Friday, July 6, 2012

Heartburn - The Natural Solution

If you're like me, heartburn has been your unwanted companion during your pregnancy. Unfortunately for me, I've had it since maybe week 14 or 15. There were some nights that I had to prop myself into a sitting position because the moment I would lie down the acid would work its way up.

If you're a hippie like me (I'm not actually one, but think like one), you avoid as many pills as you can. Yes, I don't take Tums even though it's just calcium. And I don't take Tylenol either unless my pain is 11 out of 10 bad.

I don't take Tums because I can't seem to find out whether the calcium is from a vegan. Their website states that the calcium is derived from limestone but at the same time say it's "kosher dairy" so I have no idea what to believe.

So here is a list of things that have worked for me. It's all food (some that I eat more for pleasure than for heartburn) and all vegan. Remember, everyone is different so I can't guarantee it would work but it's worth a try.

All kinds of melon but especially watermelon seems to soothe the burn. Why? I have no idea. All I know is one day I was ready to pass out from the pain and I couldn't eat anything. Some one offered me watermelon and my eyes lit up. Turns out the eyes were right because the burn was reduced. It didn't make it go away but it was a lot better than before the melon.

Coconut Water (Preferably the one by Grace because it tastes really good):
Same as the watermelon, finding out this was a burn buster was a total fluke that I was thankful for.

Alternative Milks:
Rice milk, coconut milk, soy milk.... Are all great. They are fortified with calcium which helps. Whether it's the added calcium or the milk itself, I don't know but it sure helps me.

It seems the only vegan puddings you can easily find are ones made with soy milk. Buy the ones that are refrigerated, I find they work better and taste better too.

And then, my midwife recommended papaya enzyme. You can get them from the supplement section. I never had a chance to try it but it seems to be the natural go to for heartburn.

On top the list I gave you, here are some tips to avoid heartburn or to further agitate it. 

  • Avoid physical activity for a little bit after eating.
  • Avoid bending over.
  • Don't lie down after eating, instead, prop yourself up on some pillows.
  • Avoid spicy and/or acidic food (I know it's obvious but if your like me, when the food is in front of you it becomes less obvious.)
  • Chew your food well and eat slowly.
  • Don't chew gum.
  • Drink lots of water and non acidic juices (not too much juice though).

Well, this is what I use to treat my heartburn. Hope something works for you!


  1. So these stuff works for you? Interesting. Don't chew gum? It's probably more along the lines of "don’t chew gum with an empty stomach". I actually find chewing gums after meal helpful as it stimulates your salivary glands, which can help defuse the acid.

    Yevette Behnke @ U.S. HealthWorks

    1. Hi there! These things did work for me and definitely helped me cope (I had insanely aggressive heartburn). You are right, you should be avoiding gum on an empty stomach. However, I highly encourage everyone, not just pregnant mamas to avoid it. Almost all gum contains aspartame which is a huge no no. You do not want to put that into your body at all, especially while carrying your little one. Aside from aspartame, gum is filled with yucky substances. You might as well be chewing on plastic and there's no benefit worth putting that in your mouth.