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15 Best Foods and Drinks For Acid Reflux (And 13 to Avoid)

Acid reflux is a type of reflux disease that occurs when stomach acid goes back into the esophagus repeatedly, where your mouth connects to your esophagus. When this happens, it can significantly irritate your esophagus lining if this happens often.

Acid reflux is a disease that can rapidly damage your esophagus lining when not careful. Foods in high-fiber, alkaline, watery foods, ginger home remedies, and smoothies can help with symptoms of acid reflux. Foods that are high in fat, grease, fast food, peppers, tomato juice, citrus fruit, and cheese can be harmful to the esophagus.

Here are the foods that should be included and avoided in your diet to help with symptoms of acid reflux.

Acid Reflux Symptoms

  • a burning sensation in your chest that commonly happens during or after eating something.
  • backwash of food or sour liquids.
  • upper abdomen or chest pain.
  • trouble with swallowing.
  • lump in your throat.

Check with a trusted health professional to determine the best next steps to take if you ever experience any of these symptoms. They can help you come up with a diet plan that will provide you with the best results. These are the foods and drinks that will help and hurt acid reflux symptoms.

Good Foods for Acid Reflux

Acid reflux can be helped with these kinds of foods.

1. High Fiber Foods

Foods that are high in fiber will help you to feel full without having to worry about the risk of heartburn. Some foods that are high in fiber include.

  • oatmeal
  • sweet potatoes, carrots, and beets
  • asparagus, broccoli, and green beans

2. Alkaline Foods

Alkaline foods are a group of loosely related types of food that are unsweetened, non-starchy, and have other benefits relating to acid reflux.

3. Watery Foods

Watery foods are any type of food that have lots of water. This is common in most fruits and vegetables.

  • celery
  • cucumber
  • lettuce
  • watermelon
  • strawberries
  • oranges
  • cantaloupe

Home Remedies to Help Heartburn

Heartburn can be relieved in many different ways including taking certain medications or prescriptions, or anything over the counter that could reduce these symptoms. These are foods you can consume and are known to help with acid reflux symptoms.

4. Milk

Non-fat milk especially can help relieve the symptoms of acid reflux. When you consume milk in your diet, the milk can act as a temporary buffer to the stomach lining and other acid stomach contents. Try adding a non-fat yogurt to your diet. This change can really help with these symptoms.

5. Ginger

Ginger is known to be one of the most beneficial aids for proper digestion. The phenolic compounds in ginger are ingredients that can help with the irritation in the stomach that acid reflux causes. Try drinking a tea with ginger inside for the best results and health.

6. Apple Cider Vinegar

Many people consider apple cider vinegar to be helpful in providing relief from acid reflux symptoms. Even though this drink can be helpful, make sure to not drink the apple cider vinegar at a high concentration. When it is at a high concentration, it can make symptoms worse if you are not careful.

There is also not a lot of research that backs up if apple cider vinegar really is helpful to everyone. Many people use it because it helps them, so try this out for yourself.

7. Lemon Water

Lemon water can be a great option to help relieve these symptoms. Lemon juice has a high amount of acidity, and this can make symptoms of acid reflux worse if there is too much lemon in the water. However, a hint of lemon in warm water with honey can neutralize the damaging effects of heartburn.

Drinks for Acid Reflux

There are certain types of drinks that can help to improve acid reflux.

8. Herbal Tea

Herbal tea is a way to improve digestion and other stomach problems which include stomach issues, gas, and nausea.

With herbal remedies, try these types of herbal teas to combat acid reflux.

  • chamomile
  • licorice
  • elm
  • ginger
  • marshmallow root

Ginger tea has an anti-inflammatory effect, which works to help reduce the symptoms of nausea and inflammation occurring in the body. Ginger can help reduce blood pressure, aid in weight loss, and help with headaches and migraines.

Licorice is able to help decrease the mucus coating around the esophagus lining. This increase of mucus can reduce the backflow of stomach acid that happens due to the negative symptoms of acid reflux.

9. Plant-Based Milk

Plant-based milk is different than regular milk because people who have a lactose intolerance or have acid reflux symptoms can have increased acid reflux symptoms because of the fat contents in the milk.

Plant-based milk on the other has a lower fat content than regular cow’s milk, resulting in plant-based milk being a safer choice for those who have GERD.

These are the various types of plant-based milk available.

  • soy milk
  • flax milk
  • cashew milk
  • coconut milk
  • oat milk
  • almond milk

10. Fruit Juice

Citrus-flavored drinks can be problematic for those who have acid reflux symptoms. These are types of juices that are not as concentrated in acidity for those who have GERD symptoms.

  • carrot juice
  • aloe vera juice
  • cabbage juice
  • beets, watermelon, spinach, cucumber, or pears

With these, try to avoid tomato juice at all costs, since this can make the acid reflux symptoms worse.

11. Smoothies

Smoothies are a nice and easy way to have a healthy diet without having to eat many solid foods. Many types of solid foods can irritate the lining of the esophagus, depending on the type.

If you do choose to make a smoothie, choose fruits and vegetables that have low acidity fruits and vegetables listed above that have low acidity, and more water inside.

It is also a good idea to incorporate some vegetables such as kale or spinach for added health benefits, and reduced acid reflux symptoms.

Ultimately, find what works for you and your diet. Everyone will react differently to types of foods. In general, smoothies are known to be a good way to get your fruits and vegetables in without experiencing painful symptoms.

Best Alcohol for Acid Reflux

Most types of alcohol will trigger symptoms of acid reflux. Even though this is the case, there are a few kinds of alcohol that would work against GERD.

12. Non-Grain Vodka

Non-grain vodka is made from French grapes. The Glen’s Distillery is a company that sells alcohol made from beets. This would work in contrast to most kinds of alcohol that contain wheat, barley, and rye.

13. Tequila and Mezcal

Tequila has a ton of flavors without sugar. Tequila also has a low acidity which is great for those with acid reflux to try. Mezcal is a drink with more of a smoky taste. It mainly uses agave, which is safe for acid reflux.

14. Gin

Gin is an alcoholic drink that contains no sugar and still has a lot of flavors. The predominant flavor in this drink is berries. Gin naturally has less acidity than other alcoholic drinks making this a chance for people who have acid reflux to be able to try.

15. Whiskey

Whiskey should be drunk with caution since it contains bourbon. Some people say it doesn’t bother them and is a safe choice because it doesn’t have any sugars or carbohydrates, but some people choose to avoid it. Watery whiskey can sometimes work, depending on the severity of your acid reflux and personal preference.

What to Avoid

With acid reflux, there are plenty of types of foods and drinks that should be avoided to reduce negative symptoms. Foods and drinks have to be avoided in order to improve your symptoms or find out if you have acid reflux.

Foods that Can Cause Heartburn

Some types of foods are known to upset your esophagus and stomach according to the most common triggers for GERD. When these foods are eaten, the food will disrupt the digestive process, making it take longer to properly digest foods that are high in fat and salt which include…

1. fried foods

Fried foods are usually greasy in nature. This type of greasy food makes it harder for the lining of the esophagus to be clean from being coated with grease. This added grease coating can make symptoms worse, especially if fried foods are being eaten all the time.

2. fast food

High-fat foods cause a higher amount of relaxation with the muscles in the esophagus, making it harder to close the space between the esophagus. This leaves more room and opportunities for the acid in the esophagus to come up.

3. chili powder

Chili powder contains an acid called capsaicin, which slows the rate of digestion. If the digestion process is slowed down, there is more room for buildup, leading to worse symptoms of acid reflux.

4. peppers

Sometimes certain peppers can increase the severity of acid reflux symptoms. If spicy food is becoming a trigger for you, try eliminating peppers from your diet.

5. potato chips

Even though potato chips can be lower in acid, they are high in fat. Fats are bad news for esophagus problems because fatty foods often make the symptoms of acid reflux worse.

6. processed snacks

Any type of snack that comes in the form of a box or any chips with seasonings, including potato chips can be harmful when experiencing acid reflux symptoms.

7. cheese

Cheese contains a bunch of milk and fat. These are the two properties that make acid reflux symptoms worse.

8. tomato sauces

Any kind of tomato sauce should be avoided. The type of acid that is in tomato juice can burn your throat and irritate your already irritated esophagus.

8. citrus fruit

Citrusy fruits such as grapefruit, lemon, mandarin oranges, limes etc. are bad fruits to choose with GERD. Try eating fruits that have more water and less tang to the taste.

9. chocolate

Chocolate contains caffeine, cocoa, and other plant chemicals. All of these ingredients can trigger symptoms of heartburn.

10. peppermint

Peppermint has a very strong mint taste that tends to burn your throat. This can irritate your esophagus, and cause more problems.

11. carbonated drinks

Carbonated drinks such as sodas have carbonation in them which irritates the lining of your esophagus and stomach. Acid reflux already damages the esophagus making carbonated drinks worsen the symptoms.

In order to prevent these foods from completely taking over your body, make sure to slowly eliminate these types of foods from your diet until you are able to do it permanently as part of your lifestyle.

It is also important to try and stay away from foods like these closer to around nighttime due to the fact that these foods will not be in your system and be able to come up through the night.

Worst Alcohol for Acid Reflux

12. Red Wine

Red wine increases the amount of acid that is located in the esophagus. Don’t drink any form of alcohol at night either, as this can also worsen acid reflux symptoms.

13. Vodka

Vodka has a PH of 4, which is more on the acidic side of alcohol. Alcohol works sort of like caffeine. It acts like a diuretic and can increase stomach and esophagus problems and more. Keep this in mind.

Alcohol in general can make symptoms of acid reflux worse. If you have been diagnosed with GERD, limiting or having no alcohol at all would be preferred. However, if your symptoms are not severe, then you can try the kinds of alcohol that have milder acidity and safe ingredients for acid reflux.


In conclusion, there are foods that are both good and bad for symptoms of acid reflux. The main reasons the foods disrupt the esophagus stem from foods high in fat, acidity, carbonation, and more. The foods that are good for acid reflux don’t have as many of those properties. They are more watered down, and calmer on the stomach and esophagus lining.

For more, check out 6 Least Acidic Alcoholic Drinks (And 6 to Avoid).