Recipe for relief
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon sherry wine vinegar
1½ teaspoons freshly squeezed
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion or
minced shallot (leave out if onions cause pain)
½ red bell pepper, peeled and diced
1 garlic clove, crushed through a press
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
3½ cups home-cooked or canned cannellini or
black beans, preferably organic, rinsed and
drained (see note)
1 (5-ounce) can light tuna packed in olive oil, drained
Tuscan Tuna and Bean Salad
You don’t have to give up flavor to relieve your GERD.
Remember to eat smaller portions and chew well.
In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar and
lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the
red onion, bell pepper, garlic and 1½ tablespoons of parsley.
Add the beans and toss to mix. Crumble the tuna over
the beans and fold to mix. Sprinkle the remaining ½
tablespoon parsley on top. Serve slightly chilled or at
room temperature. Serves 4 to 6.
Note: If using canned beans, use 2 (15-ounce) cans.
Opt for cannellini beans or a mix of cannellini and black
beans. Avoid red kidney beans; they contain a chemical
that can cause stomachaches and inhibits the absorption
of the vital nutrient folate.
Reprinted with permission from The Acid Reflux Solution:
A Cookbook and Lifestyle Guide for Healing Heartburn
Naturally by Jorge E. Rodriguez, © 2012. Published by Ten
Speed Press, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group.
By Carole Howell
GERD, WHICH STANDS for gastroesophageal reflux disease, is a condition in which
acid from the stomach backs up into the
esophagus because the valve at the top of
the stomach is weak or damaged.
GERD is on the rise in the United States,
perhaps because obesity in America is also on
the rise. It’s estimated that almost 23 million
Americans report episodes of heartburn daily.
Young adults may have GERD, but the over-
50s suffer most.
In addition to painful heartburn, GERD
can cause a number of more serious conditions. Inflammation of the esophagus from
refluxed stomach acid can damage the lining
and cause bleeding or ulcers—also called
esophagitis. Scars from tissue damage can
lead to strictures—narrowing of the esophagus—that make swallowing difficult. Over
The Costco Connection
Costco warehouses feature foods for preparing dishes that are less likely to cause
GERD. Also, Costco and the Costco pharmacies carry a variety of reflux medications.
time, the cells can lead to esophageal cancer,
which is often fatal (see page 45). Persons
with GERD and its complications should be
monitored closely by a physician.
From Axid to Zantac, several medications
offer esophageal relief, but none are intended
for long-term use and they should not be used
for more than a few weeks at a time.
In his book The Acid Reflux Solution: A
Cookbook and Lifestyle Guide for Healing
Heartburn Naturally, board-certified gastroenterologist Jorge E. Rodriguez offers the
Modify your lifestyle. Prop up the
bed, loosen your belt or bra, sit up straight
and don’t lie down for at least 30 minutes after
eating. Avoid eating within three hours of
bedtime. Keep a check on your weight, exercise and reduce stress. Establish a regular pattern of physical activity, but don’t overdo it.
Vigorous exercise can actually put enough
pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter so
that it releases and allows a surge of acid.
Eat to avoid reflux. Certain foods
have been scientifically proven to trigger
GERD. Among them are chocolate, coffee,
alcohol and saturated fat. Foods such as
onions, citrus fruits and spices can make an
already inflamed esophagus more painful.
Experiment with your diet and avoid foods
that induce discomfort. Rodriguez recom-
mends choosing natural, unprocessed foods,
consuming less and eating more often. Eat
slowly and chew well. Drink before or after
your meal, instead of with your meal.
JUNE 2013 ;e Costco Connection 55
Carole Howell, www.walkerbranchwrites.