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While pregnancy is the beginning of a beautiful journey, it does come with some discomfort like acidity. Thus, knowing the best natural home remedies for pregnancy heartburn relief can be a big help for many.
According to a National Library of Medicine study, approximately 26% of pregnant women experience GERD symptoms during the 1st trimester. The number rises to 36% in the 2nd and 51% in the 3rd trimester.
Yes, it’s quite common and could make life super uncomfortable!
To help you out, we have created a list of effective pregnancy heartburn home remedies to help with acidity during these months.
Luckily, most of these natural tips and foods offer quick relief from acidity in pregnancy, so you can stop feeling like an acid-filled volcano about to explode at any moment!
But before sharing the remedies for pregnancy heartburn, let’s first address the causes.
What Causes Pregnancy Heartburn?
Pregnancy heartburn — also known as gastric reflux or GERD — is a condition in which stomach acid rises through the esophagus into the throat. It’s the body’s natural response (reflex action) when the valve in the stomach and esophagus pathway doesn’t close properly, causing stomach contents to leak back up into your esophagus.
This causes a burning feeling in the throat and chest. And while it’s not a serious health risk for most women, it can cause severe discomfort and make eating difficult for those who experience it.
Other causes of pregnancy heartburn include:
- Hormonal changes in your body (this is why it tends to happen in the later stages of pregnancy)
- Having too much stomach acid
- Being dehydrated or drinking too much caffeine (this can contribute to heartburn symptoms)
Read More: How to Enjoy 2nd Trimester of Pregnancy
18 Best Home Remedies For Pregnancy Heartburn
Although over-the-counter drugs are also useful for dealing with acidity, they may not always be the ideal solution. That’s why going towards the safe road of home remedies is a smart choice to make.
Here are some best home remedies for pregnancy heartburn relief that most women live by and have tried and tested at home.
1. Make sure you’re drinking enough water
When pregnant, it’s essential to drink ample water or up your fluid intake during the day. Otherwise, you may experience dehydration which is a significant cause of dizziness, fatigue, and even heartburn.
In addition, water is essential to produce enough digestive juices for proper digestion. Thus, drink at least eight glasses of water daily!
2. Try a drink with apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar also helps with pregnancy heartburn relief. It can alleviate the effects of high acidity levels in your body, thanks to the abundant acetic acid content, promoting better digestion.
If you want to use this food for pregnancy heartburn relief, simply pour 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar into a cup of warm water and consume it before bedtime.
Read More: 9 Best Pregnancy Yeast Infection Treatments
3. Make the most of lemon water
Lemon juice has natural antacids with the power to neutralize any acid build-up in your stomach, which is often caused when you eat foods high in fat or sodium content. Lemon water is a perfectly simple home remedy that helps with acid reflux. All you need to do is squeeze one tablespoon of lemon juice into a glass of water and drink it before every meal!
4. Get sufficient rest at night
Lack of sleep leads to an increase in cortisol levels (aka the stress hormone) which directly impacts the production of stomach acid. Not getting sufficient rest could cause inflammation in mommies-to-be and make the nights restless.
If you remain awake, you might give in to your midnight cravings and load up on junk foods. This habit not only increases weight or causes hormone imbalance but is also one of the biggest causes of pregnancy heartburn. Hence, ensure you sleep for at least 7 to 8 hours every night.
5. Check your sleep position
If you’re pregnant, the worst sleep position is lying in a supine form or flat on your back. It not only presses the internal organs against the placenta, depriving the little one of oxygen but can also worsen symptoms of GERD during pregnancy, according to Sleep Foundation.
The best sleep position to help with pregnancy heartburn relief is lying on your left side. This style can reduce the pressure on the stomach, relieving the acidity episodes. Moreover, it is also great for liver health and boosts circulation to the baby’s developing organs.
6. Be careful about how much you eat
Eating large meals can put too much pressure on the stomach, making it harder to digest. The more work your gut does, the more likely you’ll have some discomfort. Eating small portions instead of one large meal helps is among the best remedies for pregnancy heartburn symptoms.
But this does not mean you should starve yourself! Instead, several minimal healthy meals at short intervals of time throughout the day can get you enough nutrients without pressuring your digestive system.
7. Drink ginger tea before bedtime
Ginger has traditionally been used to relieve inflammation and as a potent digestive aid. Ginger tea is also among the most powerful home remedies for pregnancy heartburn relief and nausea.
Brew yourself a cup of ginger tea with fresh ginger root or sip on some ginger ale for quick help from pregnancy heartburn. However, you may want to practice caution as it’s only suitable for occasional use and may not be ideal as a long-term solution.
8. Try a mixture of milk and honey
Drinking milk with honey is one of the most effective remedies for pregnancy heartburn. This solution helps neutralize the acids in your stomach, alleviating the pain and burning sensation caused by acid reflux in pregnancy.
Plus, it’s super delicious!
According to a 2013 study published by the Indian Journal of Medical Research, the dense texture of honey forms a mucosal lining in the esophagus membrane, keeping the acidity under control. Additionally, the combination of calcium and sugar further regulates the acid in your stomach and makes you feel better.
9. Enjoy the benefits of coconut water
Drinking coconut water is a traditionally acclaimed remedy for heartburn and other digestive issues. It’s full of calcium, potassium, magnesium, and sodium, which can help relieve gas and bloating caused by indigestion. Plus, coconut water regulates the body’s pH, which reduces acidity while pregnant. You can mix it into smoothies or even drink it directly!
10. Chew on gum when acidity hits hard
If your heartburn is worsening, try chewing gum every hour or so. It might help your system catch up by slowing down the production of stomach acid.
According to the Journal of Dental Research, chewing sugar-free gum for 30 minutes after a meal is one of the most valuable remedies against pregnancy heartburn. Chewing gum also increases saliva production in your mouth, alleviating symptoms of dry mouth caused by pregnancy hormones.
11. Add enzyme-rich fruits to your diet plan
Digestive enzymes are known to help with pregnancy acid reflux. While many pregnant women opt for digestive enzyme prenatal supplements, it’s always a good idea to go for a natural addition to the diet.
For example, pineapple contains bromelain – an enzyme that reduces inflammation in the body. So eating a slice or two of pineapple might make your heartburn disappear. Similarly, grapefruit is one of the best remedies for pregnancy heartburn relief. That’s because it has a natural enzyme called naringenin that reduces acid production in the stomach and eases the burning sensation.
12. Ensure you’re physically active every day
Exercising during pregnancy is extremely important as it can help with pregnancy heartburn and, at the same time, keep your body healthy.
Walking, swimming, yoga — whatever exercise you choose, try doing it at least 3 times per week for 20 minutes. This will keep you fit and help with pregnancy heartburn attacks.
Before starting any new exercise routine, make sure it is safe to do during pregnancy. Also, remember not to overdo it as you don’t want to stress out further. To be safe, you may want to ask your gynecologist before starting a new exercise or making any changes in your exercise routine.
Read More: 19 Risky Pregnancy Infections
13. Avoid wearing tight clothes
Wearing tight clothes can worsen pregnancy heartburn symptoms. Such dresses might cause pressure on the abdominal region, pushing the food from the tummy upward to the esophagus and thus, leading to heartburn. So always try to wear loose clothes.
14. Drink up aloe vera juice
Aloe vera juice is also among the best remedies for pregnancy heartburn relief. It might help soothe an irritated stomach during heartburn attacks when you’re pregnant, thanks to the natural enzymes which prevent inflammation caused by acid reflux into your esophagus.
The National Institute of Health also suggests that sipping an aloe vera juice may provide a safe and effective treatment for reducing GERD symptoms such as heartburn, nausea, vomiting, belching, and acid regurgitation.
15. Avoid eating lots of spicy foods
You may get sudden cravings during pregnancy to eat lots of spicy foods. But while it could satiate the hunger pangs, spicy foods in pregnancy may also cause severe heartburn, per Baby Center. Also, if you want to eat spicy foods, it’s best not to consume them before bedtime as they may require time to get digested properly.
16. Sit up straight when you eat
One of the simplest yet most effective home remedies for pregnancy heartburn is sitting up straight when you eat. You might feel like slouching and leaning over the table makes it easier to eat or drink, but that’s not true.
If you’re hunched over, your stomach will take up more space, putting pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter (the valve that keeps stomach acid from backing up into your esophagus), leading to heartburn.
Sitting up straight while eating is great for digestion because it opens up the ribcage and improves blood flow to the digestive system. It also helps keep bad posture habits from becoming a habit – always a plus!
17. Be mindful of your dinner hours
Studies show that the best time to have dinner is at least 3 hours before bedtime, and avoid consuming anything that could aggravate acid reflux in pregnancy. It’s also necessary to eat foods that help with pregnancy heartburn.
18. Avoid alcohol, caffeine, or smoking
Coffee, alcohol, and smoking are the culprits that could trigger pregnancy heartburn. Both smoking and alcohol can be detrimental to your baby’s health as well.
What are the Best Foods For Pregnancy Heartburn Relief?
While suffering from pregnancy heartburn, eating anything without feeling like your esophagus is on fire can be challenging. But don’t give up! There are plenty of foods for pregnancy heartburn relief.
Let’s check them out.
- Yogurt: It contains lactic acid, which helps neutralize stomach acids and fight off heartburn. Choose low-fat varieties because those have less sugar than full-fat versions of this delicious treat.
- Watermelon: Watermelons are high in water content, which hydrates and washes out toxins in your body. As a result, it may ease heartburn problems when pregnant. However, ensure you eat a moderate amount as too much watermelon could cause diarrhea or constipation.
- Bananas: Bananas contain bromelain, which helps reduce gut inflammation. So next time you feel that familiar burn in your chest, eat a banana!
- Almonds: They are high in magnesium. This compound may help relax the esophagus and stomach wall muscles while reducing acid production in those areas.
- Crackers: Crackers are also suitable for relieving heartburn because they neutralize acids in your stomach.
- Fermented foods: Fermented foods such as kombucha, kimchi, sauerkraut, pickles, and yogurt contain probiotics that are useful during pregnancy heartburn by treating stress and balancing gut bacteria.
Pregnancy GERD/Heartburn Recipes
If you believe you can only eat bland tasteless foods for pregnancy heartburn relief, think again. But there’s no reason why you can’t enjoy a delicious meal while managing the symptoms.
We’ve rounded up three of the best recipes that soothe pregnancy heartburn, are easy to make, and are delicious to the taste buds!
- Baked Chicken Meatballs
Baked chicken meatballs are a great way to help with pregnancy heartburn as they are packed with many benefits. They contain protein necessary for proper digestion and nutrients that support immune function during pregnancy.
Here’s how you can make delicious meatballs.
They’re easy to make, and you can freeze them for later, making them a perfect option for a quick dinner on lazy nights.
- Strawberry Banana Smoothie
A strawberry banana smoothie is also an excellent dish to help with pregnancy heartburn because it’s packed with potassium. This mineral helps neutralize acids in the digestive tract and reduce irritation in the esophagus caused by stomach acid.
Bananas are also high in potassium and magnesium, which are great for easing discomfort from muscle spasms and cramps.
Here’s how you can make the healthiest strawberry banana smoothie.
- Lentil and Chickpea Soup
Lentils and chickpeas are packed with protein and fiber, filling you up faster and keeping your blood sugar from spiking. They also contain magnesium which is critical for relaxing the gut muscles and preventing regurgitation from the stomach to the esophagus.
This soup is a great choice when looking for ways to treat or prevent GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), particularly during chilly weather.
Here’s how you can make the best lentils and chickpeas soup.
If you’ve been struggling with acidity and want some relief, try some of the remedies for pregnancy heartburn discussed above. You might find one that works best for you or some foods that help with pregnancy acid reflux.
Please also share proven remedies you have tried for acidity in pregnancy in the comments below.