Valentine’s Day, Chocolate, and Heartburn
Valentine’s Day is synonymous with chocolate and flowers. Love may hurt sometimes, but chocolate may hurt you more. If you or your loved one suffers from acid reflux, heartburn may disrupt your Valentine’s day. Chocolate, rich in fat, sugar, and caffeine triggers heartburn in most acid reflux patients. The mechanism by which chocolate induces acid reflux and heartburn is not well known but it is believed that chocolate relaxes the lower esophageal sphincter muscle. A relaxed sphincter allows gastric content like acid to reflux into the food pipe and cause heartburn.
If you suffer from heartburn, Houston Heartburn and reflux Center recommends reducing or avoiding chocolate consumption, especially on Valentine’s day. The combination of chocolate with other heartburn trigger food items like champagne or coffee further exacerbates acid reflux. Houston Heartburn and reflux Center recommends flowers (lots of flowers) as an alternative to chocolate on Valentine’s day. Love can give you heartaches but if you suffer from acid reflux, chocolate consumption is most likely to give you heartburn.