Natural Home Remedies for Heartburn, Pain & Pressure in the Chest & Stomach Area

tea herbal raw honey fresh herbs heartburn chest pain pressure

 

This topic is very near and dear to my heart. Literally. If you read my About Me page, you can get the whole story. The pain I used to experience for so many years was incredibly debilitating and frustrating, because nothing gave me relief.

I almost removed my gall bladder, I had my heart looked at numerous times assuming something was wrong. I tried it all from pain meds, heartburn meds, EVERY natural remedy under the sun, and I spent a lot of money in the process.

The first thing to address is that many times the pain and pressure you feel in the center of your chest is not necessarily heartburn. It could very likely be your gall bladder. In keeping a food journal I quickly found what triggered my worst symptoms. Citric Acid, an additive in most of the processed food we eat like juice, ketchup, condiments, anything with lemon or lime “flavoring” (real citrus does not bother me) many chips have citric acid, even frozen fruit….anything that has that tart flavor, like candies (sour patch kids). Interestingly enough, Tums have Citric Acid along with a lot of other junk ingredients. I cannot imagine that Citric Acid is not a huge trigger for others, yet I know they have no idea. Keep an eye on ingredients, particularly citric acid or lemon juice concentrate/lime flavoring (aka citric acid). Real citrus should not bother you, and is in fact a very alkaline food.

Another thing to consider is that your stomach may not be making enough acid (hydrochloric acid) which is necessary for your digestions, or sometimes the valves of the stomach are not functioning properly, or perhaps the gall bladder is not eliminating bile properly. There are many, many reasons for discomfort, and different methods to relieve each one. Most people assume it is heartburn and take antacids, which are not helping. Meeting with a gastroenterologist is a very good idea, since they can do an upper endoscopy to look down into the upper digestive system using a scope to see if there is anything serious going on.

You really want to discover the source of the symptoms of pain and pressure in your chest area which means you MUST keep a food journal. Start it right now (after you read through post I will have another link at the end of this page). Your quality of life is suffering and you are so worth it. Something you are eating or drinking could be causing this reaction, usually within the hour if not sooner. It is SO easy to do and is such a life changer. If you do nothing else, please do this.

 

NATURAL HOME REMEDIES TO RELIEVE HEARTBURN,
PAIN & PRESSURE IN THE CHEST AREA

 

First of all, if you are in pain at the moment and you have just recently had a meal, stop eating. If you are hungry and have not eaten in awhile, try eating some celery. If it feels like a “sour stomach” eat some oatmeal or healthy homemade oatmeal cookies (See #8 in the prevention list).

honey baking soda relief relieve heartburn pain pressure chest stomach angina gerd

 

1. This is the #1 way to get relief. (See photo above) Mix 1 tablespoon of honey (raw honey is the healthier for you, but not necessary) and a 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda together (mix it well) and eat it. It will not taste bad since the honey is sweet enough to cover the saltiness of the baking soda. You can do a second tablespoon if want, but give it a good 10-15 minutes as another dose is usually not needed. You should burp a few times and each time will offer more and more relief. Be aware that baking soda has a lot of sodium, so if you need to be careful of sodium intake, this may not be ideal for you. Chemically, sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) is a base that consumes and neutralizes acid. Byproducts of this reaction include water and carbon dioxide gas, which bubbles off and forces burping. If your stomach is too full of food, this could cause even more pressure. For me, it works, but my stomach is never overly full.

2. Give the honey/baking soda remedy a good 15 minutes to work. If you still need relief, make a hot cup of herbal tea such as peppermint or chamomile. You do not want an acidic tea. Pick something gentle, or just heat some plain water and sip it as hot as you can tolerate. The heat will help “move” things and will help relieve the pressure. If you feel the urge to burp, go for it. That is helping to relieve the pressure as well. Shop my favorite teas here. You can add some fresh grated ginger and honey to the hot water as well.

3. If you are wearing something that is even slightly pressing in on your chest or abdomen, this will aggravate the symptoms. I am fairly thin, and I still notice that on days when I wear clothes that are constricting, I more easily feel a degree of pain and pressure in my chest, even if the pants I am wearing are cutting into my lower abdomen area. I often have to remove my belts for this reason.

4. If pain persists, continue drinking gentle, hot liquids (add a little honey). Try to sit on the toilet for an extended period of time as that could trigger movement even if you do not feel like it is possible. You want to move things through the digestive system. As painful as it sounds, doing some jumping jacks or jogging in place for a few minutes can aid in this as well. Continue with the hot liquid.

 

HOW TO PREVENT HEARTBURN, PAIN & PRESSURE
IN THE CHEST AREA

1.  Eat slow, small bites at a time and chew your food thoroughly. Your food should be complete mush before you swallow. Give your digestive system a helping hand by breaking up the food in your mouth properly, allowing digestive enzymes to do their job.

2.  Do not eat until you are full! The second you start to feel like you are not hungry, stop eating. I love to eat and I used to love to overeat since it is fun to do on occasion when enjoying a really good meal. It is not fun anymore! It causes me pain and pressure in the chest area every time. I read once that it is customary in some Asian cultures to eat until they feel 80% full. That seems like such a smart idea for so many reasons, including preventing discomfort from food.

3. Posture is important. This may sound strange or silly, but trust me on this. Sitting up straight, or if reclining, keeping the area between hips and neck (the ENTIRE torso) elongated as opposed to being hunched over, makes a huge difference. Again, you want the digestive process to be able to flow smoothly and not be blocked or hindered by anything. Sometimes my little one wants to sit on my lap after meals, and I have to be careful not to have him place any pressure on my stomach, or it could cause discomfort.

4.  Avoid drinks within 30 minutes prior to eating. Drink plenty of fluid throughout the day, just not within 30 minutes of a meal. I noticed that drinking water or other liquids with or prior to a meal causes the pain and pressure in my chest. It happens every time. You want the stomach to have enough acid and also enough space to handle the food coming in. If you drink a large glass of water before a meal, you are diluting the acid. A sip here and there is fine, but if you have a full glass with each meal or prior to and are experiencing discomfort, stop the habit.

5.  Eating habits are hard to break, but they are usually the root of many, if not all of our ailments. If you eat a lot of highly processed food, then you are likely not feeling so great much of the time. The best thing you can do for your body is to eat as many whole foods as possible. Fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, healthy oils like coconut, flax, avocado. See my Ingredients 101 Grocery Guide to see which foods to avoid and which ones to choose. It does not mean you cannot eat a Snickers, Doritos, or have a Coke now and then. I enjoy my junk food on occasion, but I have cut it out enough to feel a reaction within my body EVERY SINGLE time I eat those things. Sometimes it is worth it, sometimes it is not. Be aware, know what you are eating, and find a balance that works for you. You deserve to feel great every day!

6.  If you are not a fan of veggies, add a smoothie or two to your daily routine. Spinach literally melts away if blended long enough. Add a banana, a cup of frozen spinach and some ice (and any other frozen fruits or veggies you like), and blend really well. Shakeology is a supplement that I take every day. It is the best meal replacement shake I have ever seen, non-gmo, has all the super foods and nutrient dense supplements I used to buy separately all in one scoop. I make one giant blender with spinach, banana, ice, and a full scoop of Shakeology and split that between my whole family of four. I do not have to buy any other vitamins or supplements….it has it all. Learn more or buy it now if interested.

7.  Aside from Citric Acid and too much wheat, dairy is something I also need to limit as it also seems to aggravate the symptoms. I still eat wheat and dairy, just not too much (causes major bloat). If I feel the symptoms appear, I immediately take my honey and baking soda, along with some tea if possible. It always helps.

8. Daily calcium intake (with vitamin D) is crucial if you suffer from loose stools. Oat bran via oatmeal or otherwise is also recommended daily. “Oat bran contains soluble fibers, such as β-glucan, that increase bile acid excretion and thus decrease serum cholesterol. Bile acid synthesis correlates with serum concentrations of the metabolite 7α-hydroxy-4-cholesten-3-one (α-HC).” “Consumption of β-glucan from oat bran nearly doubled the serum α-HC concentration within 8 hours, indicating increased bile acid synthesis. α-HC in serum could be used as a marker of increased bile acid excretion induced by the diet.” (Source). Eating oatmeal on a daily basis is highly recommended if you are dealing with any digestive issues. If bile is your issue, oatmeal is your new best friend friend.

9. Steam cooked vegetables such as collard greens, kale, mustard greens, broccoli, green bell pepper, and cabbage to name a few, significantly improve the in vitro bile acid binding compared with previously observed bile acid binding values for these vegetables raw (uncooked). These green/leafy vegetables, when consumed regularly after steam cooking, would lower the risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer, advance human nutrition research, and improve public health. (Source).

Again, if you do not know what is causing the pain and pressure in the first place, you are fighting an uphill battle. Do the food journal, and in the meantime, this will help to prevent and relieve your heartburn-like symptoms.

I still accidentally eat something that causes me pain and pressure, heartburn-like symptoms in the center of my chest area and I feel the painful side-effects immediately. The raw honey and baking soda work like magic every time, and the tea I feel also helps a lot. It takes about five to ten minutes to feel relief.

I would love to hear if you are also dealing with this issue, and if any of these work for you! Please let me know in the comments!

 

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