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Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Burn Fat, Not Your Throat

If your throat is feeling “hot, hot, hot” lately from chronic acid reflux, tell the triple-layer double fudge cake to sit this one out.

While there’s been evidence for years that obesity can cause acid reflux, a new study by the New England Journal of Medicine found that even minor weight gain can increase your chance of acid reflux, or GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease).

The study found that a 5-foot 2-inch woman weighing in at the heavier end of the normal weight range for her height had a 38 percent greater chance of acid reflux than a woman weighing in at the lighter end of the normal weight range.

But there is some good news. The risk of acid reflux is significantly reduced with weight loss—even as much as 40 percent in one instance, the study found.

The lesson: Eat a balanced, probiotic diet that will burn fat—and not your throat.

If you have diabetes and acid reflux, it can be especially hard to find the right kind of foods to eat. My recommendations: Eat smaller, more frequent meals; avoid too much fried food, caffeine, and alcohol; and don’t smoke!

If you experience acid reflux occasionally, such as after a large or spicy meal, no need to worry. But if your acid reflux occurs regularly, it may be a sign of the more serious GERD, and you should see a doctor.

Above all, find a more intimate relationship with nature, keep your weight down, and your body will thank you from the bottom of your … er … derriere.

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