• A hiatal hernia--which occurs when part of your stomach pushes up toward your esophagus--can cause heartburn, acid reflux and even chest pain. But there are foods that can help you if you are suffering from a hiatal hernia.


    Bland foods are best for a hiatal hernia because they tend to cause less pain and burning in the stomach and esophagus. Many physicians recommend the same diet for patients who have a hiatal hernia and those with acid reflux disease.


    Following the recommended diet means avoiding acid-based or fatty foods. For example, if you have a hiatal hernia, you might consume plain cereal and toast for breakfast, a turkey sandwich for lunch and plain fish with green beans and brown rice for dinner.


    Following this diet you can still have sweets (as long as they have little or no fat) and enjoy most fruits, vegetables and meat (as long as it isn't too fatty).


    If you follow a careful diet for your hiatal hernia you may find that you never need surgery or medication for the condition, especially if your hernia is small. Many people find they can control their symptoms with diet and lifestyle changes alone, according to the Mayo Clinic.


    There are many foods that can make a hiatal hernia worse. Foods to avoid include tomatoes, chocolate, onions, citrus fruits and anything spicy or fatty, according to the Mayo Clinic.


    Mayo Clinic: Hiatal Hernia

    Cleveland Clinic: Hiatal Hernia

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