Nutrition Month Insights: Holistic GERD Management Tips

Nutrition Month Insights: Holistic GERD Management Tips

Published on Tuesday, March 05, 2024 by Emily Hamm

Taking a Holistic Approach to Managing GERD: Beyond Diet Tips

March marks National Nutrition Month, and this year, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is championing a holistic approach to nutrition, extending beyond just what's on your plate. Regardless of your dietary needs or restrictions, this concept is accessible to everyone. Dealing with GERD can feel overwhelming, leaving you frustrated and unsure of how to lead a healthy lifestyle. But fear not – we're here to offer simple yet effective strategies to manage GERD with a holistic approach beyond just food choices. Join us as we explore ways to enhance your overall well-being and find relief from GERD symptoms.

#1-  Enjoy Time Outside: 

When it is nice out, try to go for a walk after meals. This is a great time to connect with family, friends, or even your pet. It’s a great way to help promote digestion and manage stress, which can significantly improve GERD symptoms.

#2- Opt for Locally Sourced Foods: 

Most towns have a farmers market that occurs weekly. This is a great way to support local farmers and find fresh, low-processed foods to enjoy. Check to see what produce is in season when you’re going shopping. Consuming foods that are less processed, like fresh fruits and vegetables, are much better for your health, not to mention the fiber is an added benefit as fiber helps improve digestion and may reduce GERD symptoms as well through weight management and management of other chronic health conditions like hypertension and diabetes.

GERD-Friendly Vegetables and Fruits

Vegetables: Broccoli, cauliflower, leeks, mushrooms, parsnips, potatoes, radishes, rutabagas, turnips, asparagus, peas, beets, cucumbers, green beans, spinach

Fruits: bananas, apricots, berries, cherries, melons, peaches, plums

#3- Enjoy Meals with Your Family or Friends at the Dinner Table: 

I know it is common for people to eat on the go or quickly at the computer. Try to make new habits and take intentional time to enjoy your meal. Savor bites of food and chew slowly, thinking about the flavors and textures. This helps to connect your mind and body so that you eat mindfully, avoiding overeating. Creating this habit also helps reduce overall stress as it enables you to build a calming space to think and clear your mind.

#4- Establish a Consistent Routine: 

Establishing a consistent routine may be easier for some, but regular eating will help your body regulate hunger and satiety better and promote better digestion. It will also prevent those late-night binges before bedtime that may worsen reflux symptoms.  

Here is an example of a daily routine that may work for you! Feel free to take this and make it your own.

#5- Seek Professional Guidance: 

Work with a registered dietitian to obtain further counseling/resources on managing GERD. This is an excellent idea if you have difficulty finding what is triggering your GERD symptoms and finding foods to alleviate your symptoms. Dietitians can work one-on-one with people to help identify triggers, look for solutions, and manage progress along your journey.

#6- Access Additional Resources: 

Consider exploring various resources available for managing GERD, regardless of your financial situation. Hiring a personal chef to create customized meal plans or recipes tailored to your dietary needs can be beneficial if feasible. Alternatively, look for cookbooks specifically designed with GERD in mind, which may offer affordable and accessible meal ideas. Additionally, explore online resources such as blogs or websites focused on nutrition and GERD, which can provide valuable information and support for managing your condition. You can find additional strategies to effectively manage GERD by utilizing these diverse resources.

* is a great place to start looking for fun and nutritious recipes from our experts!

  • GERD-friendly version of the Elvis smoothie
  • GERD-friendly beverage options
  • GERD-friendly spaghetti option

  • BONUS: Crafting a GERD-Friendly Plate: 

    Let’s talk about building a GERD-friendly, NUTRITIOUS plate at mealtime! MyPlate is an easy way to figure out where food groups belong on your plate and ensure you have a balanced meal. This resource can help you focus on getting the right portions of protein, fiber, carbohydrates, and fat to promote optimal health. 

    Incorporating GERD-friendly foods into your diet can be simple and delicious, following the principles of MyPlate. For protein sources, opt for lean options like 3-4 ounces of baked skinless chicken breast seasoned with herbs or a freshly baked salmon filet. Non-starchy vegetables offer a variety of options, such as a generous salad comprising mixed greens, carrots, beans, low-fat cheese, cucumbers, and radishes tossed with a light oil and vinegar dressing, or servings of cooked green beans, carrots, squash, zucchini, or eggplant. For starchy carbohydrates, consider including half a baked potato or sweet potato, half a cup of brown rice, quinoa, or other high-fiber whole grains, or a serving of butternut squash or other winter squash. 

    Incorporating fruits like half a cup of low-acidic options such as berries, bananas, apples, grapes, or melon can add natural sweetness. Opt for water or non-carbonated beverages, and enjoy warm decaffeinated teas like ginger or chamomile. Healthy fats can be obtained from low-fat dairy products such as yogurt, cheese, or milk and by cooking with olive oil. These GERD-friendly choices support digestive health and offer a satisfying and nutritious way to nourish your body.

    Micronutrients for GERD: A Key Component of Optimal Health

    Your diet is the best place to start with obtaining the correct micronutrients to achieve optimal health; however, you may benefit from additional nutrients. Talk with your healthcare provider about checking your vitamin B levels. Medications like proton pump inhibitors and H2 antagonists can lead to vitamin B deficiencies or impaired absorption of these nutrients. You may benefit from additional supplementation to obtain normal levels.

    Supplement Options for GERD Relief:

    Melatonin – 3-5 mg daily may be beneficial in alleviating GERD symptoms in conjunction with diet and lifestyle modifications and medication use.

    Gingerpromotes digestion and reduces unpleasant gastrointestinal symptoms, such as bloating and nausea; you can use this in cooking or drinking tea. You may also take this in capsules.

    Probiotics- can help replenish good gut bacteria. You may need these if you have recently had a stomach virus or infection like small bacterial overgrowth or H.Pylori.

    Concluding Thoughts on Holistic GERD Management

    In conclusion, by adopting a holistic approach to managing GERD beyond mere dietary adjustments, individuals can enhance their overall well-being and relieve symptoms. Incorporating lifestyle changes, seeking professional guidance, and accessing additional resources are integral to achieving long-term health and comfort. Remember, small changes can significantly improve GERD management, empowering individuals to live healthier, more fulfilling lives.


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