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The key approaches to managing GERD involve the same lifestyle modifications that are usually recommended by physicians at the time of diagnosis:

  • Eat three hours or more before bedtime.
  • Elevate the head of the bed 5 to 8 inches above the foot, perhaps using bricks or concrete blocks.
  • Lose weight if you are overweight.
  • Avoid certain foods, including caffeine, carbonated drinks, chocolate, mints, high-fat and fried foods, tomato sauces.
  • Avoid large meals; eat small amounts more frequently.
  • Stop smoking.
  • Limit alcohol intake.

Lifestyle changes plus appropriate medical treatment should make it possible for most people to keep their symptoms in check.

Last reviewed on 7/23/09

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