Our digestive system needs a little amount of hydrochloric acid along with other digestive juices so that the food that we eat gets broken down. Digestion done this way leads to the absorption of energies taken through food which is required for all our bodily functions. Acidity (acid dyspepsia) occurs when this hydrochloric acid in the stomach is produced in excess and also not used in digesting food. It then leads to various discomforts such as a general feeling of restlessness. There would be heartburn or acid reflex, and sometimes this feeling of nausea or even vomiting. You may even experience sour belching. Acidity can also cause severe constipation. Most of the time, acidity is due to poor diet habits and lack of body movement. While you may need to change your diet and lifestyle habits to completely get rid of acidity, here are some home remedies for acidity that may provide you some relief from the discomforts accompanied by acidity.
Home Remedies for Acidity
1. Spearmint for Acidity
If your acidity is due to indigestion, and which is the reason in most of the cases, you may use spearmint as a remedy for acidity. While mint leaves are said to be effective in curing indigestion, some experts believe that those suffering from heartburn should not use mint leaves. As it relaxes the esophageal valve, it can actually worsen the symptoms of heartburn. But because spearmint does not contain as much menthol as peppermint, it can be used in case of acidity caused due to indigestion. Spearmint actually helps relax your stomach muscles thereby reducing the symptoms of nausea and other digestive problems.
Make Mint Tea to Relieve Acidity
- Spearmint leaves- 5-8
- Hot water- 1 cups
- Honey (optional)- 1-2 tsp
- Place the mint leaves in a cup.
- Pour hot water over the leaves.
- Let it steep for about 5 minutes.
- You may strain or let the leaves be there in your tea.
- Add honey if you prefer sweetened tea.
- Have this tea after meals.
2. Coconut Water for Acidity
The water inside a tender coconut is a natural isotonic beverage having the same level of electrolytic balance as we have in our blood. It is, thus, a magical drink which is beneficial in various health conditions, including acidity. When you drink coconut water, the pH acidic level in your body turns alkaline which gives you instant relief from discomforts due to acidity. Additionally, coconut water has a host of nutrients in it- natural sugars, minerals like potassium, sodium, calcium, phosphorous, iron, copper, sulphur and chlorides, Vitamins of B group as well as ascorbic acid and small amounts of protein. Therefore, you not only get relief from acidity but also get nutritious treat when you drink the delicious coconut water!
How to Drink Coconut Water for Acidity?
You just need to get pure coconut water and drink this 3-4 times a day, may be a cup each time. Don’t forget to have a cup of coconut water in the morning even if you don’t plan to take it throughout the day. May be that’s all you need. Also take care not to get artificially sweetened or flavored packaged coconut water. You need the natural thing. If it’s available in your area, prefer having the water directly from tender coconuts.
3. Lemon Juice for Acidity
Lemon juice is a natural antacid! Lemon contains citric acid which changes your internal acidic environment into an alkaline one. Thus you get rid of acidity. Now you may have a doubt as to how does the acidic lemon juice becomes alkaline! Here’s the answer. In its natural form (read outside human body), lemon juice is an acidic substance whose pH is below 7. However, once it goes inside your body and is completely metabolized to dissociate its minerals in your bloodstream, it becomes alkalizing raising the pH of your body above 7 and thus making it alkaline.
Ways to Take Lemon Juice for Acidity
- Mix juice of half a lemon in a glass of warm water. Have it in the morning on an empty stomach. If needed, add some honey to this.
- Mix juice of ½ to 1 lemon in half a glass of water. Have this before meals. Add honey if needed. You may also add sugar.
4. Coriander for Acidity
Coriander is one of the favorite kitchen ingredients in many parts of the world, especially Asian countries. Coriander seeds are extensively used in Chinese and Indian medicine too. Europeans too make coriander tea to help treat indigestion and relieve acid reflux. Why is the question. The essential oils like Borneol and Linalool present in coriander seem to help digestion, and proper functioning of the liver. These oils, with all their aroma, help proper secretion of enzymes and digestive juices in your stomach and stimulate digestion and peristaltic movement. The bioactive compounds of coriander prevent nausea, vomiting, and other stomach disorders. And if your appetite has been suppressed due to continuous instances of acidity, you may be happy to know that fresh coriander leaves are excellent appetizers too! Many studies have found that coriander can reduce dyspepsia (indigestion) when added to your regular diet.
Ways to Use Coriander for Acidity
- Take some coriander leaves and crush them with the help of little water to get its juice. Mix 1 tablespoon of coriander leaves juice to a glass of buttermilk and have it after meals or 2-3 times a day. You may also have a coriander juice without mixing it with buttermilk.
- Make some tea with coriander seeds. Crush a tablespoon of coriander seeds. Place them in a pot. Pour a cup hot water over it and let it steep for 5-8 minutes. Strain and add honey if you need to sweeten it otherwise have this tea without honey 2-3 times a day, preferably after meals.
5. Cumin Seeds for Acidity
Cumin seeds belong to the Umbelliferae family, the same one to which belong caraway seeds, parsley, chervil and dill. These seeds, extensively used in Mexican, Spanish, Indian and Middle Eastern cooking, are rich in iron, manganese, and other minerals and vitamins. Many studies have shown cumin seeds to stimulate the production of pancreatic enzymes which helps digestion and thus keeps your acidity at bay. You also get rid of many symptoms associated with acidity such as nausea and vomiting.
Ways to Use Cumin Seeds for Acidity
- Take 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds and boil this in a glass of water for about 5-6 minutes. Let it cool down and then drink this.
- Dry roast some cumin seeds. When you get the aroma while roasting, it means they are done. Slightly crush a teaspoon of this roasted cumin seeds into a glass of water or buttermilk. You may strain or leave the seeds in the water or buttermilk. Have this after meals. Store the roasted cumin seeds in an airtight jar for future use.
- To get immediate relief from acidity, take a pinch-full of raw cumin seeds and chew them.
6. Buttermilk for Acidity
Traditional buttermilk, which is made by churning the curd in order to separate its butter or cream, is a good remedy for acidity. It is the liquid left over after extracting butter from churned yogurt. The lactic acid in buttermilk neutralizes the acidity in your stomach. It is extensively used in India, especially during summer months. It has lots of vitamins, potassium, calcium, and traces of phosphorus which makes it nutritious too. It is a very good and tasty natural drink to soothe stomach and alleviate stomach upsets. You may add such ingredients as asafoetida, coriander leaves, ginger, curry leaves and sea salt etc. to enhance its digestive properties.
Ways to Use Buttermilk for Acidity
- Take 1 tsp of fenugreek seeds and crush it with a little water to make a paste out of it. Add this to a glass of buttermilk and have it.
- Take 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice. Add this to a cup of buttermilk. Allow this to sit for about 5 minutes and then drink it.
- Add some black pepper powder to a glass of buttermilk and have it.
- Add a pinch of rock salt or black salt and a teaspoon of dry roasted cumin seeds powder to a glass of buttermilk and have it.
- Get 1 tsp of coriander leaf juice and add this to a glass of buttermilk. Have it.
7. Eat Bananas for Acidity
There are many foods that help cure acidity and heartburn. Banana is such a fruit. Bananas are very rich in Potassium which is an alkalizing mineral having a pH of 14. A ripe banana, thus, reduces the acidity in your stomach by raising its pH level. Not only this, bananas have such a chemical that stimulates your stomach lining to produce more mucus which protects your stomach from acids. This even prevents stomach ulcers. Bananas are also high on fiber which speeds up digestion. Thus include at least a banana in your daily diet so that you may get rid of acidity and heartburn caused by it.
Precaution- A few people develop heartburn as a reaction to eating bananas. This may be because the banana you eat is not an over ripe one. The potassium in an unripe banana is in the form of potassium nitrate that actually gives you heartburn. So, try having an over ripe banana, the one having brown spots on its peel. Its as tasty as a ripe banana!
8. Watermelon for Acidity
Foods with low acid levels are helpful in dealing with acidity. The lower the pH, the higher is the acidity in foods. Watermelon has higher pH of 9. Thus, it is very alkaline. A study conducted in 2011, 20 subjects with reflux said that they felt 95 percent improvement by following a strict low-acid diet. So, its a good idea to have watermelon and other low acid foods such as grapefruit, lettuce, broccoli and celery.
Ways to Eat Watermelon for Acidity
- Get ripe watermelon and cut it into bite size pieces. Store them in the refrigerator covered. Whenever you need to suppress the feeling of acidity or heartburn, just take out the bowl and eat 5-6 pieces of chilled watermelon. Do this throughout the day. Don’t consume a cut watermelon stored in refrigerator for more than three days.
- Blend the watermelon pieces it to make a refreshing drink and have it chilled.
- Add other fruits to watermelon to make a salad such as banana and grapefruit.
- Mix watermelon juice with coconut water and have it to get relief from acidity.
9. Fennel for Acidity
There is a tradition in India to chew some fennel seeds after meals. This, in fact, makes your digestion faster and also saves you from such conditions as acidity and heartburn, constipation, flatulence and bloating and not to forget indigestion. Fennel has a carminative property. It soothes your digestive tract and reduces acid and inflammation as well as gas and bloating. It has a variety of active constituents including volatile oil composed of such substances as fenchone, trans-anethole, limonene and a-pinene. All these substances give fennel herb its soothing effects. You may use the herb in all its forms- the extracted oil, seeds or even tincture made from it.
Ways to Use Fennel for Acidity
- Chew ¼ to ½ teaspoon of fennel seeds after meals.
- Add 1 tsp of fennel tincture to a cup of water and have it thrice a day.
- Consume ½ tsp of liquid extract of fennel every day.
- Make fennel tea by steeping 1 tsp of fennel seeds in a cup of hot water. Let it steep for 5-10 minutes. Strain and have it. It has a slight sweet taste so you need not add honey to this. You may actually decide not to strain the tea and have it while chewing the fennel seeds in it.
- Slice the white bottom part of fennel vegetable and make a salad by adding this to arugula and baby spinach.
10. Carom Seeds for Acidity
This is one of the best remedies for acidity, in fact, for all the problems related to stomach and digestion! These seeds boost the activity of digestive enzymes and also reduce the transmit time for food. Carom, also known as Bishop’s weed, has excellent digestive, antispasmodic, and carminative properties. Known as ajwain in India, carom seeds are an important part of Ayurvedic and Unani medicine. If you happen to be in India, you may find some fine herbal preparations made with carom seeds. One is ‘Ajwain-Arak’ which you can find in Kolkata city of India (where it is known as Jowan-er-arak) and the other one is Omum that you can find in South Indian states. Arak is like a tincture made with alcohol, carom seeds and water. Omum is the acqueous portion which is left after the essential oil is separated. You may, however, use carom seeds directly to cure your acidity and other digestive problems.
Ways to Use Carom Seeds for Acidity
- Take a teaspoon of carom seeds in your palm. Crush and press these seeds with your other palm. This releases the oils in the carom seeds. Now take this with a glass of water.
- Add a few drops of lemon juice and ginger juice to a tsp of carom seeds. Mix well and have it.
- If you can stand the strong bitter and somewhat peppery taste of carom seeds, you may even chew them after meals.
- If you can get ‘Ajwain Ark’, as mentioned above, take 1 tsp of this in a glass. Pour half a cup of water over it and have it, preferably after meals. You will feel the miraculous effect of this potion in just a few minutes.
- If you can get omum liquid, add 1 tsp of this with water and have it. For instant relief from acidity, mix 1 teaspoon of omum water with 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds. Add the two in a glass of water and boil for about 5-6 minutes. Have this when you feel the attack of acidity.
- Take some carom seeds (about 3-4 tablespoons or more). Add equal quantity of rock salt to this. Now grind them finely to get their powder. Store this powder in an air tight glass jar or bottle. Mix ¼ – ½ tsp of this powder in a cup of warm water and have it 2-3 times a day. If you so think, you can even have a pinch of this powder without mixing it with water.
11. Basil Leaves for Acidity
Basil, the holy tulsi leaves have many components that make them excellent digestive agent. These components in basil stimulate your stomach to create more mucous. Basil leaves have the ability to reduce the effect of peptic acids in the stomach. This prevents excessive acidity there. Not only acidity, basil leaves help cure gas and bloating too.
Ways to Use Basil Leaves for Acidity
- Take 5-6 basil leaves, wash them properly and chew them slowly, preferably after meals.
- Take 8-10 basil leaves, wash and crush them. Now add this basil paste to a glass of lukewarm water and have it. This reduces the pain that you get from acidity. It also helps relieve acidity as a whole.
12. Ginger for Acidity
Ginger is an alkalizing herb or food or spice whatever you like to call it. Your body is healthiest and comfortable when its pH remains between 7.35 and 7.45. The pH which is measured on a scale of 0 to 14 indicates how acidic or alkaline your body is. At 7.35 to 7.45 pH, your body is slightly alkaline which is good for tissues, cells and other organs. When you suffer from acidity, stomach acid also refluxes into the esophagus. Ginger stimulates saliva production which then washes away acid that has refluxed into the esophagus.
Make Ginger Tea for Relief from Acidity
- Fresh ginger- 1 inch piece
- Hot water- 1 cup
- Honey or sugar (optional)- as per taste
- Wash, peel and slice the ginger.
- Place ginger in a pot.
- Pour hot water over it.
- Let it steep for 5-10 minutes.
- Strain and add sweetener if required.
- Have it 2-3 times a day.
If you can’t stand ginger tea, there’s another way to take ginger in the form of powder but you need some more ingredients with it.
13. Acidity Remedy with Ginger Powder
- Ginger powder- 1 tsp
- Asafetida – a pinch
- Rock salt- a pinch
- Water- 1 cup
- Add ginger powder, asafetida and rock salt to the cup of water.
- Mix well.
- Have this.
- This may give you immediate relief from acidity.
14. Herbal Decoction for Acidity
You have know the therapeutic properties of many herbs and seeds above in the remedies for acidity. You now know that fennel or anise seeds, carom seeds, cumin etc. all are beneficial in getting relief from acidity. This herbal decoction uses some of such seeds to give you a power-packed remedy for your acidity problem.
- Coriander seed powder- 1 tsp
- Cumin seed powder- 1 tsp
- Fennel seed powder- 1 tsp
- Sugar- ½ tsp
- Water- ½ cup
- Mix all the seeds powder and sugar in half cup of water.
- Drink this on an empty stomach each morning to prevent and get relief from acidity.
The above home remedies for acidity are time tested and many people are using them effectively to counter acidity. However, because every body is different and reacts differently, some of these remedies may work for you while some others may not. Just try them out and you will sure know in sometime, what remedies for acidity is meant for your body!