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Pickle Juice Against Heartburn

Pickle Juice Against Heartburn
Pickle

Q. Recently I had heartburn that was painful but not devastating. This doesn’t happen to me often, so I had no antacids. Instead, I planned to wait until the burning stopped on its own.

I took a sip (no more than a tablespoon) of pickle juice (from sweet pickle sandwich slices) and to my amazement the pain went away INSTANTLY and didn’t recur. A week or so later, I got heartburn again. This time, the only pickles in the house were dill spears, but once again, a small sip of juice gave me immediate lasting relief.

I’ve only tried this twice, but I’ll never reach for antacids again if I can get some pickle juice. I’ve never heard of this before.

Once could be a fluke, but twice? Have you ever heard of this?

A. Pickle juice seems like the last thing you would want to swallow if you had heartburn. Nevertheless, we have heard from many readers that vinegar, the main ingredient in pickle juice, helps ease indigestion. Here is just one story:

“I am extremely skeptical of alternative medicine and home remedies, perhaps because I taught human physiology for 25 years. Nevertheless, after having little success with drugs, I tried apple cider vinegar in water for my acid reflux. It has been much more effective than any of the standard medications.”

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies. .
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