Can Eating Raw Garlic Cause Heartburn?

Raw Garlic

Yes, consuming raw garlic can potentially cause heartburn or exacerbate symptoms of heartburn in some individuals. Garlic is known to contain compounds that can relax the lower esophageal sphincter (LES), the muscle that separates the esophagus from the stomach. When the LES relaxes, it may allow stomach acid to flow back up into the esophagus, causing a burning sensation commonly known as heartburn or acid reflux.

Additionally, raw garlic is a potent ingredient that contains compounds like allicin, which can be irritating to the digestive system, particularly when consumed in large quantities or by individuals who are sensitive to it. These compounds may contribute to digestive discomfort, including heartburn, indigestion, or upset stomach.

People who are prone to heartburn or acid reflux may find that raw garlic triggers or worsens their symptoms. Cooking garlic or using garlic supplements might be more tolerable for some individuals, as cooking can reduce the intensity of certain compounds found in raw garlic that might irritate the digestive system.

If someone experiences frequent or severe heartburn after consuming raw garlic or any other foods, it’s advisable to limit intake or consider alternative ways of consuming garlic, such as cooking it or using it in moderate amounts. Additionally, seeking guidance from a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian can provide personalized advice on managing heartburn or dietary adjustments to reduce symptoms.

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