Does Oatmeal Cause Heartburn?


Oatmeal Cause HeartburnOatmeal gives me heartburn. That may seem hard to imagine, but it’s true. You see, it isn’t simply unhealthy foods that can give you heartburn.

Many people think if you simply eliminate spicy, greasy foods you will not get heartburn.

It’s not just the obvious choices like nachos, chile & beans, french fries or spicy tacos that cause acid reflux. For some folks even healthy foods, like oatmeal, may be a problem.

Anyone who has gone through a bout of heartburn knows how very painful and annoying it can be. In fact, it can be down right scary.

Oatmeal cause heartburn severe health problems down the road. Sadly, however, prescriptions for heartburn medications are being handed out by doctors in record numbers. And that number is increasing daily.

What causes heartburn in the first place?

When you swallow, your food should follow the natural path down your esophagus to your stomach. There is a valve along the way that opens and closes allowing food to pass into your stomach — and it should close as soon as food has passed through it.

When it doesn’t work properly, however, stomach acid is allowed to to enter back up into your esophagus. This is called acid reflux, or heartburn. It can be very sudden and very painful.

Often indigestion accompanies heartburn. While it goes by many terms, indigestion is basically an uncomfortable feeling of fullness either during or after a meal.

Many people with indigestion complain of a burning feeling in their upper stomach. Other symptoms include feeling bloated, an acidic taste in the mouth, stomach growling, burping, gas, nausea, and even vomiting. Generally these symptoms are exacerbated when an individual is under stress.

People often have heartburn with indigestion. The indigestion causes additional or excessive acid in the stomach — and heartburn occurs when that acid flows back up into the esophagus. No wonder heartburn creates a horrible burning sensation. What you are feeling is acid!

Interestingly, heartburn attacks most often occur at night when you’re asleep. Why? Because your stomach is pretty much at the same level as your throat. This makes it much easier for stomach acid to flow from the one to the other.

It really becomes interesting when you examine the variety of foods that cause some people heartburn. Many of the foods on that list are both healthy and natural! Just like oatmeal causes me heartburn, however, many healthy foods are to blame for heartburn in others.

For instance, If your heartburn is closely associated with bouts of gas and indigestion, you might want to cut down on the amount of broccoli in your diet. Broccoli? Yes! This healthy green vegetable adds gas to your digestive system — which may become a heartburn trigger.

Another unlikely culprit is citrus fruits such as oranges, grapefruits and lemons. The acid contained in citrus fruit has been the cause of heartburn in many individuals.

The same is true for tomatoes, including tomato based foods. Tomatoes are high in acid. They have also been known to cause the lower esophageal sphincter muscles to relax. Sadly, chocolate does the same thing! So if you don’t know what is causing your heartburn, start eliminating tomato based foods like ketchup and marinara sauce — and put the chocolate away!

And then we get back to oatmeal, which gives me severe heartburn! What is there in oatmeal that causes this problem? No one knows. In fact some people find oatmeal to be a good remedy for their bouts of heartburn.

After all, when you pick up a box of oatmeal (not the sugared, flavored varieties), the contents read simply: ‘rolled oats.’ And, as we all know, oatmeal is brimming with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. It is a healthy source of plant protein, iron and healthy carbohydrates.

heart brunOatmeal is even considered a great food in fighting heart disease and cancer! Like broccoli and citrus fruit, however, some people simply must avoid it.

There are other factors that contribute to heartburn. For instance consuming a large meal close to bedtime may add pressure on your esophageal sphincter muscles.

This, in turn, will increase the chance of stomach acid backing up into your esophagus. Most health experts agree it is a good idea to put down your fork before you feel full since it takes several minutes for your brain to receive the message your tummy is full.

It is also a good idea to eat earlier in the evening, several hours before going to bed.

Did you know that vigorous exercise can contribute to heartburn?

Unfortunately, this is true. There have been many studies that indicate strenuous exercise can stir up stomach acids, causing them to spill over into the esophagus.’

In fact there is a study that found people with heartburn who exercised too rigorously had three times the amount of stomach acid entering their esophagus when compared to people at rest.

Does this mean you shouldn’t work out?

No. But it does mean that you should not overdo it. Exercise should relax you — it should not be a stressful high-stakes competition!

Heartburn is a complex problem. There are natural cures for heartburn that really work. In the meantime, it is important to cut down on stress, exercise moderately, and eliminate the wrong foods in your diet — perhaps even oatmeal!


5 Comments/Reviews

  • Kevin says:

    For anyone having issues with heartburn at night try laying on your left side. I’ve had it since I was a child almost every day of my life. The doctors want to take a look in my throat to see if they need to do surgery. I know what the results of that will be so I’ve been avoiding it after hearing constant comments of puerile who’ve had it done and it only slightly helped. . Esophageal cancer can occur due to scar tissue that builds up and the body rec recognizes that as foreign tissue.

    • Nancy says:

      Kevin, I don’t want to scare you but… that acid is causing scar tissue. My brother died of esophageal cancer when he was just 44. HIs only health complaint for years was heartburn.

  • Lea says:
    1 stars

    Can’t believe there was no mention of fibre in this article- you know, the main reason a person eating oatmeal might be having indigestion. But then again, you call ketchup “catchup” so, really, how credible can you be? 😉

  • Mike White says:

    The naturally occurring oil in oatmeal is high in the Omega 6 fatty acid Linoleic Acid. Consuming Linoleic Acid seems to be the cause of many heartburn issues. Those susceptible to heartburn should avoid foods containing high amounts of Linoleic Acid. Besides oatmeal Linoleic Acid is mostly found in the following cooking oils: peanut oil, canola oil, soybean oil, corn oil, walnut oil, and cottonseed oil (Crisco). Switching to coconut oil, olive oil, or macadamia nut oil will help significantly improve heartburn because these oils are lower in Linoleic Acid. Switching to these oils is also helpful for balancing your Omega 6 to Omega 3 fat ratio which has been shown to improve heart health.

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