I am craving acidic food. Yes, it’s true! I know that there are a lot of people who do not suffer from this affliction and some who would never admit to it.
But I have been making up for the lack of tartness in my life with all sorts of sour or citrusy things. But what is really behind the craving for acidity? Is it just an acquired taste? What causes the need for something so tangy and sharp?
This blog post will explore those questions and more as we look at what can cause cravings for certain types of food – especially when they seem out-of-place or unreasonable given your dietary restrictions.
What are food cravings?
Craving food is a natural feeling when your body needs nutrients. The problem comes into play when we start eating foods that are not good for us, like fast food, which can cause diabetes and heart disease. Craving acidic food might be caused by one of the following:
- Eating too much sugar or other high-calorie sweeteners
- An underlying health condition like GERD or acid reflux
- Psychological reasons such as a need to “get rid of something.”
Craving acidic food
Craving acidic food can be both caused by and cause acid reflux. This is because when you eat certain foods, they can weaken or break down the lower esophageal sphincter (LES), which is a muscle at the bottom of your throat.
Why do I crave acidic foods?
If there’s something wrong or uncomfortable going on inside of us (such as GERD), then we might try to “get rid of it” by eating something that, for some reason, really makes us feel better.
What kind of foods are acidic foods?
Acidic foods have higher acid content, which can cause a burning sensation in the throat and an unpleasant taste.
Examples of acidic food are:
- Citrus fruits or juices,
- Tomato sauce,
- Vinegar (except for apple cider),
- Salad (dressings with lots of lemon juice).
The list goes on to include sodas such as colas, energy drinks, and sports drinks.
What are the symptoms of craving acidic food?
Symptoms can range from feeling a sour taste in your mouth to stomach pain and heartburn. If you’re constantly experiencing these issues, it’s best to consult with a doctor or registered dietician for more information about what kind of food you may be sensitive to.
How to stop craving acidic foods?
There are a few different ways you can prevent yourself from craving food that may be causing acid reflux and, at the same time, help your condition as well.
Don’t lie down after eating: When we eat, the stomach’s acid can flow back into our throat. When we lie down, gravity pulls stomach contents up, and that makes things worse.
Change your diet: Eat more alkaline foods such as green leafy vegetables or coconut water to help balance the acidic food you may be craving due to GERD.
Avoid lying down for two hours after a heavy meal: If you’re having trouble avoiding lying down for long periods of time, try to eat something light or take an over-the-counter medication like Simethicone which helps break up food and saliva in your throat.
Take care of yourself: Self-care is one of the most important things we can do when feeling this way.
Avoid the triggers: When you eat or drink something that will trigger heartburn, take your medication before eating and try not to overeat.
Causes of food cravings
The most common triggers for food cravings are:
Stress: A stressful event can trigger your body to release stress hormones like cortisol and epinephrine, which in turn affect your appetite as well as the way you process food. Your body may crave foods that offer quick energy, such as sugars or refined carbs.
Genetics: Some people may be predisposed to food cravings because of their genes. Studies have shown that a person’s genetic makeup may affect the way they respond to sugar and fat.
Environmental cues: Certain smells, sights, or other sensory stimuli can trigger your body’s craving for certain foods.
Lifestyle choices: The way you live day to day might also affect your food cravings. Drinking alcohol, not getting enough sleep, and other lifestyle choices can lead to more frequent or intense food cravings.
Hormonal fluctuations: Women, in particular, may have hormone fluctuations that affect their appetite for certain foods at different points during the month; which could cause them to crave things like salty snacks when they’re menstruating or crave high-carb snacks when they’re ovulating.
What are the types of food cravings?
Craving acidic food can be related to one if not more than one type because there are so many factors that contribute. This taste can be related to acid reflux or GERD.
- Craving acidic food is often a sign of indigestion
- Craving for an acidic taste can also show other underlying health conditions such as ulcers, stomach cancer, and more; so it’s best to see your doctor if you’re unsure what the reason may be.
- Craving acidic food can be psychological. For instance, a craving for an acidic taste may signify someone who wants to “get rid of something.”
What do you do about those cravings?
Craving acid foods means more than just wanting to eat something sour. It can also mean that your body needs a break from the sugars and fats it’s been consuming for days or even weeks on end. If you don’t provide your body with something acidic, the cravings will only worsen. So why not try drinking a small glass of lemon water first thing in the morning. Or sip on some lime-flavored sparkling water throughout the day?
A few ounces of fresh orange juice can also be an option for less severe cases. It’s important to keep in mind that citrus fruits are already acidic on their own. Too much can give you stomachaches and make your cravings worse.
If you’re not too sure what to do about this type of craving, go with a balanced diet rich in healthy fats like avocado or olive oil, as well as plenty of fruits and vegetables.
Lastly, make sure to drink lots of water! Dehydration can cause your body to crave saltier foods as it tries to retain the fluids lost through sweat or urination.
Water helps with digestion and will help you feel fuller more quickly to go away those cravings for greasy food.
How do I get over the cravings?
There are ways you can help curb your cravings by decreasing or eliminating certain foods that trigger acid reflux and GERD symptoms, such as:
- Citrus fruits
- Tomato sauce, pizza, and other tomato products
- Pickled foods
- Apple cider vinegar
- Carbonated drinks like soda and beer avoid or decrease the intake of these beverages to reduce acidity in your stomach. And will help curb cravings for acidic food. Alternatively, you can substitute these beverages with water, fruit juice, or other non-carbonated drinks.
How do you know if acid reflux is a problem?
Acid reflux, also called GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), happens when the food and stomach acids in your esophagus flow up into your throat or mouth.
Symptoms of acid reflux can include:
A feeling of fullness or pressure in your chest that worsens when you lie down.
Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia) -Nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain -Heartburn—feeling like there’s a fire burning from the bottom of your breastbone to the top of your abdomen.
It’s normal for stomach acid to flow up into the esophagus. And back down again when you eat or drink—that’s how digestion works! But if it does this too often, you could have GERD.
Acid reflux is usually caused by something called “non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs” (NSAIDs), which are used to relieve pain.
The most common symptom of acid reflux is heartburn, but that’s not the only thing you’ll feel if you have it—it can manifest in other ways as well:
- You may experience a feeling like someone has just shoved their fist into your stomach area or that you have been stabbed with a sharp object.
- It’s also possible for acid to come up from the stomach and into your mouth, nose, or throat when it shouldn’t be there—this is called “acid rebound.”
- You may not always feel these symptoms of GERD. But if they do happen more than once in a while, it’s worth talking to your doctor about.
- You don’t necessarily have a symptom during the day. But when you go to bed and sleep on your stomach or eat certain foods (especially those with acid-like citrus fruits), GERD may be at play.
- Acid reflux can also cause nighttime heartburn.
Once you know what is triggering your GERD, it’s important to start treating the symptoms. There are many over-the-counter medications and lifestyle changes that can help with this:
Simethicone (Overscan) may ease acid reflux pain. Because its bubbles work by trapping air in the stomach and easing gas and bloating.
Pepto-Bismol is another medication that can soothe acid reflux symptoms and nausea or diarrhea from other stomach illnesses (non-GERD related).
Antacids such as Tums work by absorbing excess acids in the stomach to relieve heartburn pain.
How can I treat acid reflux?
There are two major ways to treat GERD and acid reflux: lifestyle changes and medication. There is no cure for GERD. But there’s plenty you can do to prevent it from happening in the first place.
Lifestyle changes: Avoid or decrease the intake of certain foods that may cause your acid reflux to flare up, such as acidic food and beverages. The common culprits are citrus fruits, tomato sauce, pizza, and other tomato products, pickled foods, and apple cider vinegar. If you must eat these types of food items, eat them in moderation. And make sure to drink plenty of water afterward.
Medication: If lifestyle changes aren’t enough, your doctor may prescribe over-the-counter medication or stronger prescription medications if necessary.
In my opinion, acidic food is not healthy for anyone because it will cause acid reflux in the first place. Lifestyle changes such as avoiding or decreasing acidic food intake can help you avoid acid reflux from happening in the first place.
If lifestyle changes are not enough, your doctor may prescribe over-the-counter medication or stronger prescription medications if necessary to help with symptoms of acidity and heartburn when they arise. I think that acidic food is not healthy for anyone because it will cause acid reflux in the first place. Lifestyle changes such as avoiding or decreasing acidic food intake can help you avoid acid reflux from happening in the first place.
There are many reasons someone may crave acidic foods, and it is important to understand a person’s health conditions before jumping to conclusions. We suggest nutrition consultations that can help you identify the root cause of your cravings for acid-heavy food so that we can work together on an effective treatment plan.