Common Reflux Trigger Foods


One morning, I left art class with what felt like radiating pain down my back , through my shoulders and into my throat. I checked myself into the emergency room to get evaluated. After being whisked away to get an EKG, blood drawn and then observed for the following 6 hours I left with the diagnosis of severe Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease  aka-GERD .

The statistics on shows that I am not alone. GERD affects 66% of the adult population at some point in time, each year. Some foods called trigger foods can cause GERD.


  • chocolate: contains methylxanthine, a chemical that can relax the muscle between your esophagus and stomach, allowing acid to flow into the esophagus
    • spicy foods: can increase the production of stomach acid
    • high-fat and fried foods: take longer to digest, increasing the risk of a backflow of acid
    • citrus fruits and oranges: can cause symptoms
    • tomatoes and tomato-based foods: contribute additional acid during digestion
    • onions
    • peppermint: can relax and soothe the valve that separates the stomach and esophagus, allowing reflux
    • garlic
    • grapefruit
    • carbonated drinks: cause bubbles to aggravate the esophagus
      • caffeinated drinks: can stimulate acid production
      • coffee: is acidic, with or without the caffeine
      • alcohol: stimulates the production of stomach acid


For me, my trigger food was…Peanut Butter of all things. The minute I stopped consuming peanut butter – I alleviated all of my GERD symptoms. Everyone’s trigger foods are different. Eliminating the trigger food through trial and error- can help you to find which foods you may be most sensitive to.