Eating, Diet, & Nutrition for GER & GERD

How can changes in my eating habits improve GERD symptoms?

If you have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and you are overweight or have obesity, your doctor may suggest losing weight to reduce your GERD symptoms. Your doctor can recommend a healthy eating plan to help you lose weight.

If you have GERD symptoms at night or when you’re lying down, eating meals at least 3 hours before you lie down or go to bed may improve symptoms.2

What should I avoid eating if I have GERD symptoms?

Some people who have GERD find that certain foods or drinks trigger symptoms or make symptoms worse. Foods and drinks that have been commonly linked to GERD symptoms include

  • acidic foods, such as citrus fruits and tomatoes
  • alcoholic drinks
  • chocolate
  • coffee and other sources of caffeine
  • high-fat foods
  • mint
  • spicy foods

Talk with your doctor about your diet and foods or drinks that seem to increase your symptoms. Your doctor may recommend reducing or avoiding certain foods or drinks to see if GERD symptoms improve.

Doctor recording the weight of a patient who has obesity.If you are overweight or have obesity, your doctor may suggest losing weight to reduce your GERD symptoms.

References

July 2020
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This content is provided as a service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), part of the National Institutes of Health. The NIDDK translates and disseminates research findings to increase knowledge and understanding about health and disease among patients, health professionals, and the public. Content produced by the NIDDK is carefully reviewed by NIDDK scientists and other experts.