Making Your Kitchen GERD-Friendly

When you have GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease), you get used to living with heartburn. While there are treatments available for GERD, making changes in your kitchen can make a big difference. Learning which foods trigger your heartburn, and making small changes in how you prepare your meals, can make a big impact on how you feel.

Many foods and beverages are triggers for heartburn. These include alcohol, carbonated and caffeinated beverages and whole milk or butter. Citric fruits, spicy, fried or greasy foods and fatty foods are also common culprits. Some people have problems with foods like garlic, onions, chocolate or tomatoes. Many people find it helpful to keep a food diary to pinpoint patterns of which foods trigger their heartburn.

Once you find patterns of trouble foods, work on limiting them. Focus on options that allow you to bake, broil or steam dishes rather than fry them. You can also incorporate changes like using skim milk in place of whole milk or avoid cooking with butter.

Changing your cooking does not have to lead to a bland diet. Use non-citrus juices, bagels or cereal with skim milk for breakfast, and turkey sandwiches, salads and baked fish or poultry for lunch. Baked or mashed potatoes, pasta, rice and vegetables can make great accompaniments for dinner. Snack on low-fat yogurt, fruit, graham crackers or pretzels, and try angel food cake, low-fat cookies or low-fat ice cream to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Small changes make a big difference to heartburn symptoms. Many cookbooks are available in the Atlanta area that can infuse new ideas into your cooking, and some trial and error will lead you to foods that suit you well. Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease responds well when you eliminate the foods that spur your heartburn and make modifications to the way you prepare your food.

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