Is Tuna Good for Acid Reflux? (Expert Answer)

Short Answer: Tuna is good for acid reflux because it has omega-3 fatty acids and is low in acid. However, it also has mercury, which can be harmful in high doses.

Acid reflux is a condition that affects your esophagus, the tube that connects your mouth and stomach.

In acid reflux, your stomach acid flows back into your esophagus, irritating and damaging its lining.

This can lead to various health problems, such as heartburn, chest pain, difficulty swallowing, cough, and even cancer.

One of the key factors in managing acid reflux is diet.

What you consume can affect your lower esophageal sphincter (LES), the muscle that prevents stomach acid from going back up, which can impact your acid reflux symptoms and overall health.

To effectively manage acid reflux, you should consume foods that are low in fat, acid, and spices, like oatmeal, bananas, melons, and lean meats, and avoid foods that are high in fat, acid, and spices, like tomatoes, citrus fruits, chocolate, and fried foods.

Now, tuna is a type of fish that is rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids.

People usually eat tuna fresh or canned, either plain or mixed with other ingredients, such as mayonnaise, celery, or onion.

Tuna is good for acid reflux because it contains omega-3 fatty acids, which have anti-inflammatory and protective effects on the esophagus.

Omega-3 fatty acids can also lower the risk of heart disease and dementia, which are associated with chronic inflammation.

However, tuna also contains some mercury, which can be harmful in high doses.

One can of tuna (165 g) can give you 42 g of protein (84% of your daily needs), 1.4 g of fat (2% of your daily needs), and 0.5 g of omega-3 fatty acids (31% of your daily needs).

Omega-3 fatty acids can relax the LES and reduce the inflammation and damage caused by acid reflux.

However, mercury can accumulate in the body and cause neurological and developmental problems, especially in pregnant women and children.

Furthermore, tuna is a low-acid food, with a pH of around 5-6, and low-acid foods are good for acid reflux.

Because, low-acid foods can neutralize the stomach acid and prevent it from irritating the esophagus.

You can eat tuna safely in moderation, as long as you choose the right type and amount.

More than that can cause mercury poisoning and other side effects.

The FDA recommends that adults eat no more than 12 ounces (340 g) of light tuna or 4 ounces (113 g) of albacore tuna per week, and that pregnant women and children eat no more than 6 ounces (170 g) of light tuna or 2 ounces (57 g) of albacore tuna per week.

Also, you shouldn’t eat tuna if you have a fish allergy or a mercury sensitivity to prevent an allergic reaction or mercury toxicity.

Because, these conditions can cause symptoms such as hives, swelling, breathing difficulties, or neurological problems.

You can buy fresh or canned tuna in your local market or online. Always choose tuna that is wild-caught, low in mercury, and packed in water (not oil).

Because, these factors can affect the quality, safety, and nutrition of the tuna.

You can store fresh tuna in the refrigerator for up to two days, or in the freezer for up to three months.

You can store canned tuna in a cool, dry place for up to three years.

Finally, remember, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet, regular exercise, stress management, and essential medical care, is key to managing acid reflux effectively.

I always recommend my acid reflux patients to follow an acid reflux-friendly diet to improve their overall well-being and enjoy a longer and healthier life.

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About the Author

Abdur Rahman Choudhury

Abdur Rahman Choudhury is a nutritionist in West Bengal, India, with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Biochemistry.

He has done his diploma in nutrition from Fabulous Body Inc (US), and completed various certification courses from several universities. He also has considerable research experience in PCOS.

Abdur currently lives in India and keeps fit by weight training and eating mainly home-cooked meals.

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