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4 Ways to Avoid Exercise-Induced Heartburn

Go ahead and work out—but try these tips to block the burn.

Sponsored By: PRILOSEC OTC ®

4 Ways to Avoid Exercise-Induced Heartburn

What’s the exercise-heartburn connection? Researchers believe that certain fitness activities increase abdominal pressure, which can push stomach contents into the esophagus, thus contributing to heartburn symptoms.

For example, a weight lifter might get heartburn from tensing ab muscles, whereas a cyclist’s heartburn might be caused by hunching over the handlebars.

Five Tips for Blocking the Burn

More research is necessary to establish the link between heartburn and exercise. But until it’s better understood, make these easy modifications to your fitness program.

1. Avoid exercises that require you to be upright and bounce against gravity, such as jogging, aerobics or jumping rope. Bouncing jostles the contents of your stomach and can cause acid to rise back up into the esophagus.

2. Keep your abs as relaxed as possible. Tensed or clenched stomach muscles during weight-bearing exercises can increase abdominal pressure and increase reflux of acid into the esophagus.

3. After eating, wait one to two hours before exercising. Don’t eat directly after a fitness activity. And never eat while working out.

4. Dilute your sports drinks, if you consume them. Most sports drinks contain 60 grams to 100 grams of carbohydrates per liter. Try diluting them in quarter intervals to see if a three-quarter- or one-half-strength solution decreases your heartburn. Watered-down solutions will also leave the stomach faster, resulting in more rapid hydration benefits.

The material in this site is intended to be of general informational use and is not intended to constitute medical advice, probable diagnosis or recommended treatments. OTC PPIs are only indicated for treatment of frequent heartburn. For severe heartburn or heartburn that persists after trying over-the-counter treatment or lifestyle modifications, visit your doctor to determine the right treatment for you. See the Terms and Conditions for more information.