Lifeboost Spells Relief For Coffee-Loving Heartburn Sufferers
One word: heartburn!
First, it's annoying and uncomfortable.
Then, with routine occurrences it becomes downright painful and discouraging.
You know the scene all too well. Roughly 30 minutes or so after you’ve finished a meal or enjoyed your morning cup of coffee, the burning sensation creeps up into your chest or throat and lingers there.
Perhaps it’s kept you up at night?
Perhaps it’s had you perusing the aisles of your local pharmacy, looking for chalky remedies?
Or, maybe you’ve even found yourself doing a cupboard cleanse at your doctor’s admonition, ditching some of your favorites (like coffee) to keep these awful symptoms at bay.
If you find yourself in that number, you’re not alone. Nearly 15 million Americans suffer from heartburn symptoms daily!
So, what is it? What causes it? And please, for the love of all things good and right in this world, tell me you don’t have to actually stop drinking coffee to get rid of heartburn!
We’ll cover all of those things here. And, spoiler alert: thankfully no, you won’t have to get rid of your beloved cup of joe to avoid the pain and discomfort of heartburn!
What Is Heartburn?
First, let’s get technical…
In the lower part of your esophagus is a band of muscle, a valve known as the lower esophageal sphincter.
This valve connects your esophagus to your stomach, and it essentially has two jobs.
- It allows food to enter into the stomach from the esophagus.
- It keeps digestive fluids, secreted by the stomach, from flowing back up into the esophagus.
Seen in action: When you swallow, the valve relaxes to allow food to enter your stomach, then it tightens again afterwards, keeping the contents in your stomach.
Unfortunately, when the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) doesn’t tighten properly, or it becomes weak, those digestive fluids can leak back into the esophagus causing pain and discomfort.
So now, let’s get practical…
What does heartburn feel like?
Some lesser symptoms of heartburn include:
- A sour, salty, or acidic taste in your mouth
- Feeling like something is lodged in your throat
But, the most common symptom associated with heartburn includes a mild to severe burning sensation or pain located in the chest, throat, or neck.
You see, the lining of your stomach is tough, designed to handle its acidic contents. Your esophagus though, its lining is far more delicate.
Therefore, since the digestive fluids that have leaked into your esophagus are acidic (we’re talking stomach acid here), you rightfully feel a burning sensation as those contents irritate the esophageal lining.
In instances of heartburn, this is often felt directly behind your breastbone or in your throat.
Though heartburn actually has nothing to do with your heart, thankfully, it gets its name due to the fact that the discomfort felt from these symptoms often centers around your lower chest or upper chest as it proceeds up your throat.
With heartburn, these uncomfortable sensations can last anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. And, they’re often exacerbated when you bend over or lie down.
Heartburn is typically experienced within 30-60 minutes of eating or drinking, and some sufferers report the symptoms to worsen during the evening hours.
(**It’s important to note, due to the location of the pain associated with heartburn, if you are experiencing serious pain or pressure in your chest that is accompanied with difficulty breathing or pain in your jaw or arm, these could be symptoms of a heart attack. If you are experiencing these symptoms, please seek medical attention immediately.)
What Triggers Heartburn?
Now that we know what heartburn is, we’re roughly halfway there.
And, as any child of the 80’s will tell you, “knowing is half the battle.” (thanks, G.I. Joe)
You see, there are certain foods that can actually trigger heartburn, therefore, avoiding the following foods and drinks can keep those uncomfortable burning feelings in your chest at bay.
And, besides dietary changes, some lifestyle changes have proven effective at reducing or eliminating heartburn as well.
Unfortunately, chocolate can trigger heartburn symptoms. I know, talk about a bummer!
Chocolate is made of cocoa, which contains serotonin, a hormone that is thought to cause the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) to relax, allowing those digestive juices to leak back into the esophagus causing pain and discomfort.
Even worse, chocolate also contains theobromine and caffeine, which are both known to stimulate the LES, causing it to relax.
2- Spicy Foods
First, if your esophagus is already inflamed due to heartburn and/or acid reflux, spicy foods will irritate this inflammation, making your symptoms of heartburn much worse.
And, spicy foods in and of themselves may cause heartburn due to a compound they contain called capsaicin.
Capsaicin is known to slow down the rate at which your body digests food, meaning foods can stay in your stomach longer, increasing the risk for those digestive juices to leak back into your esophagus.
3- Citrus Fruits
4- High Fat Foods
Foods with a high fat content are thought to relax the LES, thus allowing stomach acid or digestive fluids to creep back up into the esophagus and cause heartburn.
These foods are also known to trigger the release of a hormone known for its ability to relax the LES, doubling the effect and further causing heartburn symptoms.
Smoking cigarettes can increase the overall amount of acid made within your stomach.
Then, to make matters worse, the smoke from cigarettes works to relax the LES, causing that extra acid to leak into your esophagus, causing heartburn.
Quit smoking and avoid secondhand smoke to help decrease symptoms of heartburn.
When you eat too much food in one setting, your body produces an extra amount of enzymes and hormones to aid your organs in digestion.
In your stomach, this means an extra amount of stomach acid is produced which can increase the likelihood of this acid leaking back up into your esophagus, causing heartburn.
Overeating foods that are spicy or high in fat can worsen these symptoms.
Seek to eat small meals more frequently, as opposed to a few large meals per day, to avoid instances of heartburn.
If you are overweight, those extra pounds you are carrying around put pressure on your internal organs...here, your stomach.
As the pressure on your stomach increases, the acid within is essentially forced out, back up into your esophagus causing heartburn.
This same effect is also seen in individuals wearing tight fitting pants, where the waistband can place pressure on the stomach, causing digestive fluids to leak back into the esophagus.
In individuals who have been overweight for a long period of time, the LES can eventually lose its natural shape and strength, causing chronic symptoms of heartburn and acid reflux.
Losing weight can help relieve the excess pressure on your stomach, reducing instances of heartburn.
You finish eating dinner, then slide into your favorite chair and slouch down to relax, but are plagued with heartburn.
Is it dinner or your posture that is causing the discomfort?
Poor posture, namely slouching, especially after a meal, puts pressure on your abdomen.
This pressure can then force the contents of your stomach back into your esophagus, causing heartburn.
Especially after meals, avoid sitting or slouching to reduce heartburn. Even better, try going for a leisurely walk post-meals to decrease heartburn.
Many have believed the link between coffee and heartburn to lie in the caffeine component of our beloved java.
But, studies focusing solely on caffeine and symptoms of acid reflux, like heartburn, have found no such link.
Thus, this lends to the theory that other components of coffee may be the culprit here.
The thing is, all coffee is not created equally.
Coffees that contain chemicals like fertilizers and pesticides can irritate the lining of the stomach, thus causing an increase in acid production, leading to heartburn.
But, the other component of coffee that is thought to cause heartburn is the acidity level, with most brands of conventional coffee ranking on the pH scale at 4.85-5.10...in other words, very acidic.
Enjoy Low-Acid Coffee And Avoid Heartburn
What spells relief?
In the 1970’s, a popular company urged heartburn sufferers to spell relief by using their over-the-counter antacid.
Today, nearly 50 years later, we’re spelling relief by reaching into our coffee cabinet instead of our medicine cabinet!
Our delicious dark roast is the low-acid coffee solution you’ve been looking for, a way to continue enjoying coffee without the awful heartburn discomfort that some experience as a side effect!
What makes Lifeboost dark roast so special?
- Lifeboost coffee is grown in the rainforests of Nicaragua, naturally producing an ultra low-acid coffee!
- The pH level of our dark roast is a 6 (or higher), nearly as alkaline as water!
- Our arabica coffee beans are naturally less acidic than robusta varieties.
- Like all of our coffee at Lifeboost, our dark roast coffee beans are organically grown without the use of chemicals or pesticides that can irritate the stomach.
- We only use single origin beans, no blends, meaning we always know our beans come from one superior quality source.
- Like most dark roasted coffee, the longer roasting times incorporated to produce our dark roast prompt the extraction of the chemical we talked about earlier, known to slow the production of stomach acid and reduce the risk of heartburn.
- Our decaf dark roast is made using the Swiss Water Process, a chemical- free decaffeinating process.
With Lifeboost dark roast, you can enjoy a delicious, clean, pure, low-acid cup of coffee. It's the perfect cup for those who suffer from heartburn!
This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. Neither Dr. Charles Livingston nor the publisher of this content takes responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any nutrition, supplement or lifestyle program.