What is Heartburn?
The burning sensation we know as heartburn occurs when excess stomach acid enters the esophagus and causes irritation. Chest pain, a fullness in the throat or stomach and an intense burning sensation in the back of the throat are some of the symptoms of heartburn. If the symptoms persist or occur frequently, the issue could be the more serious Gastro-esophageal Reflux Disease, or GERD.
Your Diet and Heartburn
Heartburn isn't caused by your diet, but it can be aggravated by highly acidic foods, so avoid citrus (like lemon juice), tomatoes and chocolate. Caffeinated and carbonated beverages can also be problematic. Eating slowly, reducing your food portions and eating at least two hours before bedtime can also help reduce heartburn.
Foods to Keep
The best way to identify your "safe foods" (those that won't aggravate your heartburn) is to keep a food diary. But some generally safe choices include low-fat or fat-free cheeses, whole grain breads, broccoli, carrots, skinless chicken breasts and fish.
When selecting recipes, look for those that substitute smart choices for high-fat ingredients and those that avoid high-calorie cooking techniques like frying.