Foods to eat with acid reflux may include vegetables, lean meats, and healthy fats. You may find your symptoms improve if you avoid fatty and spicy foods, chocolate, and caffeine.

Acid reflux and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) involve acid backflow from your stomach into your esophagus. This can cause heartburn and other symptoms.

One reason why GERD and acid reflux happen is a weakening in or damage to the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) — the valve between your stomach and esophagus.

Typically, the LES closes to prevent food in your stomach from moving into your esophagus. In GERD, it doesn’t close properly, so acid can flow back into the esophagus.

The foods you eat may affect the amount of acid your stomach produces and the action of the LES. Here, you can get some tips on foods that may help and foods to avoid.

If you experience heartburn, incorporating these foods into your diet may:

  • reduce the risk of acid reflux, compared with other foods
  • help neutralize stomach acid
  • help you manage the symptoms of acid reflux

None of these foods will cure GERD or acid reflux, and what suits one person may not suit the next. Your choices will ultimately depend on how foods affect you.


Foods that are high in fat and added sugar may increase the risk of acid reflux.

Vegetables are naturally low in fat and sugar.

Good options include:

  • green beans
  • broccoli
  • asparagus
  • cauliflower
  • leafy greens
  • potatoes
  • cucumbers

You can use spices such as turmeric or cinnamon to add flavor. Note that adding butter, spices, lemon, ketchups, and salad dressings may increase the risk of acid reflux.


Ginger has natural anti-inflammatory properties, and many people use it as a natural remedy for indigestion, nausea, and other gastrointestinal problems.

One reason for this is that ginger encourages gastric emptying. In other words, it helps food move on through the gastrointestinal tract beyond the stomach.

You can add grated or sliced ginger root to recipes or smoothies, or drink ginger tea to ease symptoms.

In some people, though, ginger can trigger heartburn. Try a little the first time until you know if it works for you.


Oatmeal is a whole grain and an excellent source of fiber. Oats also absorb stomach acid, making you less likely to experience acid reflux.

A diet high in fiber has been linked with a lower risk of acid reflux. Other high fiber options include whole grain breads and brown rice.

Non-citrus fruits

Melons, bananas, apples, and pears all provide essential nutrients, and they’re less likely to trigger reflux symptoms than acidic fruits such as oranges.

As a snack, fruits are less likely to cause acid reflux than foods with added fats and sugar, such as chocolate.

Fruits also contain fiber, which can make you feel full for longer.

Lean meats and seafood

Lean meats, such as chicken, turkey, fish, and seafood, are low in fat and less likely to cause symptoms of acid reflux than fatty meats.

Try them grilled, broiled, baked, or poached.

What are some more lean protein foods?

Egg whites

Egg whites are low in fat and high in protein. Try eating them poached.

Egg yolks and fried eggs are high in fat and may trigger reflux symptoms.

Healthy fats

The body needs fats to function, but it’s important to choose the right fats and use them in moderation.

Sources of healthy, unsaturated fats include:

These are less likely to cause acid reflux than animal fats and fats added to processed foods. Try to avoid deep-fried foods such as fries and donuts.


Try to opt for nonacidic drinks and avoid those that contain alcohol, sweeteners, and caffeine.

Options include:

  • herbal teas
  • plant-based milks
  • carrot and other nonacidic vegetable juices

Learn more here about what to drink if you have GERD or acid reflux.

There’s no definitive list of foods to avoid in people with GERD, but certain items commonly result in symptoms for many people.

They include the following:

High fat foods

Fried and fatty foods can cause the LES to relax, allowing more stomach acid to back up into the esophagus. These foods also delay stomach emptying.

High fat foods increase the risk of reflux symptoms, so managing your fat intake can help.

The following foods have a high fat content. It’s a good idea to avoid them or eat them sparingly:

  • fries and onion rings
  • full-fat dairy products, such as butter, whole milk, regular cheese, and sour cream
  • fatty or fried cuts of beef, pork, or lamb
  • bacon fat, ham fat, and lard
  • desserts or snacks, such as ice cream and potato chips
  • cream sauces, gravies, and creamy salad dressings
  • oily and greasy foods

Acidic foods

Fruits and vegetables are important in a healthy diet. But certain fruits can cause or worsen GERD symptoms, especially highly acidic fruits.

If you have frequent acid reflux, limit your intake of the following foods:

  • oranges
  • grapefruit
  • lemons
  • limes
  • pineapple
  • tomatoes
  • tomato sauce or foods that use it, such as pizza and chili
  • salsa


Chocolate contains an ingredient called methylxanthine. Some older research has suggested it can relax the smooth muscle in the LES and increase reflux. This could make chocolate unsuitable for people with GERD and acid reflux.


Coffee and other high-caffeine foods may trigger symptoms.

Garlic, onions, and spicy foods

Spicy and tangy foods, such as onions and garlic, trigger heartburn symptoms in many people.


Mint and products with mint flavoring, like chewing gum and breath mints, can trigger acid reflux symptoms.


Avoid or limit alcohol consumption, as this can increase the risk of acid reflux.


Sodas, fizzy drinks, and soft drinks may increase the risk of acid reflux, according to some research.

Other foods

While the lists above include common triggers, other foods may also affect you.

You might consider eliminating flour-based products, such as bread and crackers, and whey protein to see if symptoms improve.

As well as dietary measures, some lifestyle choices and medications can help manage acid reflux:

  • Take antacids and other medications that reduce acid production, but avoid overuse.
  • Maintain a moderate weight.
  • Chew gum that isn’t flavored with peppermint or spearmint.
  • Avoid alcohol.
  • If you smoke, try quitting.
  • Don’t overeat.
  • Eat slowly.
  • Remain upright for at least 2 hours after eating.
  • Wear loose clothes.
  • Don’t eat for at least 3 hours before going to bed.
  • Raise the head of your bed by around 8 inches to reduce reflux symptoms while sleeping.

If acid reflux is persistent or severe, consider speaking with a doctor. They may be able to prescribe medication or offer more specific dietary tips.

Heartburn is a common symptom of acid reflux and GERD. You may notice a burning sensation in your stomach or chest after eating a full meal or certain foods.

Other symptoms include:

No single diet can prevent all symptoms of GERD, and food triggers are different for everyone.

To identify your individual triggers, keep a food diary and track the following:

  • what foods you eat
  • what time of day you eat
  • what symptoms you experience

Keep the diary for at least a week or longer if your diet varies. You can use the diary to identify specific foods and drinks that affect your GERD.

A doctor or dietitian can advise you in more detail on what to eat and what to avoid, and they can help you make a plan.

Does drinking water help acid reflux?

Frequently sipping water can help clear acid reflux from your esophagus.

What foods aggravate acid reflux?

Fatty foods, added sugars, chocolate, caffeine, alcohol, spicy foods, and sodas may all make acid reflux worse.

What food helps acid reflux go away?

No food will neutralize stomach acid, but oatmeal can help absorb it so that it doesn’t return to the esophagus. Other foods, such as bananas, may be less likely to trigger stomach acid than others, for instance, tomatoes and citrus fruits. Lean meat, oatmeal, egg whites, and vegetables are good choices if you have acid reflux. Ginger is useful for some people but may worsen symptoms in others.

Are eggs good for acid reflux?

While egg yolks are high in fat and may trigger acid reflux in some people, egg whites are typically a good choice if you have acid reflux as they are low in fat and high in protein.

No diet has been proven to prevent GERD. However, certain foods may ease symptoms in some people.

Talk with a doctor if you have questions about whether certain foods should be a part of your diet. Foods that help improve acid reflux for one person may be problematic for someone else.

A doctor or a registered dietitian can help you develop a diet to manage your symptoms.

Read this article in Spanish.