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Categories > Digestive Disorders > Heartburn

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Test your heartburn knowledge

Top trigger foods

Alleviate GERD by steering clear of these common culprits:

  • alcohol
  • caffeine
  • chocolate
  • cigarettes
  • citrus fruits
  • fried foods
  • garlic
  • mint
  • onion

You eat a greasy burger and fries and chase it down with a big soda. Soon, you feel the burning pain in your chest known as heartburn. If you have heartburn or acid indigestion more than twice a week, it’s known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). The condition occurs when the sphincter muscle separating the esophagus from the stomach doesn’t close properly, allowing stomach contents (including acid) to rise up into the esophagus, causing a burning sensation in the chest or a bitter taste in the mouth. If left untreated, GERD can lead to more serious conditions, including esophageal cancer. Test your knowledge about this common, treatable condition:

1. Which of the following is not regularly confused with GERD?
 stiff neck
 asthma
 laryngitis
 chest pain
2. What can you do at home to help alleviate your GERD symptoms?
 wash your hands frequently
 eat softer foods
 maintain a healthy weight
 go to sleep early
3. What treatment is often recommended for new GERD patients?
 antacids
 proton pump inhibitors
 antidepressants
 surgery
4. True or false: Chewing gum makes heartburn worse.
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