Jennifer Rackley Jennifer Rackley's Blog

Thanksgiving: Burn Free!

Acid reflux can be a serious issue during the holidays and negotiating holiday functions is sometimes difficult. Thanksgiving is one of those holidays that revolves around food. While some foods can be fine for those dealing with acid reflux there are other traditional treats that might best be avoided. Below we will talk about some of the Thanksgiving foods and whether they will helpful or hurtful in your quest for a burn free holiday.


Turkey is a mainstay of most holiday meals. It does not usually aggravate reflux and can be a great choice for acid reflux sufferers. Stick to the low fat cuts of poultry and avoid slathering it with a rich gravy and it can be a wonderful addition to your holiday meal.


Most stuffings are fine for those with acid reflux. Beware of those that are loaded down with garlic or onions if those things tend to trigger the burn for you.

Mashed potatoes

Again, mashed potatoes can be a great addition to your meal as long as they are not loaded down with fats like butter or gravy. Use the toppings in moderation and mashed potatoes will be unlikely to cause heartburn.

Green bean casserole

This is one of my favorite holiday dishes. It isn't the green beans or the canned soup in the recipe that tend to bother people but the fried onions that garnish the top! They can cause heartburn for two reasons. Onions themselves can be a big trigger for acid reflux sufferers and the fact that the onions are fried only worsens the problem. Limit your serving of this dish or avoid the topping to make it more acid reflux friendly.

Cranberry sauce

Sorry folks! For those of you with acid reflux the acidic nature of cranberries in a concentrated version can be brutal. Be careful with this side dish. It can sideline you with pain in no time.


These can also be fine for those with acid reflux but check for things like jalapeņo corn bread or other spicy additions that might make a roll less acid reflux friendly.

Alcoholic beverages

These holiday additions can often trigger reflux. In addition adding alcohol to a meal may also lower your resolve to be careful about what you are eating. This can lead to choosing foods that may be triggers or eating more than you would normally. Be careful with adding alcohol to your meal. Even a small glass can trigger acid reflux in some people.


There are so many different desserts over the holidays. It is best to pick one that is lower in fat and does not contain any triggers (like lemon, coffee flavors or rich dairy). Pumpkin pie can be a healthy dessert for acid reflux sufferers as long as it isn't loaded with spices. Add a dollop of a low fat non-dairy topping and you can have a delicious traditional dessert without triggering the burn.

Remember the best way to avoid the burn is to avoid over stuffing yourself on the holiday feasts! If you have questions about a specific food feel free to post your comment to this blog.


Check with your
doctor first!