Post-Race Heartburn: Reduce It With the Right Foods

Does your post-race beverage often come with a side of acid reflux? If so, you can look to your own kitchen for refuge. The basic items that are already sitting in your pantry can make the most difference in how you feel after you cross the finish line.

More: 7 Post-Race Recovery Tips

Before you rely on a post-race fix, it's important to know why it happens in the first place: "Exercise can trigger heartburn if the LES muscle (the lower esophageal sphincter) is weak or too relaxed, and food or stomach acid 'burps' back up from your stomach into your esophagus," says Rebecca Buffum Taylor a medical writer, editor and publisher for WebMD.com

When you know why it happens, you can work to eliminate heartburn from the start. To lessen your chance of feeling the burn:

- Give yourself two hours to digest a large meal before going for a run or toeing up to the start line. If you've only had a smoothie or small snack the wait time is only 30 minutes to an hour

- Perform strength training before you run, which is less likely to upset your digestive system if you just ate.

More: 10 Strength Training Exercises for Runners

Relieve Heartburn With the Right Foods

If you find heartburn to be a common visitor, there are a number of treatments for acid reflux that are sitting in your kitchen. Here's what to eat and what to avoid so you can put your post-race heartburn to rest once and for all.

Do Eat Oatmeal: This low-fat, low-fiber food soothes your stomach because it's easy to digest and helps to keep your gastrointestinal tract moving.

Similar food options: White rice, cous cous, bran-based cereal

Do Eat Crackers: These, and other dry foods, help to soak up stomach acid as they're digested. After a run, this may be just what your stomach needs to relax and recuperate.

Similar food options: Graham crackers, pretzels, rice cakes

More: Your Most-Important Pre-Race Meal

About the Author

Discuss This Article

Follow your passions

Connect with ACTIVE.COM