Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a common digestive disorder that affects millions of people worldwide. Symptoms of GERD include:
● difficulty swallowing
● bad breath
● upper back pain
These symptoms can be caused by damage to or weakening of the lower esophageal sphincter (the gateway between your throat and your stomach). If the sphincter cannot close properly, corrosive stomach acids can flow back up (reflux) into the esophagus.
Many people with GERD turn to over-the-counter medications or prescription drugs to manage their symptoms.
However, some people may prefer to try natural remedies, such as ginger, to help alleviate their symptoms. But does ginger actually work to treat GERD?
What is Ginger?
Ginger is a plant native to Southeast Asia. Its root (called the ginger root) is often used as a spice or natural remedy.
Ginger has been used for a very long time in traditional medicine to treat a variety of ailments, including nausea, indigestion, and inflammation.
How Does Ginger Work to Treat GERD?
There are a few different ways that ginger may be able to help alleviate symptoms of GERD:
● Reducing inflammation: Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties, which may help reduce inflammation in the esophagus and stomach. This can help reduce the symptoms of GERD.
● Relaxing the muscles: Ginger may be able to relax the muscles in the esophagus and stomach, which can help prevent the relaxation of the lower esophageal sphincter and reduce the risk of acid reflux.
● Reducing acid production: Some studies have found that ginger may be able to reduce acid production in the stomach, which may help reduce the risk of acid reflux.
Ginger has been studied as a potential aid for several gastrointestinal disorders, but at this time, ginger has not been thoroughly studied as a treatment option for GERD.
Many individuals living with GERD report beneficial effects from using ginger, but no clinical trials have been performed to confirm or deny these claims.
Is Ginger Safe to Use for GERD?
Ginger is generally considered safe when consumed in small to moderate amounts. Using ginger as a spice to flavor your meals is a common way to consume ginger without much risk. But if you experience any side effects after taking ginger, discontinue use immediately and inform your doctor.
Ginger can also be found in the form of supplement pills and oils. These may carry some additional risk of an adverse reaction since they are generally more potent and concentrated.
Speak with your doctor or healthcare provider before using ginger (or any alternative treatment or supplement) to treat GERD, as it may interact with certain medications or cause side effects in some people. They may also recommend other proven treatments that are known to be safer and more effective for managing your condition.