The Connection Between Losing Weight and Heartburn

If you suffer from frequent heartburn and are overweight, losing weight may resolve your heartburn symptoms. What does heartburn have to do with body weight?

While research has shown that body weight and BMI are linked to the risk of heartburn and GERD, it isn’t exactly clear why being overweight makes people more likely to suffer from acid reflux. There may, in fact, be several factors involved.

Some scientists believe that added pressure on the stomach from excess body weight contributes to acid reflux. Obesity has also been linked to slower stomach dumping, which allows more time for acid to build up in the stomach. Eating large portions, which may be one cause of obesity, can also cause acid reflux.

One thing is clear: losing weight can lead to long-term heartburn relief. Experts recommend setting a calorie goal that is appropriate for your age, sex, current weight and activity level. Your physician can help you determine how many calories you should consume for a safe rate of weight loss.

In addition to reducing your calories, you can also help prevent heartburn by eating smaller meals and eating more slowly. Eating small meals every three or four hours can help you lose weight while also reducing stomach acid levels and stomach pressure that can contribute to acid reflux and heartburn.

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