Healthy lifestyle reaps rewards: less frequent refluxA healthy diet and lifestyle are associated with significantly fewer symptoms of reflux disease, U.S. researchers report after analyzing data from 40.000 women.
By Joana Schmidt Published: 07.01.2021, 5:48 pm
Reflux symptoms: Five healthier lifestyle factors are associated with lower risk of reflux disease, suggests U.S. study. What are the effects of a healthy diet. Lifestyle on the incidence of reflux symptoms from?
Response: Patients who considered five diet and lifestyle factors had significantly lower risk of reflux symptoms.
Significance: Results support the importance of lifestyle changes in the treatment of reflux disease.
Limitation: Symptoms were based on patients' self-reported symptoms.
Boston. A healthy diet and lifestyle are generally associated with a lower risk of disease – nothing new so far. However, scientists from Harvard Medical School have now taken a closer look at how a healthy lifestyle affects the incidence of reflux disease in women (JAMA Intern Med 2021; online 4. January).
For the association study, researchers led by Dr. Raaj Mehta analyzed data from the Nurses' Health Study II, in which women were regularly surveyed about lifestyle, diet, and diseases. Almost 43 were taken into account.000 participants, including more than 9000 who reported reflux symptoms that occurred at least once a week. Patients were a median of 52 years old. Were followed up for up to ten years.
More than one-third of cases preventable
For the study, the researchers used an anti-reflux lifestyle score in which up to five points were awarded depending on how many of the positive behaviors were adhered to. The following factors counted:
– Normal weight, defined as a BMI between 18.5 and 25.0; – Non-smoking status; – Moderate to vigorous physical activity for at least 30 minutes per day; – Consumption of less than two cups of coffee, tea or soda daily; and – A balanced diet, including low sugar and low red meat.
Women who adhered to all five items had half the overall risk of reflux symptoms compared with participants who did not consider any of the lifestyle factors. The estimated proportion of reflux cases that could be prevented by healthier lifestyle was 37 percent at the population level, Mehta and colleagues write.
In addition, each factor was independently associated with heartburn: Normal weight appeared to have the greatest impact, with a 31 percent reduction in risk for discomfort, while not smoking was associated with the smallest risk reduction of six percent.
Possible causes of reflux symptoms that may be influenced by appropriate behaviors include a reduction in lower esophageal sphincter tone, an increase in the gastroesophageal prere gradient, and mechanical factors including hiatal hernias, the researchers report.
Also relevant in acid suppression
The researchers also consider that some patients' treatment with proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) or H2 receptor antagonists may have influenced the outcome. However, a subgroup analysis showed that even these participants who followed the above behaviors were at lower risk.