Food Vs Acidity

What’s not to love about food? With so many cuisines and dishes available to choose from, and herbs, spices and other ingredients granting each one that unique taste and aroma, each meal can definitely be a culinary experience. It’s important to know though that when it comes to acidity, not all foods are made equal. We know that the last thing you’d want is for acidity to ruin what would be an enjoyable meal for you or your family, so we’ve put together some tips to help you better understand the food you eat.

How Your Diet Can
Lead To Acidity Symptoms

Our bodies get nutrients we need to live from digestion of the food that we eat. To digest the food, stomach acid is needed. Sometimes, the stomach produces too much acid or the sphincters (muscles) that help keep acid in the stomach can weaken.1 This leads to acid escaping from the stomach into the esophagus, causing acidity symptoms.1

Does The Food You
Love Cause Acidity?

Some of the popular foods we eat may contribute to acidity symptoms, especially oily or fatty foods and spicy foods.1–4 If you or anyone in your family suffers from symptoms of acidity it may help to reduce intake of these.

Glass pot with ghee

Desi ghee

Three red chillies

Chilli pepper (mirch)

Chunk of meat

Fatty meats

Stem of curry leaves

Spicy curries

Cooking oil in a glass bottle

Cooking oils

Two samosas

Fried or deep-fried

What Foods Are Good To Eat?

In the same way that some foods might contribute to acidity, others may help reduce its occurrence. Certain foods, particularly ones that are high in dietary fibre,5–7 aid digestion and therefore can help you and your family avoid acidity problems.

Rice in a spatula


Bowl of yoghurt  with toppings

Yoghurt (dahi)9

Shiny red Apple


Ripe dates


Lentils in a spatula


Chickpeas in a bowl

Chickpeas (channa or cholae)7

Kidney beans in a bowl

Kidney beans (rajma)7

A Healthy Recipe For You To Try

Now that you know which foods to eat more of and which foods to avoid for acidity, planning meals for you and your family should be easier. In fact to get you started, here’s a recipe for vegetarian chickpea sandwich that you can try – it’s a simple dish that you can prepare for your family to enjoy on almost any occasion!

Ingredients for patties

1½ cups chickpeas

1 stalk spring onions, finely chopped

½ cup corn and/or other vegetables of choice, finely chopped

½ tsp cumin, ground

½ tsp paprika

½ tsp cayenne pepper

¼ cup whole wheat flour or bread crumbs

Olive oil and salt to taste


Ingredients for sandwiches

Bread slices

Tomato, cut round

Lettuce, halved

Avocado, sliced


Cheddar cheese



1. In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients for patties. Add olive oil and form into medium sized patties

2. Transfer patties to a pan and lightly fry until golden brown on each side

3. Slather 2 bread slices with mayonnaise

4. On one of the bread slices, place the chickpea patty and top with tomato, lettuce, avocado slices and cheese, then close with the other bread slice

5. If you have a panini maker: place the sandwich in it and grill it for 5 minutes till the bread turns golden brown

6. Otherwise, place the sandwich on a pan, grease lightly with butter and toast it till bottom slice turns golden brown. Flip and toast other side till golden brown

7. Serve warm

The beauty of preparing your own meals is the flexibility. For any recipe you can reduce the amount of ingredients you use or even substitute them entirely for healthier alternatives. This way, you’re still able to prepare that delicious meal without worrying about triggering acidity. Also, nothing beats the feeling of enjoying a home-cooked meal together as a family. To learn more about diets, you can always consult your dietician.

Eat Well And Be Your Best

There’s no reason to let acidity stop you or your family from enjoying food. Knowing which foods can potentially trigger heartburn lets you moderate your intake or pick healthier alternatives – a big step in avoiding an acidity episode.

Of course, acidity can still occur from time to time. Should you, your partner or your children (over 12 years of age) find symptoms like heartburn interfering with a delicious meal, you may consider using an antacid that is gentle on you but tough on acidity. This helps neutralise the acid in the stomach, letting you and your family get back to enjoying their meal quickly.3

If an antacid isn’t enough to control your symptoms, or if your symptoms worry you, do consult your doctor for medical advice.

  • References

    1. PubMed Health. Heartburn and GERD: Overview. Institute for Quality and Eciency in Health Care, November 2015. Retrieved from
    2. Sandhu DS, Fass R. Current trends in the management of gastroesophageal reflux disease. Gut and Liver 2018; 12 (1): 7–16.
    3. Jarosz M, Taraszewska A. Risk factors for gastroesophageal reflux disease: the role of diet. Przeglad gastroenterologiczny 2014; 9 (5): 297–301
    4. Dyspepsia and gastro-oesophageal reflux disease: investigation and management of dyspepsia, symptoms suggestive of gastro-oesophageal reflux disease, or both. Clinical Guideline, September 2014. National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (UK).
    5. Panda V et al. A comparative study of the antacid eect of some commonly consumed foods for hyperacidity inan artificial stomach model. Complementary Therapies in Medicine 2017; 34: 111–115.
    6. Sharma S et al. Evaluation of antacid and carminative properties of Cucurmis sativus under simulated conditions. Der Pharmacia Lettre 2012; 4(1): 234–239.
    7. Keshteli A et al. The relationship between fruit and vegetable intake with gastroesophageal reflux disease in Iranian adults. J Res Med Sci 2017; 22: 125.
    8. Gonlachanvit S. Are rice and spicy diet good for functional gastrointestinal disorders? J Neurogastroenterol Motil 2010; 16: 131–138.
    9. Akhondi-Meybodi M, Aghaei MA, Hashemian Z. The role of diet in the management of non-ulcer dyspepsia. Mid East J Digestive Dis 2015; 7 (1): 19–24.