Nothing destroys a good meal like a debilitating bout of heartburn. Although over the counter meds are not generally ineffective, home remedies might help without having to experience the negative side effects of drugs. Heartburn can cause extreme discomfort with symptoms like: gas, bloating, flatulence, and even some seemingly unrelated symptoms like trouble swallowing, hoarseness, chronic coughing, and wheezing. Whether you have overindulged in a banquet of spicy foods or just a single moderate meal, these five natural herbs may help soothe heartburn.
Aloe vera soothes and heals
This wonder plant has powerful antibacterial properties that soothes the whole digestive tract and helps appropriate digestion. Digestive acids are released by the stomach in order to properly break down meals. The interior layer of the stomach is covered using a unique liner to stop the stomach from being damaged by the effects of digestive acids. Yet the esophagus, which transfers food to the stomach, isn’t covered with this protective liner. Thus, during acid reflux, a sensation of burning is experienced in the throat. When the gastric acids flow back to the esophagus, sensitive muscles are subjected to the acids creating the irritation known as heartburn.
The natural healing property of aloe vera offers relief from irritation and soothes the whole esophagus tract. Studies show that Aloe gel includes polysaccharides and glycoproteins. Polysaccharides are proven to fix skin cells and stimulate skin development while glycoproteins help impede discomfort and inflammation improving the rate of healing. Polysaccharides also help improve the digestion of food.
Slippery elm for Heartburn
Despite little research, slippery elm has been utilized for centuries in herbal treatments to treat various illnesses. The inner bark is used when creating herbal remedies. The bark contains mucilage, a starchy carb material that swells up when mixed with water to form a slick gel. The University of Maryland Medical Center states that slippery elm also seems to improve mucus production inside the digestive tract, which soothes, farther coats, soothes and heals irritated tissues. Dr. Blum adds, “slippery elm extract thickens the layer of mucous lining the gut, creating a more powerful barrier against acid.”
Licorice (DGL) for Acid Reflux
A powerful natural remedy for ulcers, licorice root, may also be a powerful acid reflux treatment, of which heartburn is a symptom. A Seattle based physician with an additional degree as a medical herbalist, Dr. Astrid Pujari, writes of the benefits of licorice in a column called Yours in Health:
“In herbal medicine, the root of the licorice plant is used to help soothe and release spasms from the digestive tract, among other things. DGL is pretty interesting, because in the lab it seems to increase mucous production and grow the cells lining the stomach. These are the natural protective mechanisms the body uses to protect itself against stomach acid. So the idea is that DGL may enhance the body’s own natural defense mechanisms, which could prevent or reduce problems related to acid such as heartburn.”