Skip to content
    Font Size

    28 Tips for Nighttime Heartburn Relief

    Stop suffering heartburn symptoms at night. Get relief with these food, drink, and lifestyle tips.
    WebMD Feature
    Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

    A bitter taste in the mouth, a chronic cough, sore throat, fatigue ... if you're waking every morning with these symptoms of nighttime heartburn, you want relief.

    Millions experience heartburn and the more serious condition gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) daily. And research shows that nighttime heartburn affects nearly four out of five of heartburn sufferers -- disturbing sleep and impairing their ability to function the next day.

    Recommended Related to Heartburn/GERD

    Diagnosing Acid Reflux Disease

    Three out of every 10 people experience heartburn on occasion, so it can be somewhat arbitrary to decide when heartburn should be called acid reflux disease. Also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), acid reflux disease is a chronic irritation of the lining of a person's esophagus by stomach acid. Usually, it's just annoying. GERD can, however, have serious consequences, including esophagitis and Barrett's esophagus. Barrett's esophagus is a condition that increases the likelihood of...

    Read the Diagnosing Acid Reflux Disease article > >

    If you're one of these people, find nighttime heartburn relief with these simple lifestyle, exercise, and food tips.

    12 Food and Drink Tips for Nighttime Heartburn Relief

    1. Prevent heartburn by limiting acidic foods, such as grapefruit, oranges, tomatoes, or vinegar.
    2. Spicy foods giving you heartburn? Cut back on pepper or chilies.
    3. Don't lie down for two to three hours after you eat. When you are sitting up, gravity helps drain food and stomach acid into your stomach.
    4. Enjoy lean meats and nonfatty foods. Greasy foods (like French fries and cheeseburgers) can trigger heartburn.
    5. Want to avoid GERD symptom triggers? You may want to cut back on chocolate, mint, citrus, tomatoes, pepper, vinegar, catsup, and mustard.
    6. Avoid drinks that can trigger reflux, such as alcohol, drinks with caffeine, and carbonated drinks.
    7. Size matters: Eat smaller meals and you may avoid triggering GERD symptoms.
    8. Enjoy an after-work drink? You may want to turn to teetotaling: Alcohol can relax the esophageal sphincter, worsening GERD.
    9. Crazy about colas? It may be time to cut back. Colas can be related to reflux and to GERD symptoms.
    10. Keep heartburn at bay: Don't eat too quickly! Try putting your fork down between bites.
    11. Avoid snacking at bedtime. Eating close to bedtime can trigger heartburn symptoms.
    12. Reduce your nighttime heartburn risk: Eat meals two to three hours before sleep.