Five health habits may help keep acid reflux at bay

Lifestyle changes may help to prevent symptoms related to gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), according to a research letter published online Jan. 4, 2021, by JAMA Internal Medicine.

Using data from the Nurses’ Health Study II, a nationwide study that included 116,671 women, researchers found that among 9,000 women who had GERD symptoms, those who met five specific anti-reflux lifestyle criteria were 40% less likely to have GERD symptoms than women who did not meet any of them.

These were having a normal body weight; never smoking; participating in 30 minutes of moderate or vigorous exercise each day; drinking no more than two cups of coffee, tea, or soda each day; and following a healthy diet. GERD symptoms were defined as reporting acid reflux or heartburn at least once a week.

The findings were based on the results of periodic surveys filled out by women in the study. The first GERD survey was collected in 2007, and the women in the GERD portion of the study were followed until June 2017. While women who met all five components of the anti-reflux lifestyle saw the greatest reduction in GERD symptoms, there was a reduction in symptoms for each of the five lifestyle elements on its own. So even small changes may help.

Bible verses for today’s meditation and inspiration: Matthew E. McLaren

Acts 4:18-31 And when they had summoned them, they commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered and said to them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to give heed to you rather than to God, you be the judge; for we cannot stop speaking about what we have seen and heard.”     

2 Chronicles 25:19 “You said, ‘Behold, you have defeated Edom.’ And your heart has become proud in boasting. Now stay at home; for why should you provoke trouble so that you, even you, would fall and Judah with you?”

1 Samuel 2:3 “Boast no more so very proudly, Do not let arrogance come out of your mouth; For the LORD is a God of knowledge, And with Him actions are weighed.

Proverbs 11:2 When pride comes, then comes dishonor, But with the humble is wisdom.

Proverbs 16:5 Everyone who is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD; Assuredly, he will not be unpunished.

Micah 2:3 Therefore thus says the LORD, “Behold, I am planning against this family a calamity From which you cannot remove your necks; And you will not walk haughtily, For it will be an evil time.

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