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Two Main Causes of Coffee-Induced Heartburn

Two Main Causes of Coffee-Induced Heartburn

by Alex Brecher March 12, 2022 2 min read

When you think about coffee, do you think about something that is familiar, energizing, reliable, and even essential to life? Or do you think about heartburn?

You’re not alone if you find that coffee seems to trigger heartburn. That’s why many providers say to avoid coffee if you have heartburn. But that can feel impossible if you love coffee. Here’s the scoop on two main causes of coffee-induced heartburn and - spoiler alert - how Alex’s Acid-Free Coffee is different.

Causes of Heartburn

Some people are more prone to heartburn than others. These kinds of conditions and situations can increase heartburn risk.

  • Being pregnant
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Eating meals that are too large or eating just before bedtime
  • Bariatric surgery patients
  • Taking certain medications
  • Being a smoker
  • Using alcohol

Acidity in Coffee

Coffee is an acidic liquid. And acid is a trigger for heartburn. Just think about the foods your doctor may ask you not to eat. Some of them are on this list largely because of their acidity!

  • Tomatoes
  • Chocolate and hot chocolate
  • Sodas, especially caffeinated ones
  • Processed meats and fatty meats
  • Fried foods
  • Pickles
  • Citrus fruits, such as oranges and grapefruit

Coffee is high in acid because of the acids it contains. The main ones are called chlorogenic acids. Caffeine is another acid that contributes to coffee’s acidity. 

Caffeine in Coffee

Caffeine is why so many of us are addicted to coffee. And it has health benefits. But it may have a cost for people with heartburn. Caffeine may contribute to heartburn

In particular, caffeine may relax the lower esophageal sphincter. That’s the ring-like muscle that closes off the stomach from the esophagus. When it relaxes, the opening becomes wider and acid can come up from the stomach. That causes symptoms of heartburn.

How Alex’s Acid-Free Coffee Is Different

Alex’s Acid-Free Coffee is different from other brands. 

  • Low-Acid
  • Alex’s Acid-Free Coffee is ground using heat convection. That means the beans never touch hot metal. The result is a lower content of chlorogenic acid. An independent lab tested the acidity and chlorogenic acid content of our coffee and several national brands. The results were that the acidity and chlorogenic acid content were lower in our coffee compared to the average of the other brands, which included Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts.

  • Caffeine-Free
  • If your doctor says you should avoid caffeine, there’s a coffee for that! Alex’s Acid-Free Coffee comes in a caffeine-free version. It has the same great taste as our regular Fresh Ground French Roast, but virtually no caffeine. Nice!

    It may seem too good to believe, but you may not need to give up coffee just to avoid heartburn. Switching to a low-acid variety may be enough! Alex’s Acid-Free Coffee is lower in chlorogenic acid and overall acidity than leading brands. And if caffeine is a problem for you, just stick to a decaf variety of Alex’s Acid-Free Coffee. You can keep the comfort and zip in your day without heartburn from acidic coffee!



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