Heartburn is a burning pain in the chest that happens when stomach acids rise up into the esophagus, irritating it and causing discomfort. This condition can occur for many reasons, including eating too much or too quickly and being overweight. While there are no definitive causes for heartburn, certain risk factors have been shown to be associated with it. One thing you might not know about heartburn is that it has a reflexive response: the sphincter of your stomach contracts to make sure you don’t swallow stomach acid. If you want to test this reflex yourself, grab a friend and follow these steps.
Can you feel your heartbeat in your stomach
Heartburn is a burning sensation in the chest that happens when stomach acids rise up into the esophagus, irritating it and causing discomfort. This condition can occur for many reasons, including eating too much or too quickly and being overweight. While there are no definitive causes for heartburn, certain risk factors have been shown to be associated with it. One thing you might not know about heartburn is that it has a reflexive response: the sphincter of your stomach contracts to make sure you don’t swallow stomach acid. If you want to test this reflex yourself, grab a friend and follow these steps.
What Is Heartburn?
Heartburn is a burning sensation in your chest that happens when stomach acids rise up into your esophagus, irritating it and causing discomfort. This condition can occur for many reasons, including eating too much or too quickly and being overweight. Heartburn is typically caused by the sphincter of your stomach contracting to make sure you don’t swallow stomach acid, but there are no definitive causes for heartburn.
Causes Of Heartburn
It may sound surprising, but heartburn can be caused by a number of factors. There are no definitive causes, but certain risk factors have been shown to be associated with it.
Too much acid in the stomach
This is a very common cause of heartburn, especially if you eat a lot of spicy food or have a very acidic diet like coffee, tea, and soda.
Eating too quickly
Many people find that they experience heartburn after eating meals that require them to eat quickly. For example, many people have trouble with eating fast food because they do not have time to chew their food properly, which can lead to stomach acids rising up into their esophagus and causing discomfort. If you are having trouble with this problem, try having smaller meals throughout the day so that you have time to chew your food properly before swallowing it. If you don’t want to eat smaller portions at each meal, try eating regularly throughout the day instead of just three large meals; this will allow your body to get used to digesting smaller amounts of food at each sitting.
People who are obese are at a much higher risk for heartburn than people who aren’t. This is due to the fact that obese people tend to have larger stomachs, which can cause more acid to be produced and rise up into the esophagus if it isn’t properly controlled.
Having a hiatal hernia
This is an abnormal bulge in the lower part of your stomach that can occur because of weak abdominal muscles and an oversized stomach. If you have a hiatal hernia, your stomach may be able to push into your diaphragm, causing acid from the stomach to rise up into your esophagus when you eat or drink something acidic.
Eating too quickly on an empty stomach
If you eat something acidic while you are still hungry and not yet full, such as after work or after dinner but before bed, then this can cause heartburn because your stomach acid will rise up into the esophagus before you have time to digest it properly.
Eating high-fat foods
High-fat foods can cause heartburn because they cause the same symptoms of heartburn due to the fact that they tend to make your stomach produce more acid and raise it up into your esophagus.
Not eating enough fiber
Fiber helps to keep your digestive system running smoothly by providing a much-needed food source for the bacteria in your intestines, which then produce a natural acid that helps to break down food and prevent stomach acids from rising up into your esophagus and causing discomfort. When you don’t get enough fiber in your diet, especially when you are eating too much meat, then chances are that you will have problems with heartburn because you won’t be able to process all of the food in your stomach properly and so it will not be broken down completely before being passed through your system.
Eating too much food
When you eat too much food, then your stomach may be unable to process all of it, causing it to become bloated and your stomach to produce more acid. This can cause heartburn because the excess acid will rise up into the esophagus before it has a chance to be properly digested and broken down.
Having poor digestion
If you have a bad digestive system, then your body may not be able to process all of the food that you eat properly, which can cause heartburn due to the fact that some foods will be left unprocessed in your stomach or intestine and will cause acid from them to rise up into your esophagus when you eat something acidic.
Not getting enough sleep
Lack of sleep can cause heartburn due to the fact that if you aren’t getting enough restful sleep at night, then your body will not produce enough saliva and gastric juices during the day, which can cause you to have problems with heartburn.
Smokers tend to have more problems with heartburn because cigarette smoke is a known irritant that can cause irritation of the esophagus and stomach, which may lead to acid reflux and heartburn. A study in the Journal of the American Medical Association said that smoking increases the risk of developing esophageal ulcers by 50% and it also increases the risk of having acid reflux by as much as 20%.
The Sphincter Of Your Stomach Contracts When It Detects Acid
- Start with a clean glass jar.
- Place your index finger on the bottom of the jar, and place your thumb on top of it.
- Put a small amount of water in the jar.
- Put one piece of bread inside the jar so that it is submerged in water and covered by your fingers.
- Make sure that the bread is not touching the lid or sides of the jar, and put a spoonful of lemon juice on top of it to taste.
- Allow this mixture to sit for about 30 seconds before swallowing if you can bear it down without coughing or choking.
Testing The Sphincter Reflex
- Eat a light meal or drink a glass of water to make sure your stomach is empty.
- Lie down on your back next to a table and have someone place their hand on your stomach over the top of your shirt, with their palm facing up.
- Begin to take deep breaths and clench your fists as you feel the sphincter reflex contract around your hand.
- Hold the contraction for 10 seconds and release it slowly by taking one deep breath in and exhaling fully before inhaling again; repeat this process until you feel like you’re able to relax enough to stop holding the contraction.
- Once you are relaxed, slowly remove your hand from the stomach while continuing to breathe deeply, remembering not to swallow any air during this time.
Although heartburn is not a serious condition, it can be a very uncomfortable one that can cause pain, stomach aches, and even nausea. One way to test whether you have heartburn is to feel for your sphincter reflex. If your sphincter reflex is doing its job, you should feel some pressure in your abdominal wall when you swallow. It is important to note that this is a subjective test, so if you don’t feel it, you could still have heartburn.