Old age doesn’t come alone as the saying goes! And although there are benefits to getting older, many of us notice an increase in some common digestive health disorders as we age. Acid reflux symptoms such as heartburn or indigestion can affect us more frequently than when we were younger.

There are many reasons for this. One can be put down to general wear and tear. If you suffer from acid reflux disease on a regular basis, it may be due to the weakening of the lower oesophageal sphincter muscle.

This muscle acts like a valve and its purpose is to prevent stomach acid rising back up into the gullet and mouth. If your acid reflux symptoms are persistent, you need to see your doctor and may need surgery to repair this problem.

It is important to take medical advice for acid reflux disease. Left untreated long term, acid reflux can cause severe medical complications such as oesophageal ulcers and even oesophageal cancer.

However, in most cases there are lifestyle changes that can improve and even stop acid reflux completely. Sometimes making small changes will avoid the need for any acid reflux treatment so it is important to try these first before you need to take medication or follow a surgery option.

Food is a major culprit and most people find there are foods to avoid for acid reflux. These include fried and fatty food or anything too rich and creamy. These foodstuffs are notorious for causing acid reflux symptoms as we age, and switching to a healthier diet may help minimise your symptoms and help you lose weight as well.

With the advancing years many people find obesity an increasing problem, and keeping fit, watching your weight and taking some regular exercise will also help reduce the causes of acid reflux.

It is not just processed foods that cause a problem. Natural healthy foods such as lemons, onions, cucumber and tomatoes can also increase acid reflux symptoms. The same foods do not affect everyone, so it is important to note the foods that appear to be the causes of acid reflux in your particular case and simply avoid them!

You may find that eating your main meal at lunchtime will help stop acid reflux. Eating too much too late in the evening and going to bed after a late night curry may be fine when we are young but as we age causes acid reflux symptoms and should be avoided.

Switching to a healthier diet and making some lifestyle changes is better than simply ignoring it and reaching for Gaviscon after each meal. Adapting your diet to improve your health naturally is good for long term general health. Make some changes now and you may find that you can stop acid reflux before it becomes problem in your later years.