burning feeling in your chest and a sour taste in your mouth after your meals, then you know the pain and discomfort that comes with having heartburn. While not a life-threatening condition, your heartburn can throw off your entire day and make you wonder what you ate that caused such a severe reaction.
Luckily, these five remedies will help heartburn sufferers feel relief from their symptoms, no matter how debilitating the reflux feels.
1. Eat a little baking soda
It almost sounds too simple to be helpful, but baking soda has a neutralizing effect that can help alleviate that burning feeling that makes heartburn painful. According to Everyday Roots, baking soda, or sodium bicarbonate, is a base substance with a pH higher than 7.0. When you drink a spoonful of baking soda mixed with water, it neutralizes stomach acid so you don’t feel a painful burning sensation if your acid reflux is causing you serious issues.
To perform this remedy, all you need is a teaspoon of baking soda and a glass of water that’s no more than 8 ounces. Stir in the baking soda and drink the mixture for immediate relief.
2. Drink apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has proven its worth year after year, and if you don’t have some of this magical tonic in your pantry, then it’s time to grab a bottle from the grocery store and keep it there. Though you may think that drinking vinegar would give you even more digestive issues and further irritate your esophagus, apple cider vinegar is actually an acidic substance that helps to add acid back into the stomach, says The Health Wyze Report.
Simply take a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar and drink it straight or add it to a glass of water, and drink the mixture. Just be sure to not take more than this, as too much can induce further stomach problems.
3. Drink lemon juice
There’s good news for you if you love citrus — lemon juice can help keep the pain of heartburn at bay when those over-the-counter products don’t seem to be working. SCD Lifestyle explains that lemons have a very strong acidic pH — it’s even stronger than vinegar. The lemon juice will help neutralize your heartburn by adding acid back into the stomach.
Juice one lemon into a glass, and drink it straight if you can. If this is too much for you, then dilute it with some water and drink that instead. You can drink this multiple times a day if your symptoms persist, but drinking the juice of about two lemons should be more than enough.
4. Grab some aloe juice
Aloe vera is a plant that’s known for its healing properties, so it only makes sense that the same plant that’s used to treat sunburns is the one that can also help heal your digestive system and heartburn. The juice of the plant has anti-inflammatory properties, says Healthline, and it can help give your digestive system the support and boost it needs.
Be wary that aloe juice can have a laxative effect on some people and should only be consumed in quantities of a ½ cup or less. Drinking it before meals is probably best.
5. Chew gum
This remedy may be another that seems too simple to be effective, but actually, chewing gum can really help relieve you of your heartburn symptoms. Anahad O’Connor for The New York Times explains that several recent studies have found that chewing on gum can help neutralize stomach acid.
A study performed by gastroenterologists at Veterans Affairs hospitals in New Mexico and Illinois found that that those who chewed sugarless gum for an hour after eating a big breakfast were found to have reduced their acid reflux symptoms dramatically. The study involved 36 people, some of whom were diagnosed with GERD and some whom who had no reported heartburn issues, and all participants were found to have lowered their acid reflux levels, especially those with heartburn. Just remember — sugary gum can damage your teeth, so pick the sugar-free varieties.