What is heart burn and how to solve it?

In my clinic, one of my clients had a sleeping disorder. She told me at the same time that she suffered from heart burn for many years and had to take medication regularly. She asked me if I could help her with this issue. After checking her, I told her that her sleeping disorder and heart burn is all linked to the same cause – liver and gallbladder disorder. After a few weeks treatment her sleeping improved and her heart burn stopped. She no longer needs to take tablets for her heart burn. She is very happy for her improvement in health.


In my clinic experience, many people who suffer from heart burn may have this as an issue on its own, or it can be a symptoms of another issue. No matter which one you suffer from, heartburn is associated with liver (gallbladder) disorders. Being able to treat the cause (liver and gallbladder), we will be able to treat the issue (heartburn).

1. How is heart burn associated with liver (gallbladder) disorder? (Cause of heart burn)

i) One traditional chinese medicine text books called “Si Ming Xin Fa” explains that heart burn is associated with the liver; if the liver Qi is not able to move smoothly, heat will build up in the liver which will pass heat to the stomach creating more acid in the stomach.

Chinese medicine also considers all the organs to have a strong relationship, if one organ has a disorder it will pass this onto another. From the five element theory, the liver (gallbladder) are the wood, the stomach (spleen) are the earth.  If the wood becomes overheated it will transfer the heat to the earth causing stomach problems. From this theory we should see heartburn is in the stomach, but the cause is from disorder in the liver and gallbladder.


2. Symptoms of heart burn

People who suffer from heart burn due to liver (gallbladder) disorder will experience the following symptoms; acid reflux, burning or hot sensation, acid reaching the throat, very emotional, stressed or depressed, insomnia, vivid dreams, bitter taste in the mouth especially in the morning, constipation or sluggish bowel movement, dark yellow or pungent urination, stomach bloating, headache, red uncomfortable eyes.
Some may consider heart burn to be a small issue, but if we do not fix it may cause a bigger problem later on such as stomach infections, ulcers, inflammation of the stomach and esophagus lining.

3. What to do if you suffer heart burn

Heart burn is strongly associated with your daily diet and lifestyle due to the cause which we mentioned above. You should pay attention to the following to give you great help for recovery.

i) Reduce pressure and slow down your lifestyle.

ii) Avoid eating hot and spicy foods as this can add heat on top of your liver heat. Chili, garlic, ginger, onions, lamb, alcohol, avoid eating acidic foods.

iii) Having a regular diet, try not to eat too much at once so you are full and also don’t let your stomach to be empty. You should try eating small regular meals so the acid does not affect your stomach lining.

iv) Eat more foods that have cooling characteristics for the liver (gallbladder); celery, carrots, mung beans, green tea, peppermint tea, watermelon, eggplant. If you would like more information about foods you could eat please see my other articles on diet therapy.

v) Do regular relaxing exercise such as walking, light jogging, swimming, tai chi, yoga or meditation. You can also listen to soft music regularly.


4. How can we help

i) When you come to us, we will check your whole body through a traditional diagnosis method (except the causes mentioned above, you may have you own individual health issue), so we will find out exactly your individual cause and help you set up a treatment plan such as chinese herbal medicine or acupuncture to give you a very effective result. At the same time we always give you individual suggestions for your diet and lifestyle.


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Health is not just the absence of illness,it's a philosophy of life.