GERD refers to a condition called gastroesophageal reflux disease and is characterized by heartburn, chest pain, sore throat and reflux. Some foods are common triggers of the disease and you should avoid them whenever possible. These include chocolate and mint, which are often used to prepare dessert. You don't have to skip a sweet treat at the end of a meal, but choosing those that are easier on your GERD will reduce symptoms. Your food triggers may differ from others, so be sure to avoid any dessert with an ingredient that exacerbates your condition.
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Yogurt is not considered a common trigger of GERD and using it to create dessert allows you to enjoy a treat without experiencing discomfort. To prepare, fill a popsicle maker with your favorite yogurt flavor. Insert a stick and freeze. Citrus-flavored yogurts may cause your GERD symptoms to flare, so stick to those that don't contain oranges, pineapples, limes or lemons. Plain yogurt with diced bananas or peaches is also a good option for dessert.
Apples are a fruit that is often safe for GERD sufferers to eat. They are versatile and you can use them in a variety of desserts. Keep in mind that fatty foods and those with large amounts of butter could trigger GERD symptoms. Try baked apples, which you can make by cutting an apple in half, removing the core, sprinkling with cinnamon and baking at 350 degrees Fahrenheit until soft. Slice apples and serve with whipped cream, peanut butter or yogurt for dipping. Apple juice is generally well-tolerated, as well as a good substitute for oil or butter in baked goods. Apple crisp or apple pie recipes that don't call for a lot of butter or oil are also good options.
Jackson Siegelbaum Gastroenterology recommends choosing desserts with 3 grams of fat or less. Look for reduced-fat or fat-free versions of your favorite cookies. Many are sweet enough to satisfy a craving, but are less likely to irritate your GERD and make you uncomfortable. Chocolate is a common GERD trigger, so stay away from cookies that contain it. Low-fat ice cream and cake are also good options.
Fruit is a healthy and sweet treat that you can enjoy with GERD as long as you avoid citrus fruits. Apples, berries, melon, bananas, peaches and pears are all options that most people can tolerate. Mix and match your favorites to create a refreshing dessert. Top with a small amount of whipped topping to add flavor and sweetness. A drizzle of honey or agave nectar is another good way to jazz up a bowl of fruit salad.
Is this an emergency? If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, please see the National Library of Medicine’s list of signs you need emergency medical attention or call 911.