Are blueberries high in acid

Contents

7 Surprising Facts About GERD and Acid Reflux

Acid reflux occurs when stomach acid flows backwards up into the esophagus. The esophagus is the structure that connects the throat to the stomach.

Among my patients with acid reflux many are surprised to learn that you can have acid reflux without the traditional complaint of heartburn.

Here are seven other facts those with acid reflux are often surprised to learn:

1. Acid reflux affects approximately 60 million Americans. Classically, acid reflux disease was thought to be a disease affecting white males over 50. However, that no longer holds true. Acid reflux affects every race, gender and adult age group.

2. There are two types of acid reflux disease: “Heartburn reflux,” in which the main complaint is heartburn, and “throatburn reflux,” in which the main complaints are chronic cough, frequent throat-clearing, hoarseness and/or a lump-like sensation in your throat. Throatburn reflux is acid reflux without any heartburn complaints. The medical term for heartburn reflux is GERD (gastro-esophageal reflux disease) and the medical term for throatburn reflux is LPR (laryngopharyngeal reflux)

3. Acid reflux can lead to more serious problems. Let untreated, or insufficiently treated, acid reflux disease can lead to severe inflammation in the esophagus, stomach, lungs, vocal cords, and throat. In some cases, untreated or insufficiently treated acid reflux can even progress to esophageal cancer – the fastest growing cancer in America and Europe since the mid 1970s.

4. You should avoid acidic foods if you have acid reflux disease, because they loosen the muscle between the stomach and the esophagus. In addition to the “classic” acidic foods – such as caffeine, chocolate, alcohol, mint, tomato, onion, and garlic – “healthy” foods such as honey, blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries are very acidic too.

5. Healthy acidic foods such as honey and berries can have their acidity neutralized by buffering them with more alkaline (less acidic) foods. For example, berries become safer for people with acid reflux if you add unsweetened almond milk.

6. A low acid, high-fiber diet that contains a balance of all three macronutrients (proteins, fats, carbs) reduces inflammation from acid reflux and helps with sustainable weight loss as well, in my clinical experience.

7. Acid reflux can be diagnosed without having to sedate the patient. In other words, we now have the ability to examine the esophagus for damage from acid reflux with the patient wide awake. This technique, which I helped pioneer in 1998 in the United States, is called TNE (transnasal esophagoscopy).

The traditional way to examine the esophagus had been to place a large camera in the mouth and guide it past the throat into the esophagus. Because the camera went through to the back of the mouth, where the powerful gag reflex was always stimulated, we needed to give patients intravenous sedation to negate the effects of the gag reflex. With TNE, an ultra-thin camera the size and softness of a cooked piece of spaghetti, is placed via the nose into the throat area, then into the esophagus. By going through the nose, the doctor bypasses the back of the mouth, so the gag reflex isn’t stimulated.

Because you don’t have to worry about the gag reflex with TNE, patients don’t need IV sedation. Because the patient is awake, the procedure is much safer, there’s also no need for expensive monitoring , and the patient can go back to work or to play right after the procedure.

TNE is less expensive and more convenient than traditional sedated upper endoscopy. And numerous studies have shown that TNE is as safe as traditional sedation upper endoscopy, as well-tolerated by the patient, and as good as detecting potentially precancerous tissue. Most people have never heard of TNE, but in the past 10 years, more doctors are using this technique and residency training programs are teaching it.

Jonathan E. Aviv MD, FACS, is the clinical director and founder of the Voice and Swallowing Center of ENT and Allergy Associates in New York City. He is the author of Killing Me Softly From Inside: The Mysteries and Dangers of Acid Reflux and Its Connection to America’s Fastest Growing Cancer with a Diet That May Save Your Life. You can reach him on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

Are Blueberries acidic?

Table of Contents

Yes, blueberries are very acidic food. But blueberries are one of the top antioxidant-rich foods. And they score almost every other fruit and vegetables in existence.

Fresh blueberries have a sweet flavor and succulent and nutritious popular summer treat. Apart from the taste blueberries protect us against heart disease, cancer, mental health, blood pressure and maintain bone strength.

The Blueberries are an excellent source of vitamin k and C, manganese and fiber. During the summer season, you will get the fresh blueberries. Out of the season, you will get frozen of dried version of blueberries.

You can simply add the blueberries into salads, non-dairy yogurt, oatmeal and smoothies. You can eat a handful of blueberries just like other fruits.

blueberries

The benefits of adding blueberries in your diet

  • Full of antioxidants

A Blueberries contain a high level of antioxidant level. Antioxidants are natural substances that take diseases and infections by preventing damage in the body. They contain a high level of antioxidants as compared to food like nuts and dark chocolate.

As per the study in the year 2012 blueberries are suggested as a functional food for the benefits of human health. The blue of it holds the majority of its antioxidants.

  • Provides cardiovascular support

The study in the year 2015 showed a significant decrease in blood pressure and pulse rates. It is of the postmenopausal women with hypertension who consumed freeze-dried blueberry powder daily for a period of 8 weeks.

The anthocyanidins containing in blueberries are the key player in heart attack prevention. Use of the blueberries protects the obesity of men and women with metabolic syndrome as well as heart problems.

  • Improves digestion and gut health

Blueberries are powerful to heal your gut. Adding a low bush wild blueberries to your diet increases the health of your gut 8-times. This study is done in 2013 the blueberries have been included in the diet of rats.

This research was done on the animal model to check the comparable effects on the human body. Data is taken from eighteen healthy men who consumed wild blueberries for a period of 30 days. They noticed the positive changes in their gut microbiota.

The antioxidants from blueberries are absorbed and extensively metabolized. Human body shows that it can assimilate their nutrients easily. Eating blueberries after meals help to balance blood sugar and provide protection against the stress etc.

  • Boosting brain health

The regular intake of blueberries helps to boost brain health. It helps to improve memory and also slows down the risk of cognitive diseases related to aging. The people who eat fruits like blueberries with other foods are less likely to develop brain diseases.

Blueberries also lower the risk of oxidative stress in the nerve cells and help them to function them smoothly.

  • Good source of vitamin, mineral and fiber

Blueberries contain the vitamins and minerals, especially Vitamin C. They are low in sugar a cup of blueberries contains 15 grams of sugar. The sugar contains in blueberries is equal to a small apple and bioactive compound that has a negative impact on sugar. This is a great source of dietary fiber and aid in digestion too.

  • Fights urinary tract infections

UTI is a common problem among women. The juice of cranberry helps to prevent certain types of infections. Blueberries are closely related to cranberries and work as an active substance as cranberry juice.

It works like an anti-adhesive and prevents bacteria like E coli to from binding to the wall of your bladder.

  • Fight against cancer

Blueberries contain a large number of phytochemicals, especially Anthocyanins that give berries their color. Anthocyanins play an important role in inhibiting tumor growth helps to decrease s inflammation.

Blueberries lower the blood pressure as they are free from sodium. Due to the lack of cholesterol, folate, vitamin C and B6.

alkaline diet foods

Is your body acidic or alkaline?

Having an acidic body is not a healthy body. An acidic body has a greater risk of all kinds of diseases, chronic illness, weight gain etc. A balanced diet is required to keep your body’s proper functioning.

Eating foods which contain alkaline provides powerful benefits to your health. The Alkaline diet helps to prevent your blood from becoming too acidic. It also promotes your health in a large number of ways.

What is alkaline diet?

The human body has a pH balance that measures the acidity of our body. This level determines the overall state of health that we are not at the risk of serious illness. The blood of the human body is measured on a pH scale ranges from 0 to 14.

Zero is more acidic and fourteen is highly acidic. The ideal pH for optimal health is around 7.35 which is neither too acidic or too alkaline. This is called the neutral state, which directly impacts your state of health.

All foods are categorized on the basis of acidic, alkaline or neutral. However, pH is not measured by its physical properties. It is measured once the food has been metabolized in our body.

To check the food is alkalizing or acidic to the body, it is measured on the PRAL Scale. Potential Rental Acid Load measures the exact amount of acidity or alkalinity of food after it is metabolized.

Being too acidic

Problems of being too acidic?

An acidic body is a symptom that occurs before a serious illness. Too acidic means muscle wasting and reduced bone density. The acidic foods are low in nutrients that promote musculoskeletal health like potassium and calcium.

Symptoms of being the too acidic body

  • Lower energy
  • Confusion or brain fog.
  • Depression and anxiety.
  • Frequent colds and headaches.
  • Joint pain.
  • Muscle weakness.
  • Acne
  • Digestive issues
  • Exhaustion

Our body contains natural compounds like bicarbonate, which works as buffers to neutralize the blood activity. It helps to prevent extreme drops in blood pH. It not only defense the acidic food but fights against the other factors that promote acidity in food like chronic stress.

How to make your body more alkaline

How to make your body more alkaline?

The alkaline diet is important to improve health and try to feel better. It is vital to change the diet, which is manageable as well as sustainable.

  • Start your day with a glass of water and lemon into it

Lemon is acidic, but it reverses the effect as it helps to boost your metabolism. A freshly squeezed lemon is one of the best highly rated energy boosters. This provides clean energy through hydration and oxygenation, which provides extraordinary energy and mental clarity.

Lemon helps to oxygenate the body and optimize enzyme function. It stimulates the liver’s natural enzymes and helps the liver to get rid of toxins like uric acid.

  • Add green vegetables in your food

Green color belongs to nature, this is associated with the good aspects of life. But when it comes to food it becomes hard to think. Start buying green vegetables and experiment on them with new recipes.

Green vegetables are easily available it is easy to cut them and use as a food as compared to a packet to junk food.

  • Get more exercise

Exercise helps your body to sustain a restore its neutral pH balance of tissues, blood and cellular fluids. Doing aerobic exercise is the best method to maintain the acid-alkaline equilibrium in your body as it helps you to reduce accumulation of acid in your system.

Add at least one form of activity in your exercise like walking, dancing, gardening, etc. Exercise is great for your overall health.

  • Keep a regular track on your pH levels

Take a fast and accurate reading of your body’s acidity as well as alkaline levels. It will help you to maintain a balanced pH level in your body. You can buy pH strips to check the pH levels. An easy to read the chart to check the ranges of pH level also comes with these strips.

  • Avoid alcohol intake

Alcohol negatively affects your pH level kidney’s ability to maintain the substances like phosphate in your blood. Due to the imbalance of substances in your blood, it can significantly decrease the effectiveness of your body’s metabolism.

A single drink of alcohol start changes your normal kidney function. What happens when your liver is already damaged from previous alcohol consumption, alcohol affects your kidney’s and harmful for your body as well.

  • Reduce intake of acidic food

By limiting the intake of acidic food helps you to manage the pH levels, prevent kidney stones, eliminate symptoms of acid. The acidic foods in the body should be eaten in strict moderation. These foods are processed cakes, bread, eggs, peanuts, pasta, rice, oats and cold cuts. Limit your intake of alcohol, milk and the drinks that contain artificial sweeteners.

  • Reduce sugar in your diet

The most acidic foods things you eat are full of sugar, soda, cakes and candy. Avoid products like ketchup, yogurt, pasta sauce as all are full of sugar. Sugar comes in different forms like high fructose corn syrup, sucrose and dextrose.

  • Reduce stress

The emotional state affects the pH levels in your body. Stress affects the neuron-endocrine system that increases the cortisol, a stress hormone. It depends on you how you handle your negative thoughts don’t affect your body.

Do meditation and follow some steps to find the inner peace to help you cope, as it also keeps your pH balanced and avoids harming your bones.

  • Eat raw and unsalted almonds

Raw and unsalted almonds help to combat acidity in your body. Almonds are natural alkaline minerals like calcium, magnesium that helps to balance the acidity in your body and maintains blood sugar as well.

  • Avoid coffee

You might have a habit of a cup of coffee after the dinner to help you finish some late night tasks. But the coffee is an acidic factor which can damage the pH level of your body. Replace the coffee with warm water or tea.

  • Go for a brisk walk

Exercise keeps all acid waste products out of your body. A brisk walk is another form of cardio grab your friend and start a walking routine together and stick with the same.

  • Add natural baking soda in water and drink it in the morning

This is a great way you will quickly feel the effects in the desired manner. After waking up drink natural baking soda in a cup of water. It helps to maintain the pH level as well as increasing the energy.

  • Focus on consuming alkaline foods

Avoid the acidic foods, make sure to add foods that help your body to a more alkaline state. Eat fruits, nuts, vegetables, legumes, raw Brussels sprouts, raw mustard greens, sweet potatoes and yams.

Alkaline foods

Alkaline foods are good for your body

#01 – Spinach

Spinach (PRAL Score-11.8) contains calcium which is good for our bones. This is highly alkalizing which is often included in anti-cancer and cleansing juicing protocols. There are many creative and delicious ways to eat spinach.

#02 – Kale

Kale (PRAL Score-8.3) is labeled as the new beef. It contains iron, calcium and vitamin K which help to protect against different types of cancer. You can easily add kale to any smoothie which calls for greens, stir-fries, soups and salads.

#03 – Swiss Chard

Swiss Chard (PRALL Score-8.1) is one of the leafy greens. It provides mega nutrition benefits with vitamins that support cellular health like vitamin K. Swiss chard also contains phosphorus and plant protein, it leaves more alkalizing mineral when metabolized.

Also Read: 10 Ketogenic Diet is Beneficial for us

Celery (PRAL Score-5.2) contains additional cleansing properties. It can easily flush toxins from the human body and a negative calorie food. It takes more calories to chew and digest as compared to the calories containing into it.

#05 – Carrots

A Carrots (PRAL Score-4.9) are high-alkaline food famous for improving eyesight contains vitamin A. Carrots are recommended of beta-carotene and an antioxidant form of vitamin A.

#06 – Kiwi

Kiwi (PRAL Score-4.1) contains a plethora of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. In fact, it contains around 5 times vitamin C as compared to an orange. This is a great source of fiber, which is required to improve digestion. It also contains potassium for muscle function.

I hope the above tips will help your body more alkaline. If your body is acidic, you might face fatigue, headache, lack of appetite, depression, increased heart rate, depression etc. It is important to maintain the pH level to avoid serious health issues like kidney stones, kidney failure, bone disease etc.

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Why certain fruits don’t mix

Fruit typing is part of the overall concept of food combining, which follows the thinking that foods digest at different rates and ingesting an improper mix of foods can cause fermentation within the digestive system, slowing transit time and leading to bloating and possible bacterial imbalances.

The basic rules: Fruits should be consumed alone on an empty stomach; starches with cooked non-starchy vegetables; flesh proteins and dairy with cooked non-starchy vegetables; and nuts and seeds with raw vegetables.

“Proper food combining puts less effort and strain on our digestive system and faster, easier digestion increases the bioavailability of food,” says Mark Hendricks, group fitness manager at Toronto’s Bay Street Club, who follows the protocol himself and advises clients to do the same. “We want our bodies to utilize the nutrients we ingest and this assists in the process and leads to healthy elimination as well.”

As a protocol, it can be particularly beneficial in helping to heal a digestive tract already compromised by an imbalance of flora, notes nutritionist Haylie Pomroy, author of the Fast Metabolism Diet and Fast Metabolism Diet Cookbook. But it’s a restrictive way to eat, nixing snack ideas like an apple with almond butter (a nutritionist favorite), all juice-smoothies that blend veggies with fruit, and arguably every unmodified restaurant meal.

Fruit typing, however, is an easy way to dip your toe into the idea and reap some of the benefits, Hendricks says. Here, his tips:

How to get rid of heartburn – 10 top tips on how to stop acid reflux

Many of us know the tell-tale signs – a burning sensation in the chest and uncomfortable burping after a big meal.

Horribly, around 40% of people in Britain endure the agony of heartburn on a regular basis.

People could even suffer from a ‘silent’ form of the condition – without the more obvious heartburn symptoms.

Silent acid reflux leads to problems such as difficulty swallowing, a sore throat , nagging cough – and, in the long run, an increased risk of throat cancer and oesophageal cancer.

Don’t worry though, as we have some top tips to help you reduce acid reflux and calm your heartburn symptoms…

1. Cut out smoking and avoid passive inhalation of cigarette smoke.

(Image: PA)

Yes, another thing smoking is really bad for! Nicotine in cigarettes relaxes the muscles in the lower part of the esophagus, and as such is less likely to keep stomach acid at bay inside your stomach, causing the reflux.

As such, steer clear of smoking, and avoid being near others smoking as passive inhalation can have the same effect.

2. Improve your posture.

Once again, the focus is on the lower part of esophagus, which we don’t want to be forcing to relax by sitting or standing with poor posture, as a result this will cause acid reflux.

Stand up straight, and if sitting ensure your upper body is elevated and as vertical as possible.

3. Introduce more ginger to your diet.

But not ginger ale though! Raw ginger, crystallized ginger or ginger extracts have been an old folk remedy for heartburn for centuries, and some still swear by it today.

Consume it by itself or add it to a meal that doesn’t include any potential trigger ingredients.

4. Avoid triggering foods.

There are quite a few foods that are associated with increasing heartburn symptoms and here they are:

  • fried foods
  • high fat foods
  • whole dairy products
  • chocolate
  • spicy foods
  • black pepper
  • garlic
  • citrus fruits, such as lemon and orange
  • tomato-based products
  • generally acidic foods

You could avoid all of these and still get heartburn from sheer volume at meals, instead just eat little and often.

5. Avoid triggering liquids.

(Image: E+)

Sadly, all your favourites should be avoided. These include:

  • alcohol in general (especially red wine)
  • fizzy drinks
  • caffeinated drinks (maybe switch to de-caff for your hot drinks)
  • citrus fruit juices

6. Drink Baking Soda mixed with Water.

Baking soda, or sodium bicarbonate is a natural antacid, and has a neutralising effect on the stomach acid.

Mix a small amount with water and drink slowly, otherwise there may be a laxative effect!

7. Keep yourself at a healthy weight for your age and height.

(Image: Photographer’s Choice)

The more overweight you are, the more pressure there is on your stomach, and as a result the likelihood for acid reflux increases.

Even if you are a healthy weight, losing a little bit of weight (avoiding being underweight though!) should lessen the pressure on your gut.

8. Don’t wear overly-tight clothing.

A bit like being overweight, tight clothes add unwanted pressure to your stomach and therefore will increase acid reflux.

Go looser around your upper body to avoid exacerbating symptoms.

9. Enjoy chewing gum and liquorice.

This one is a bit nicer – chewing gum and foods containing the liquorice root have been shown to have a neutralising effect on stomach acid, and therefore reduces heartburn symptoms.

Don’t blast through the gum though – or you may have that laxative effect!

10.O ver-the-counter medicines.

A woman with heartburn (Image: PA)

There are a host of medicines available in pharmacies and shops that can help put a stop to heartburn.

The most popular tend to be antacids or oral suspension tablets.

If in doubt, then check with your pharmacist.

Do you have any top tips to help reduce heartburn? Let us know in the comments below.

What’s in your strawberries?

In Short

  • Wild strawberries have higher aroma intensities and significantly richer flavours because they contain greater quantities of odorous molecules
  • Genes for odour molecules are lost during the breeding process

Source: © iStock

Doubtless God could have made a better berry, but doubtless God never did’, said a 17th century writer. This view is shared by many, especially Wimbledon spectators who eat around a million strawberries, ie nearly 30 tons, in a fortnight.

Modern cultivated or garden strawberries (Fragaria x ananassa) are a hybrid species derived from a fortuitous cross between a Chilean and a North American species. They were first bred in Brittany in France in the 1750s. The strawberries we buy in shops are all cultivars (or varieties).

Have you ever wondered what makes the colour, taste and smell of strawberries so attractive? Why do the ones you might find growing wild seem tastier? Is there something in the chemistry? These are questions close to the heart of strawberry producers as they call on science to help them develop their sweetest, juiciest, most fragrant and appealing fruit.

Colour

The colour of strawberries is due to anthocyanins, mainly pelargonidin 3-glucoside (fig 1). Anthocyanins are water soluble pigments found in plant cells. They are also responsible for the red colour in some autumn leaves. Aside from this, anthocyanins can be used as pH indicators – they are pink in acid, purple in neutral and yellow in alkaline solutions.

Strawberries are highly nutritious. They contain very high levels of vitamin C and anthocyanins are also powerful antioxidants, which give strawberries huge health benefits. Some 90% of a ripe strawberry is water, but it also contains sugars, about 80% of which are glucose and fructose. Most vitamin C is made from glucose via the so called ‘L-galactose pathway’.1

Balancing the taste

As consumers, we look for the right combination of sweetness, acidity and flavour in our strawberries. The flavour depends on the balance between several molecules.

As strawberries ripen, their sugar content rises from about 5% in unripe green fruit to 6-9% on ripening. The acidity comes mainly from citric acid which comprises about 88% of the acid content, along with malic acid and ellagic acid. When they ripen, the acidity decreases. As the sugar/acid ratio changes, so ripe strawberries taste sweeter.2 The ripening process is controlled by the hormone auxin. When this reaches its peak, it causes the cell wall to begin to degrade and so a ripe strawberry becomes juicy as well as sweet.

Sniffing out the aroma

Source: © PLAIN PICTURE/LEININGER

Over 350 different volatile molecules have been identified in strawberries and scientists have identified those which contribute to the aroma (known as odorants). To do this, they extracted these molecules from fresh strawberry juice, and identified those with the highest Flavour Dilution (FD) factors (table 1).3 The FD is the amount that the extract can be diluted while the odorant can still be detected.

To find out which odorant contributed to each type of aroma, they made a model juice containing each of the odorants at the same concentration found in the original juice extract. Sensory testers agreed that this model closely matched the real extract.

The next step was to identify each of the individual aromas. They did this by making a series of new mixtures, each containing 11 of the 12 main odorants, with a different molecule missing from each. The testers could therefore find out if omitting that molecule made any difference to the odour. For example, leaving out 2,5-dimethyl-4-hydroxy-3(2H)-furanone (1) or (Z)-3-hexenal (3) was noticed by virtually all the testers, and omitting esters like methyl butanoate, ethyl butanoate or ethyl 2-methylbutanoate were also spotted by most.

This analysis led to the characterisation of five basic sensory impressions of strawberries: caramel, fruity, green, lactone-like and buttery.

Table 1 – Some volatile molecules which contribute to the aroma of strawberries

Odour quality FD factor
4-hydroxy-2,5-dimethyl-3(2H)-furanone caramel 4096
4-methoxy-2,5-dimethyl-3(2H)-furanone caramel, burnt 64
(Z)-3-hexenal green, leaflike 1024
methyl butanoate fruity 256
ethyl butanoate fruity 512
methyl 2-methylbutanoate fruity 256
methyl 3-methylbutanoate fruity 256
ethyl 2-methylbutanoate fruity 128
ethyl 3-methylbutanoate fruity 128
acetic acid sour 1024
butanoic acid sweaty 2048
2-methylbutanoic acid sweaty 256
3-methylbutanoic acid sweaty 256
butan-2,3-dione buttery 256
ethyl 2-methylpropanate fruity 128

Fragrant esters

Esters are molecules which are well known for producing flavours and aromas. They are very abundant strawberry volatiles, in some cases comprising over 95% of the total, with methyl butanoate (4), ethyl butanoate (5), butyl ethanoate, methyl hexanoate, and ethyl hexanoate usually most abundant.

Only a few esters individually make key contributions to the aroma, as their aroma thresholds (the concentration below which the molecule cannot be smelt) vary enormously. For example, the aroma threshold for butyl ethanoate is 5000 ppb, but is only 0.13 ppb for its isomer, ethyl butanoate.

Different cultivars produce different amounts of esters as well as different proportions and so the ratio of ethyl and methyl esters depends on the genotype and the year, as well as upon growing conditions. In the fruit, esters are formed from the reaction between an acyl coenzyme A (acyl-CoA) and an alcohol, catalysed by the alcohol acyltransferase enzyme (AAT; fig 2). As the fruit ripens, AAT activity increases. It is those cultivars with highest AAT activity that produce most ester and so have the strongest smell.4 There are also some lactones (cyclic esters) present in strawberries which contribute to their aroma, notably γ-decalactone and γ-dodecalactone.

The ‘green’ note identified by the scientists comes from the breakdown of certain fatty acids which produces several C6 molecules, (Z)-3-hexenol, hexanal, (E)-2-hexenal and (Z)-3-hexenal (3). The last of these also produces the smell of freshly cut grass and is a key contributor to a fresh strawberry smell.5

Breeding and taste

Of course, as consumers, what we strive for is the perfect strawberry which tastes and smells wonderful and looks inviting. For those breeding strawberries, this means finding a suitable balance of flavour. Varieties or cultivars with poor flavour generally lack esters and may also contain large amounts of the furanones and lactones. Too much lactone can cause a disproportionate peach note.

Producers aim for strawberries offering high yields of big fruit, good appearance, high disease resistance and a long shelf life. However, inbreeding to achieve these characteristics produces commercial strawberries with a narrow genetic base, at the cost of the loss of flavour molecules. Perhaps this is a clue to why people say that wild strawberries taste better and have better aromas than cultivated strawberries?

Wild strawberries

Source: © ISTOCKPHOTO

Compared with cultivated strawberries, the wild species have higher aroma intensities and significantly richer flavours, because they contain greater quantities of odorous molecules, including some extra ones.

In a comparison test between the cultivated variety Fragaria x ananassa Elsanta and the wild Fragaria vesca, scientists found that the cultivated strawberry contained only two terpenoid (highly aromatic) molecules but a wide range were present in the wild sample including α-pinene, β-myrcene, α-terpineol and β-phellandrene as well as myrtenyl acetate and myrtenol.6 These cause the smell of essential oils found in plants such as conifers and herbs such as myrtle and bay which all have strong aromas and flavours.

The usual method of analysing and measuring flavours and aromas in foods is to carry out a headspace analysis. In this technique, samples are sealed in glass containers and the gas given off is analysed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry.

Lost in breeding

Compared with cultivated strawberries, the wild species have higher aroma intensities and richer flavours, as they contain greater quantities of odorous molecules, including some extra ones like methyl anthranilate. Back-crossing with cultivars gives smaller berries with aromas more like wild strawberries.

Finally, something to try out for yourself – researchers have found that adding cream to raspberries markedly reduces the concentrations of flavour volatiles.7 The corresponding experiment with strawberries does not seem to have been reported…

Simon Cotton is an honorary senior lecturer in chemistry at the University of Birmingham

Further Reading

Question

Asked by Let

Is It Safe To Eat Strawberries, Mango And Avocados With Acid Reflux?

Are strawberries, mangos, and avocados okay foods to eat if you have acid reflux, or should I avoid them?

Answer

Many people find that strawberries are fine for them in moderation, and avocado similarly is usually well tolerated by reflux sufferers. While not mango, the papaya has shown some promise to be a good fruit for acid refluxers because the papain in the fruit helps to soothe the acid. You can read more in Joy Buchanan’s post here.

You can get some ideas from some of the resident experts here on Health Central. Tracy Davenport is a resident expert here and she has written an article called The 10 best fast foods for people with GERD. Tracy’s son has GERD and through his experiences Tracy has learned a great deal about coping and about foods that can help ease reflux.

If you’re eating out, you may find this article of tips helpful. As usual, the best way to find out if you tolerate a food is to eliminate it from your diet for a while and then add it back in a little at a time. That can help you determine if those fruits trigger your own reflux symptoms.

Food Acidity: Acid Content of Various Fruits and Vegetables and How to Preserve or Can Them at Home

Looking for Food Acidity: Acid Content of Various Fruits and Vegetables and How to Preserve or Can Them at Home in 2020? Scroll down this page and follow the links. And if you bring home some fruit or vegetables and want to can, freeze, make jam, salsa or pickles, see this page for simple, reliable, illustrated canning, freezing or preserving directions. There are plenty of other related resources, click on the resources dropdown above.

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Acid foods are foods that contain enough acid to have a pH of 4.6 or lower. Acidic foods can be processed safely in a boiling water canner, usually without added acid (lemon juice, vinegar or citric acid). This is necessary to control botulinum bacteria. Acidity may be natural, as in most fruits, or added, as in pickled food. Low-acid canned foods are not acidic enough to prevent the
growth of these bacteria. Acid foods contain enough acid to block their growth, or destroy them more rapidly when heated. The term “pH” is a measure of acidity; the lower its value, the more acid the food. The acidity level in foods can be increased by adding lemon juice, citric acid, or vinegar.

Low Acid Foods

Low-acid foods have pH values higher than 4.6 up to 6.9. (non-acidic, or alkaline foods have pH values of 7.0 or greater) .They include red meats, seafood, poultry, milk, and all fresh vegetables except for most tomatoes. Most mixtures of low-acid and acid foods also have pH values above 4.6 unless their recipes include enough lemon juice, citric acid, or
vinegar to make them acid foods. Acid foods have a pH of 4.6 or lower. They include fruits, pickles, sauerkraut, jams, jellies, marmalades, and fruit butters.

Although tomatoes usually are considered an acid food, some are now known to have pH values slightly above 4.6. Figs also have pH values slightly above 4.6. Therefore, if they are to be canned as acid foods, these products must be acidified to a pH of 4.6 or lower with lemon juice or citric acid. To be safe, we simply recommend always adding 2 tablespoons of lemon juice to each quart of tomatoes or tomato products. Properly acidified tomatoes and figs are acid foods and can be safely processed in a boiling-water canner.

Acidity and botulism

Botulinum spores are very hard to destroy at boiling-water temperatures; the higher the canner temperature, the more easily they are destroyed. Therefore, all low-acid foods should be sanitized at temperatures of 240° to 250° F, attainable with pressure canners operated at 10 to 15 PSIG. PSIG means “pounds per square inch of pressure as measured by gauge”. The more familiar “PSI” designation is used hereafter. At temperatures of 240° to 250° F, the time needed to destroy bacteria in low-acid canned food ranges from 20 to 100 minutes.

The exact time depends on the kind of food being canned, the way it is packed into jars, and the size of jars. When it is even possible*, the time needed to safely process low-acid foods in a boiling-water canner ranges from 7 to 11 hours; the time needed to process acid foods in boiling water varies from 5 to 85 minutes. Note: * in many cases, no amount of water bath canning will kill the type of bacteria present, because the temperatures never rise high enough.

Summarizing, low acid or non-acidic foods must be:

  • pickled,
  • frozen,
  • dried or
  • canned in a pressure canner (where there is a safe recipe determined for them – there is no safe recipe for canning pumpkins and squash)

Below is a summary of foods by pH. For a comprehensive list of the pH values of many fruits and vegetables, including some specific varieties, see this page.

Foods can be acid because they are:

  1. naturally acid foods
  2. foods that have acid, such as vinegar or lemon juice, added
  3. fermented foods, such as sauerkraut. During the fermentation process bacteria produce an acid.

Naturally acidic foods include most fruits, such as:

  • apples
  • berries
  • blackberries
  • blueberries
  • cranberries
  • peaches
  • pears
  • raspberries
  • strawberries

Tomatoes are borderline – and must be considered a special case, with acid added!

Low Acid or Non-acidic Foods

These are considered to be LOW acid foods:

Certain fruits:

  • figs,
  • Asian pears,
  • melons,
  • bananas,
  • dates,
  • papaya,
  • ripe pineapple,
  • persimmons

Almost ALL vegetables, such as:

  • asparagus
  • beans
  • corn
  • cucumbers
  • garlic
  • green beans
  • greens (lettuce, kale, collards, spinach, etc.)
  • onions
  • peas
  • pumpkins
  • squash (summer or winter varieties)

Masterfile

The Canadian Digestive Health Association states that more than 5 million Canadians suffer from heartburn a year. Having struggled with the discomfort of acid reflux myself, I was thrilled when The Acid Reflux Solution landed on my desk. And judging by the commotion it caused around the office it’s safe to assume I’m not alone.

Written by Jorge E. Rodriguez, MD, with recipes compiled by Susan Wyler, MPH, RD this easy-to-navigate book not only comes with easily integrated tips, but yummy recipes like Cuban black bean soup and Asian barbecued chicken. If you, like so many Canadians, suffer even mildly from heartburn we recommend you take a look at some of these helpful suggestions to start getting your digestion back in order the all-natural way:

1. Raise the top of your bed. Though it doesn’t involve eating, this is Jorge’s first step when it comes to starting the fight against heartburn. Because most acid reflux happens while you sleep, he recommends tilting your bed so your chest is above your stomach (a minimum incline of 30 degrees).

2. “Always leave room for a little bit more.” Jorge recommends eating smaller portions more often throughout the day. A majority of the acid production in your stomach is caused when it stretches. The recipes in this book are calculated with portions in mind and designed to ensure you stay fuller longer. It may take a little while to get used to only eating until you’re satiated instead of waiting until you can’t take one more bite to stop.

3. Be mindful of when you’re drinking. Though many experts have said that drinking water during a meal keep you from overeating, for the purposes of heartburn, Jorge says not to drink anything for a half hour before or after eating. Liquids can cause your food to expand, further stretching your stomach regardless of whether you’re eating smaller portions or not. This stretching will increase the amount of acid produced when your stomach expands.

4. Chew, chew, chew. If you eat without even processing what’s going on, chances are you aren’t taking enough time to properly chew or digest your food. Jorge suggests counting to 20 before swallowing your food in order to a) break it up into small enough pieces and b) alert the body that it’s ingesting something. This also helps you to eat more slowly as well.

5. Alleviate pressure on your stomach. Whether it’s loosening your belt or wearing clothes that aren’t too tight around the waist, giving your stomach more room to digest will avoid the production of extra acid and ensure there’s no issue with food passing through the gut. And though we aren’t suggesting you show up to work in a pair of elastic-waist pants, a maxi dress or looser-fitting clothes are a good place to start.

6. Sit up straight. Your mother was right. Not only does sitting up straight help you appreciate your food (by looking at it while you eat you’ll be more mindful), it also stops your stomach from literally folding as you hunch over. Similar to the issue of a tight belt, you want to ensure there’s nowhere for food and acid to go but down (and out).

7. Wait it out post meal. Have a tendency to nap directly after eating? Jorge recommends waiting at least 35 minutes before indulging your food comma to ensure nothing heads back north. He suggests taking a quick walk around the block in order to aid digestion instead of stopping it in its tracks by lying down. The walk will also help waken you up if you’re feeling tired from overeating (see #2 to nip that in the bud).

8. Opt for crackers. If you’ve got to eat within three hours of going to bed (which Jorge does not recommend) he suggests opting for some soda crackers (“just to take the edge off”) instead of having a full meal. If you’re up all night with acid reflux you’ll create a vicious cycle the next day that will only perpetuate the issue when you wake up tired. Hunger is less likely to keep you up than acid reflux.

9. Take time for yourself. Stress and obesity are directly related to an increased risk of acid reflux so be sure you’re managing your mental and physical state. Getting in 30 minutes of exercise a day (even if it’s in 10 minute intervals) and taking time to relax can both ease symptoms. Quitting smoking and cutting back on alcohol fall into this category as well. “Nicotine is a major reflux trigger,” explains Jorge.

10. Know what you can and can not eat. On the top of the avoid list: fried foods, anything minty, chocolate (sorry ladies), processed meats, caffeine and carbonated beverages. As for the belief that tomatoes cause acid reflux? Not true says Jorge. In fact, he encourages readers to “eat like an Italian” promoting meals with lots of vegetables, fresh fruit (both of which have a lot of fiber), and smaller portions of pasta as great heartburn sufferers. And though red meat isn’t totally off the table, the least amount of it you can handle, the better.

For more suggestions on how to beat heartburn pick up, The Acid Reflux Solution, Random House, $25, available now.

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