As soon as we burp after eating, excess pressure of air or gas in the stomach is discharged to the outside. To this end, the body briefly opens the opening to the stomach and the gas is effectively removed via the esophagus. Burping is therefore a completely natural process to keep the pressure in the stomach constant. It is possible that stomach acid is released during burping. In that case, gas formed in the gastrointestinal tract is belched and takes a small amount of stomach acid with it as it passes through the stomach fluid. This can be unpleasant as the acid burns slightly in the esophagus. What can you do about chronic acid reflux?
- Function of stomach acid
- Often acid reflux or reflux
- What could the complaints be?
- What can you do to reduce the complaints?
Function of stomach acid
Once we eat and food enters the body, that food is captured by the stomach. Gastric juices in the form of stomach acid are active in the stomach. This acid has the following functions:
- neutralizing bacteria in food;
- it breaks down the main structure of proteins and chemical carriers of DNA in the food;
- produces an enzyme to break down protein chains into amino acids.
The stomach acid ensures important conversion of food before it is further processed with bile in the intestines. The processing of food also produces gases, which can accumulate in the stomach. To remove this, one burps with the risk of belching.
Often acid reflux or reflux
Someone who regularly has acid reflux and may often have a burning sensation in the esophagus may suffer from a poorly closing transition from the esophagus to the stomach. Normally this opening is closed, except when food goes to the stomach. This prevents acid from flowing into the esophagus. This function does not work optimally for everyone and the opening is slightly ajar. Stomach acid can then flow back into the esophagus and that can feel very unpleasant. This burning sensation can occur regularly every day and during sleep. Due to the continuously increased acidity, this affects the esophagus, causing it to become irritated and inflamed.
What could the complaints be?
Acid reflux or acid reflux can cause a number of complications. Think of:
- a burning sensation in the esophagus;
- burping with sour food;
- having pain around and above the stomach area that can rise behind the breastbone at the level of the heart;
- having an esophageal spasm.
What can you do to reduce the complaints?
Having reflux of stomach acid or frequent acid reflux can be very uncomfortable. Relapse does not occur easily when standing or sitting upright, but the risk increases considerably during sleep. To reduce activity in the stomach and avoid belching, you can apply the following tips:
- take the last meal three to four hours before bedtime;
- limit the size of the meal. May eat small meals more often. This also improves the body’s metabolism, creating the conditions for a lighter weight;
- reduce intake of alcohol, coffee and avoid irritating foods. Think of spicy food or sour fruits;
- stop smoking;
- lose weight by following a healthy diet;
- Raise the bed at the head end by ten centimeters so that the bed is slightly inclined. The stomach acid then tends to remain in the stomach.
Follow these tips and the intensity of acid reflux will decrease, allowing the esophagus to recover.
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