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How to Avoid Acid Burn from Eating Pineapple

by
author image Jill Corleone, RDN, LD
Jill Corleone is a registered dietitian and health coach who has been writing and lecturing on diet and health for more than 15 years. Her work has been featured on the Huffington Post, Diabetes Self-Management and in the book "Noninvasive Mechanical Ventilation," edited by John R. Bach, M.D. Corleone holds a Bachelor of Science in nutrition.
How to Avoid Acid Burn from Eating Pineapple
A small pineapple being sliced. Photo Credit Wavebreakmedia Ltd/Wavebreak Media/Getty Images

If you've eaten pineapple and experienced burning in your mouth or chest, it may make you think that pineapple isn't the right fruit for you. Although it's a good source of essential nutrients, pineapple is also an acidic fruit that contains an enzyme commonly used as a meat tenderizer. As such, it can cause the uncomfortable side effects. Knowing how to minimize the burning when you eat pineapple may help you enjoy it.

Dealing With Bromelain

The burning you feel in your mouth after eating too much pineapple is due to bromelain, an enzyme that digests protein. Pineapple is the only natural source of the enzyme, according to The University of Melbourne. Most of the enzyme is located in the stem of the fruit, and you may be able to minimize the effects of the enzyme in your mouth by cutting out the core of the pineapple before you eat it, suggests the website Popsugar.

Managing the Heartburn

If you have gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD, you may have a difficult time tolerating pineapple. Pineapple increases the acidity of your stomach, which may make the pain you feel in your esophagus from the reflux more intense. Pineapple tolerance for people with GERD is individual, and your doctor may be able to help you determine the amount you can eat without pain. In some cases of GERD, avoiding the food that causes the most irritation may be the only solution, according to the McKinley Health Center.

The Truth About Salt

Your Hawaiian neighbor may suggest you add salt to your pineapple to lessen its acidity. Sprinkling salt on your pineapple enhances the sweetness of the fruit, which alters its acidic taste, but may not have much of an effect on the actual acidity of the fruit. Americans already get too much salt in their diet, according to the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. High intakes of salt increase the risk of developing high blood pressure. Adding salt to a healthy food like pineapple may negate some of its health-promoting attributes.

Pineapple Nutrition

Like most fresh fruit, pineapple is low in calories and rich in a number of nutrients that promote good health. A 1-cup serving of fresh pineapple chunks contains 82 calories, 21 milligrams of calcium, 180 milligrams of potassium and 78 milligrams of vitamin C. Calcium promotes bone health, increasing your intake of potassium may help improve blood pressure and vitamin C is an important antioxidant that protects your cells from damage by free radicals. Additionally, the bromelain in the pineapple may act as an anti-inflammatory in the body, according to the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

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