Author: John Carter

Gastroesophageal reflux disease GERD Symptoms and causes

Does Alcohol Cause GERD

The summary odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated by random effects model to assess the association. Subgroup analysis, publication bias and sensitivity analysis were also conducted. Researchers noted that alcohol may damage the cells in the esophageal and gastric (stomach) linings. They also found that alcohol not only affects the function of the esophagus in healthy people but also causes symptoms in those with inflammation of the esophagus.

Does Alcohol Cause GERD

In addition to potentially contributing to your LES relaxing, alcohol may directly irritate the lining of your esophagus or stomach, Evans says. This irritation may be a factor in GERD symptoms, leading to greater discomfort when your stomach contents enter your esophagus. At the end of the day, and the night, it’s best to avoid drinking altogether; however, we certainly understand the desire to relax a bit and unwind! Experiment a bit and find a drink that works for you, and try to stick to one drink per night. Don’t forget to stay up until two to three hours after the last sip— this will help you avoid the dreaded night regurgitations.

Considering that only a small number of studies reported the influences, our study failed to demonstrate the relation of alcohol to other potential modifying factors. This is because tobacco can stimulate stomach acid and cause the muscles between the esophagus and stomach to relax. Tobacco can also directly damage cells of the esophagus and stomach. When combined with alcohol, it’s easier for cancer-causing substances from smoking to enter these cells.

While there are some well-known foods and drinks that trigger acid reflux, your symptoms may be unique. You might be able to eat a bowl of spaghetti with no problems, yet a glass of wine causes you to experience intense discomfort. Knowing what triggers your acid reflux is an important part of helping you find relief from your symptoms. Researchers have conducted several studies to determine which types of alcohol seem to aggravate symptoms more than others. It’s still unclear which alcoholic beverages may be better than others for individuals with GERD.

According to a 2019 review of 29 studies, consuming alcohol is a significant risk factor for developing GERD. Researchers found that increasing alcohol intake and drinking frequency demonstrated a stronger link with GERD. Working out which specific drinks trigger heartburn, which may be sugary alcoholic drinks for some people and beer for others, and avoiding them will also help reduce heartburn. Heartburn (acid reflux) and GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) share some of the same symptoms, but they are different conditions. While alcohol doesn’t cause acid reflux that leads to GERD in everyone, it’s possible that drinking could make GERD symptoms worse for some people. Acid reflux occurs when the sphincter muscle at the lower end of your esophagus relaxes at the wrong time, allowing stomach acid to back up into your esophagus.

This study asked 25 people with GERD to drink a serving of white wine, beer, or water and then measured if each drink increased reflux. The researchers found that both beer and wine triggered reflux in men and women compared to drinking water only. Alcohol can damage the esophagus, which may worsen symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Additionally, alcohol use may increase the risk of developing GERD.

Therefore, we performed a meta-analysis of observational studies to pool all available evidence to assess the relation between alcohol drinking and the risk of GERD. This meta-analysis provides evidence for a potential association between alcohol drinking and the risk of GERD. The increase in alcohol consumption and frequency showed a stronger association with GERD. Alcohol may damage the lining of the esophagus and relaxes the LES, which makes it more likely that stomach acid will come back into the esophagus. Therefore, experts advise people with GERD to avoid alcoholic drinks.

What to know about alcohol and heartburn

You should also avoid greasy pub food while you are at the bar— high-fat, greasy foods will only worsen your symptoms. Likewise, smoking and secondhand smoke can irritate your GERD symptoms and cause heartburn. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a chronic medical condition that’s caused by the inability of the lower part of esophagus to function properly. As a result, the acid and contents from your stomach back up, repeatedly irritating the more delicate tissue of the esophagus. This results in a burning sensation in the chest (often called heartburn) and irritation of the esophagus. As one of the risks for GERD, the effect of alcohol on the esophagus and stomach differs from its effect on other organs such as the pancreas or liver.

Does Alcohol Cause GERD

Furthermore, dysfunction of the LES and esophageal peristalsis and abnormal gastric acid secretion may be involved in the pathogenesis of alcohol-related GERD. Systemic investigations concerning this matter are still inadequate and further well-designed prospective studies are needed to clarify the effect of alcohol on GERD. GERD is a chronic condition that causes uncomfortable and even painful symptoms. One known contributor is alcohol, but it doesn’t affect everyone the same way. Some research has shown that alcohol reduces acid reflux symptoms while other research has found it heightens them.

Research on alcohol and GERD

This may be due to various reasons, including irritation of the throat or stomach or the way alcohol affects stomach acid. “Carbonated beverages are a common GERD trigger, and more acidic beverages like fruit juices can be a trigger,” says Evans. That means, for example, that a glass of wine might not cause GERD symptoms in a given person, but a cocktail containing soda water or citrus juice could lead to reflux.

However, there were several limitations in the present meta-analysis that should be acknowledged. We hope that there will be more prospective and experimental trials to further study the relation. Second, there was a significant heterogeneity between studies when data were pooled together and it was not explained by the subgroup analyses we performed. Multiple reasons may cause the heterogeneity as we mentioned above, but we could not examine or quantify many of them. Finally, there may be some mutual effects between alcohol consumption and other factors on the development of GERD, such as tobacco use.

  1. First, heterogeneity may exist in the measurement of alcohol consumption.
  2. This is the first meta-analysis to assess the correlation between alcohol consumption and GERD.
  3. Therefore, it has been regarded as a considerable health problem in most of the world.
  4. At the end of the day, and the night, it’s best to avoid drinking altogether; however, we certainly understand the desire to relax a bit and unwind!
  5. Identifying which items cause acid reflux allows you to limit your intake of beer, wine, or liquor.

GERD is classified into reflux esophagitis (RE) and non-erosive reflux disease (NERD) according to the presence or absence of esophageal mucosal breaks. In recent years, GERD is prevalent worldwide, as the range of prevalence estimates was 2.5–33.1% in different regions (El-Serag et al., 2014). It not only affects people’s health and quality of life but also becomes a source of social burden. Some factors have been reported to be related to GERD including Helicobacter pylori infection (Cremonini et al., 2003), a certain diet (Jarosz and Taraszewska, 2014), etc.

Risk factors

If a person has any symptoms in bed, they can try elevating their head by placing a foam wedge or extra pillows underneath it. Experts estimate that around 20% of people in the United States have GERD. It is more common in older adults and people who smoke, are pregnant, or have obesity.

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Everyday Health follows strict sourcing guidelines to ensure the accuracy of its content, outlined in our editorial policy. We use only trustworthy sources, including peer-reviewed studies, board-certified medical experts, patients with lived experience, and information from top institutions. Extra-virgin olive oil has been on bar carts for a few years now, reports Refinery29, namely because it mixes well with alcohol and creates a luxurious, rich drink.

Alcohol appears to interact with the stomach and esophagus on a variety of levels. This can lead to acid reflux and the irritation of GERD symptoms in certain people. This is the first meta-analysis to address the correlation between alcohol consumption and GERD by pooling the observational evidence.