The stomach normally secretes acid that is essential in the digestive process. This acid helps in breaking down the food during digestion. When there is excess production of acid by the gastric glands of the stomach, it results in the condition known as acidity. Dyspepsia, heartburn and the formation of ulcers are some of the symptoms. It is more common in highly emotional and nervous individuals.
Common Causes of Acidity
1. Consumption of Alcohol
2. Highly spicy foodstuffs
3. Non-vegetarian diets
4. Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAID’s)
Symptoms of Acidity
The presence of the gastric juices help in digesting the food. If the hydrochloric acid present in the stomach increases in quantity, the condition is known as hyperacidity. It is this condition which gives rise to gastric (inflammation of the mucous membrane of the stomach) and ulcers-gastric, peptic and duodenal. Almost all these disease present some difficulty in diagnosis because of confused symptoms, unless there is a bleeding ulcer. Generally, the symptoms of dyspepsia appear.
Acidity is a serious disorder, which may further lead to problems like acid reflux and dyspepsia. Also, it may give rise to situations like constipation and food swallowing disorders. The person suffering from acidity is prone to pain while contraction of muscles and also, a sensation of pain in ears.
Precaution for Acidity
1. Do not eat just before going to bed.
2. Avoid raw salad of vegetables like onion, cabbage, radish, and peppers.
3. Drink plenty of water.
4. Chew the food properly. Do not eat in hurry.
5. Stop smoking and cut down on alcohol.
Home Remedies for Acidity
1. Boil few mint leaves in water, and drink a glass of this, just after meals.
2. Sucking on a piece of clove is another simple remedy. Also, jaggery, lemons, almonds and yogurt are all known to offer instant relief from acidity.
3. Ginger, with its anti-inflammatory properties is known to aid digestion. Either add it to your recipes, or buy powdered ginger in capsule forms.
4. Sip lemon water with sugar an hour before lunch to reduce uneasiness.
5. Chew a few holy basil (tulsi) leaves to get relief from burning, nausea and gas. It is an effective home remedy for acidity.
6. Mix a teaspoon of the juice of chebulic myroblan (Haritaki) with a teaspoon of Indian gooseberry (amla) and drink daily.
7. If possible, eat raw garlic. This is considered to be very effective in curing acidity.
8. Mix 2 tsp each of natural apple cider vinegar and raw honey in a glass of water and drink before meals, to prevent acidity or heartburn.
9. Mint juice or mint capsules containing peppermint oil are a good herbal remedy for treating acidity.
10. Consume half a glass of buttermilk, adding a tablespoon of coriander juice to it. This offers relief from stomach burn, acidity and indigestion.
Avoid Certain Food
If you know you are acidity prone, it does not make sense to consume certain foods. The intake of spicy foods, pickles and even fried food should be avoided and if you can’t avoid them; minimize their intake. If you are in the habit of consuming food with high pectin content, avoid that too.