Q. I have a new patient with severe heartburn. As a naturopathic physician, I find taking a person off their particular food allergens usually clears heartburn up permanently.
I saw her yesterday and she had a bad episode during our visit. I watched her stop it almost immediately with two almonds. She says it works every time.

A. Your patient is not the first person to report that a few almonds can prevent or stop heartburn. Last year one reader wrote: “Almonds after every meal seem to be working for me. I haven’t taken Zantac for the past two weeks and I haven’t even needed much antacid.”
A review on food allergies in the Journal of the American Medical Association (May 12, 2010) suggests that food allergy may not be as common as some people believe, affecting fewer than 10 percent of adults. The authors conclude, though, that more than 2 percent do have food allergies and many others have some food intolerance. Avoiding foods that cause heartburn makes sense.

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  1. S Parest
    Reply

    Funny, but Almonds give me heartburn.

  2. Alan C.
    Reply

    I have taken antacids since 16 (I am 68). When the Prescription drugs came out, I was delighted. I have taken everything from Tagamet to Nexium, which I have been on for the last 4 years. After reading about the success with almonds, I tried it and was astounded at how effective it was. On my first try, I went for 8 days without Nexium. I would eat 2 or 3 almonds before meals. Now I take Nexium only after a spicy meal. I read your column weekly in the Dallas Morning News.
    Thanks for the info.
    Alan C.
    Mesquite, TX

  3. Charlie
    Reply

    I have been taking Prilosec and Anti-Acids as needed for heartburn. Many times caused by Red Sauce foods. After reading about Almonds, I tried them and have not taken Prilosec or Anti-Acids since. I dunno how or why they work, but they do… They Work IMMEDIATELY. It is hard to believe. I have even gotten out of bed to eat almonds and I am still surprised each time at how well they work.

  4. Helga M.
    Reply

    I read this and am wondering whether or not this will work when trying to get off Prilosec OTC. I had an esophageal ulcer 4 years ago, and have been taking Prilosec OTC ever since then. I would like to get off it, but nothing I have tried so far has worked. What is your opinion on the Almonds? Thanks for an answer.
    PEOPLE’S PHARMACY RESPONSE: ALMONDS ARE WORTH A TRY. SO IS DGL, SUGARLESS CHEWING GUM, AND IN CASE OF A NASTY EPISODE, OTC CIMETIDINE OR CALCIUM CARBONATE.

  5. Naomi F. B.
    Reply

    Will surely try this tonight.

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