Acid reflux refers to a condition in which the acids from the stomach back up into the esophagus and cause an inflammation. The most common symptom of acid reflux is heartburn and this afflicts one out of 10 adults in the U.S. Though the most common treatment of acid reflux is drugs, they only suppress the acids and hence are not the best remedy or a long-term solution. Natural remedies such as honey are recognized to be among the best cures for relieving acid reflux.
The Efficacy of Honey
Honey has been used as a natural remedy for a number of ailments in many cultures. For instance, in India lotus honey is used to treat eye conditions, and in Sardinia the honey from strawberry tree is considered very beneficial for overall health. Honey has antimicrobial properties. It attacks bacteria both by osmotic force and by its acidity. It also has glucose oxidase, which is an enzyme that produces hydrogen peroxide when it catalyzes and kills bacteria.
The honey obtained from different sources is used for specific medical conditions. Thyme honey is considered a general antiseptic, which is also beneficial for digestion. In Central America and the Caribbean, honey is mixed with tea and taken for the relief of upper respiratory problems. Raw organic honey is considered very effective for symptoms related to heartburn since it soothes and protects the esophagus.
To treat acid reflux, the recommended method of use to eat 1 tsp. of raw organic honey before each meal. The honey can also be taken with a small piece of fruit or bread. No liquids should be taken for at least 20 minutes afterward as this can dilute the honey and reduce its efficacy. The thickness of the honey coats the esophagus and the opening of the stomach and keeps more acid from coming up.
The common cause of acid reflux is damage to or weakening of the tissue called the lower esophageal sphincter. This is the muscle flap on top of the stomach which is primarily responsible for containing acids and foods in the stomach. When this flap is weakened the acids start to escape and cause acid reflux. The use of honey stimulates the tissue on the sphincter and helps it to regrow and hence reduces the chances of acid reflux.