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Is Milk Good for Acid Reflux?

Most people widely believe the myth that milk is good for acid reflux. However, there are many milk varieties; some of them come in full fat, while others are skim or nonfat milk brands. 

So, is milk good for acid reflux?

Normally, it depends significantly on the nutrient content of the milk you are drinking. For instance, full-fat milk can worsen heartburn symptoms, while non-fat milk or milk alternatives can lower acid reflux symptoms. 

But, how can you determine which type of milk can help acid reflux? Let’s dig deeper into the facts to determine the effect of milk on acid reflux and GERD.  

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Table of Content

Is Milk Good for Acid Reflux?

Is Milk Good for Acid Reflux

You’re familiar with the benefits of milk, right? 

This beverage is one of the most popular in the world and 3x more likely to be purchased when compared with any other. It is also regarded as essential for a healthy diet.

However, when it comes to acid reflux, you should avoid cow’s milk (and all dairy products) altogether. So, how does milk help acid reflux?

Nowadays, milk has various nutritional profiles; some are high in minerals, while others are stripped of some milk nutrients. Similarly, some milk brands have no or lower fat content than whole milk. 

But does drinking milk help acid reflux? It depends significantly on the nutritional profile of the milk. As for cow’s milk for heartburn, it can aggravate the indigestion symptoms due to its high-fat content. 

However, plant-based milk such as soy milk, almond milk, or coconut milk helps acid reflux since it has almost similar nutrient content as animal milk. But it is lower in fatty acids.

Nutritional Profile of Whole Milk And Skimmed Milk:

Whole milk is comparatively higher in fat profile than other dairy products. Moreover, it has unique content of calcium, minerals, and vitamins. These are essential for the growth and health of kids, adults, and older people. 

However, skim milk has a relatively lower fat content that can be okay to drink for acid reflux.

Following is the nutritional comparison of whole milk and skimmed milk:

Milk Type Whole Milk (1 cup)Skimmed Milk (1 cup)
Total Fat4.8g0.2g
Calories 12283
Saturated Fat3.1g0.1g
Cholesterol 20 mg4.9 mg
Total Carbohydrates 12g12g
Sugars 12g12g
Protein 8.1g8.3g

Does Milk Help with Heartburn?

People generally ask, “does milk help heartburn?” or ‘’will milk help heartburn or make it worse?’’ Mostly, it is believed to be a good home remedy due to its soothing effect. But, milk can relieve heartburn less often. 

You may wonder, ‘does milk help indigestion?’ The calcium content in whole and plant-based milk helps to lower acid indigestion. Moreover, vitamin E can fix an upset stomach very efficiently. 

However, animal-based milk contains a pretty good amount of trans and saturated fats that are typically not good for acid reflux and GERD patients. 

Although milk can act as a buffer to neutralize stomach acid, its fatty acid content may eventually raise the acidity in the stomach. 

Therefore, we can conclude that animal milk is bad for reflux; however, low-fat milk can help acid reflux. 

Is Milk Bad for Acid Reflux?

milk and acid reflux symptoms

A type of milk that is particularly rich in fats, artificial flavor-rich milk, is bad for acid reflux

For instance, cow’s milk is high in fat, which can aggravate heartburn and GERD conditions. 
Similarly, canned milk for acid reflux can not be a good choice as it can have some chemical ingredients that trigger the acidic content or worsen the stomach condition.

Fortunately, you do not have to avoid all milk and alternatives to reduce your chances of getting acid reflux. Soy milk, goat’s milk, and coconut milk are okay for acid reflux conditions. This is because they are low in fats and have alkaline-forming properties, respectively. 

Simply switching to plant-based milk alternatives instead of skimmed and nonfat animal milk should also lower the heartburn and acid reflux symptoms

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Milk And Acid Reflux Symptoms

The consumption of milk or any of its products can trigger acid reflux symptoms or worsen them. 

Most often, people experience the following symptoms when they use milk for acid reflux or GERD: 

  • Intense heartburn
  • Wheezing
  • Vomiting
  • Stomach aches and cramps
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Sore throat
  • Bloating (when you’re allergic to milk)
  • Skin rash (when you’re allergic to milk)
  • Anaphylaxis (when you’re allergic to milk)

Which Milk Is Best for Acid Reflux?

Animal milk or full-fat milk is bad for reflux conditions. 

However, you can drink skimmed milk to lower the symptoms of heartburn. 

Following are the few types of milk that can actually help treat heartburn and acid reflux:

What Home Remedy Stops Acid Reflux?

Besides low-fat milk, several other natural remedies can do wonders to lower your reflux condition. 

Following are a few science-backed home remedies to reduce acid reflux at home

  • You can take antacids, H₂ receptor blockers, and proton pump blockers to neutralize stomach acids and stop acid reflux fasts
  • For faster relief of acid reflux, drinking baking soda in the water helps give quick relief. 
  • Also, chewing gum when you have heartburn may help, as it dilutes the stomach acids. Ultimately, it lowers the acidity of the stomach.
  • If you experience acid reflux episodes during the night, elevating your head on the bed can help acid reflux. 
  • Take anti-inflammatory and probiotic foods or drinks to ease acid reflux. 
  • Drinking aloe vera juice can help soothe the irritated stomach wall.
  • Moreover, avoid drinking alcohol, caffeinated beverages, carbonated drinks, acidic drinks, and citrus fruit juices. 
  • You should take your last meal at least 3 hours before sleep.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is whole milk bad for acid reflux?

Indeed, whole milk and its products are not good for GERD symptoms. Drinking full-fat milk can trigger or worsen the reflux condition. Therefore, it is recommended to take skimmed milk or choose its alternative with low fat for acid reflux. 

Is almond milk good for acid reflux?

Almond milk is actually good for acid reflux. It has alkalizing properties that help neutralize the stomach’s acidic content and lower the symptoms of reflux condition. However, some canned milk contains synthetic vitamin D, guar gum, and soy lecithin which can aggravate GERD symptoms. 

Is soy milk good for acid reflux?

Soy milk is a safer option than many other varieties of plant and animal-based milk because it has a relatively low content of fatty acids. However, some soy milk brands contain carrageenan, which can negatively affect GERD and stomach health. 

Is coconut milk good for acid reflux?

Coconut milk contains anti-inflammatory agents that work efficiently to lower stomach inflammation and heal the damage caused by elevated acid in the stomach. Moreover, its soothing properties give you quick relief from heartburn and associated symptoms. 

Final Verdict

For the final paragraph of “is milk good for acid reflux?” I suggest drinking low-fat milk with good nutritional value. 

Although many brands offer low to zero-fat animal milk, still, you can consider plant-based milk for better results. Plant milk is rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that work relatively better than animal milk to lower the symptoms of acid reflux, GERD, and heartburn. 

Soy milk, coconut milk, and goat’s milk can be better choices for acid reflux!

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