Acid Reflux can be reduced and to a large extent eliminated from your life by the use of safe and affordable herbal remedies. Herbal remedies help in controlling acid reflux by alkalizing the digestive system and also by reducing the production of digestive acids. Some of the herbs made popular for treating acid reflux also help in increasing the production of saliva in the mouth to improve the overall digestive process.
Here, we give an almost exhaustive list of herbs that can be used to treat acid reflux and to enhance digestion.
Herbal Remedies For Treating Acid Reflux
The scientific name of licorice is Glycyrrhiza glabra and the herb is found predominantly in Asia and in parts of Europe. The main components present in Licorice include – glycyrrhizic acid, glycyrrhizinic acid and glycyrrhetinic acid. Licorice is used to treat Acid Reflux as these compounds found in the herb help in increasing mucus production and in decreasing acid secretion in the body. Due to these properties, Licorice is also used to treat stomach and duodenal ulcers. Licorice is available in the following forms in the market – dried roots, powder, oil and tincture.
Papaya is scientifically known as Carica papaya and is a tree like herbal plant. Papaya is also used as an effective herb for treating acid reflux. Papaya works by stimulating the appetite and by improving the digestive process. The herb contains the phytochemical known as Papain which acts as a digestive enzyme and neutralizes the acid production in the stomach. Apart from Acid Reflux, papaya is also used to treat heartburn and bowel inflammation. Papaya is available in the market in tablet form for treating digestive problems.
Fenugreek is a very popular and commonly found plant in Asia that is used as an herb, spice and as a vegetable. Fenugreek is available in the following forms in the market – dried & fresh seeds and as capsules.
Fenugreek helps in controlling the acid levels of the stomach and often works best when it is combined with other herbs.
Agrimony is also known as Agrimonia and it belongs to the Rosaceae family. The herb was used in Ancient Greece to treat disorders related to the stomach, gallbladder and liver. May be for this reason, some claim that Agrimony can be used to treat Acid Reflux. For best results, Agrimony is often used in combination with Chamomile and Fenugreek seeds.
Wood Betony or Bishopswort can also be used to treat extreme cases of Acid Reflux. Wood Betony is scientifically known as Stachys officinalis. During the Middle Ages, it was claimed that Wood Betony can be used to cure nearly fifty different types of ailments. Wood Betony is often used along with Fenugreek seed to decrease the secretion of acid in the stomach. Betony tea is made by pouring boiling water over the dried powdered herb.
There are many different types of Chamomile species. German Chamomile is perhaps the most popular of the lot and is used to make the famous Chamomile tea. Chamomile is scientifically known as Matricaria recutita. In a recently conducted scientific study, it was found that Chamomile works similar to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
The herb also has the following other properties – antiseptic, antispasmodic and carminative. Many studies have shown that Chamomile can be used effectively to treat stomach related disorders and stomach ache.
Hyssop is scientifically known as Hyssopus officinalis and is an aromatic herb. Supporters of Hyssop claim that the herb protects the lining of the stomach and therefore helps in reducing acid reflux and heartburn symptoms. Hyssop has the following properties – expectorant, antiseptic and cough suppressant. Hyssop has the following important components – tannins, thujone and phenol. Hyssop tea can be made with the dried herb and is often considered tasty as it has a minty aroma.
Marshmallow is scientifically known as Althaea officinalis and is also known by the following other names – March Mallow and White Mallow. Marshmallow roots are used to make sweets and herbal medicines. Marshmallow root is popularly used to treat Acid Reflux as it helps to treat inflammation and ulceration of the digestive and gastrointestinal tract. The herb works as it has polysaccharides that often form a protective layer over any inflamed tissue in the body.
Slippery Elm is scientifically known as Ulmus fulva and has extreme anti-inflammatory properties. For this very reason, Slippery Elm is often used to treat inflammation and ulcers of the digestive tract.
When the mucilage content of the herb is mixed with water it forms a slick gel that coats the lining of the digestive system. The herb also helps in increasing the mucus production by causing reflux stimulation of nerve endings in the digestive tract. As a result of increased mucus secretion, the problem of excess acidity often gets solved.
Ginger is a very popular and commonly found herb and is scientifically known as Zingiber officinale. Ginger contains nine important compounds that help in the gastrointestinal process by binding to the human serotonin receptors. Ginger contains zingerone, shogaols and gingerols and has the following important properties – analgesic, sedative, antibacterial and sialagogue. The sialagogue property of this herb allows the body to produce more saliva and this helps in controlling the acid levels of the stomach.
This herb is known for its rejuvenating, healing and soothing properties. The juice of Aloe Vera is often marketed as an effective herbal aid for digestion. Many claim that Aloe Vera juice can be used to treat an upset stomach and even bowel inflammation. There is, however, no scientific evidence to prove these claims.
Also, Aloe Vera extracts taken in large doses can have side effects and can be poisonous at times. However, there is some scientific evidence that this herb can be effective against ulcerative colitis. Proponents of Aloe Vera claim that mixing an ounce of market-available Aloe Vera juice with two ounces of water can effectively treat the symptoms of Acid Reflux.
Apart from the above, the following different types of herbs also help in reducing and treating Acid Reflux in the body – Echinacea, Catnip, Geranium, Turmeric, Goldenseal, Angelica Root, Cancer Bush, Gentian Root and Meadowsweet.
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