Top Foods and Drinks that Cause Heartburn, Acid Reflux

03. 02. 2018

Suffering from heartburn? That tightness in the chest, burning in the throat and sour taste in the mouth is miserable. It might be time to take an antacid if you are already having an attack. But what can be done to avoid heartburn in the first place?

Sometimes heartburn can be controlled by avoiding the trigger foods which are more likely to cause acid reflux. Here are some of the most common heartburn trigger foods:

Acidic Fruits and Spicy Vegetables

Avoid fruits and vegetables that are highly acidic, pickled, or hot and spicy including citrus, tomatoes, raw onions, hot peppers, pickles and cranberries – as these can aggravate heartburn. Mashed potatoes, French fries and potato salad often contain additional fats and oils which can stir up gastric juices in your stomach, so try finding alternatives for these as well.

High-Fat Meats

Meat that is high in fat or that has been deep fried can cause the lower esophageal sphincter to relax and allow stomach acid to seep into the esophagus. Common culprits are marbled sirloin, ground beef, chicken nuggets and buffalo chicken wings.

Sweets and Junk Food

Everyone likes a treat, but sweets can turn sour if they cause heartburn. Avoid desserts that contain chocolate, like brownies, cake, doughnuts and high-fat butter cookies. Chips can also increase acid production, so limit your intake of junk food like potato chips, corn chips and high-fat snacks.

Acidic Beverages

Acidic beverages like orange juice, grapefruit juice, cranberry juice, tomato juice and lemonade can cause reflux. Coffee, tea, soda, wine and liquor can also contribute to heartburn, so limit your intake of these beverages as well. Water is an ideal choice as it can actually alleviate heartburn. Try adding cucumber or a fresh sprig of basil for a refreshing flavor.


Dairy is another common heartburn trigger. Try the low-fat or lactose-free versions of your favorite dairy products to see if that makes a difference.

Small changes in your diet can help alleviate heartburn. Do some experimenting and be sure to write down what foods you discover as your triggers. If you’re not under the care of a gastroenterologist, we can help you find a specialist in your area to help you manage your condition.

Related Articles:

How Alcohol Affects Reflux
Hidden Heartburn Triggers
Options for Relieving Heartburn

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