Although oats are an excellent source of many different B vitamins, which according to The University of Maryland Medical Center may help control acid reflux and prevent heartburn, some people still complain of experiencing heartburn after eating them.
If you can relate, don’t count out the heart-healthy food just yet. The oats heartburn connection may be a result of the others things you’re consuming with the grain. It may even have to do with the type of oatmeal you’re using or how you’re preparing it.
Follow the tips below to help.
The Do’s and Don’ts of Oats for Heartburn
Choose gluten-free oatmeal if you’re allergic or otherwise sensitive to gluten.
Use unsweetened oats and cook using water, almond, or soy milk instead of the dairy. Dairy milk may be causing your stomach issues. Additionally, consuming too much refined sugar can also exacerbate your heartburn problems.
Add enough liquid to keep the oatmeal from being too thick. Foods that are more difficult to swallow may irritate the muscles in your esophagus, inciting heartburn.
Include trigger foods such as orange juice, coffee or tea with your breakfast. According to the Mayo Clinic these foods can cause heartburn in some people by irritating the lower esophagus and triggering acid reflux.
Eat too much or too quickly. Anyone who has ever dealt with indigestion after a large meal can attest to the destructive effects of consuming too much food. Eat slowly to give your body time to fill up and to avoid swallowing air, which can lead to uncomfortable gas and bloating.
Don’t add butter to your oatmeal. Some people enjoy their oatmeal with a little bit of butter, but high-fat foods are another potential cause for heartburn, since they relax esophageal muscles.
Remember, the reasons and severity of heartburn vary widely from one person to the next, but before you swear off oats, which come with many health benefits, make sure you’ve eliminated any other possible triggers from your diet and lifestyle.