Best Cereals for Acid Reflux: A Dietitian’s Recommendations (2023)

Choosing the best cereals for acid reflux can seem like an impossible task with so many options at the store. After all, you’re simply looking for the best food to start the day without the discomfort of burning in your throat.

I’ve compiled the top list of best cereals for acid reflux to improve your overall health, improve your comfort and in turn improve your quality of life.

Read on to find out the best cereals that a nutrition expert would recommend!

If you’re looking for even more cereal recommendations, you can find more here!

Understanding Acid Reflux

man clutching his stomach and a big greasy burger in front of him.

A key to figuring out how to balance a healthy diet when dealing with acid reflux, is understanding what acid reflux really is. 

At the entrance of your stomach is a valve called the lower esophageal sphincter. When it functions properly, as soon as food passes through to the stomach, this valve closes.  However, when it doesn’t, acids from the stomach travel up into your esophagus. 

This can result in a burning sensation.  If you suffer from this feeling, know you are not alone!  Choosing food that doesn’t exacerbate the issue can be a key to mitigating these symptoms.  

How to Choose the Best Cereals for Acid Reflux

When dealing with acid reflux you must be diligent when picking the foods you eat.  How you start your day has always been important. 

With acid reflux, what you choose to eat at the beginning of the day can dictate how you feel throughout it.  One thing to note is that you do not have to have a boring breakfast because you are dealing with acid reflux.  Food can still be delicious and filling without triggering your acid reflux.  

When choosing your breakfast it is best to look for foods that are whole grains, savoury foods and some sweet fruits. Here you can find a few ideas to liven up your breakfast to start your day off right and mitigate your acid reflux symptoms.

Best Cereals for Acid Reflux (& More!)

Here is the game changing list of best cereals for acid reflux, so if you need a big boost to your day without the discomfort, try these!

Oatmeal

delicious bowl of oatmeal on a brown board.

It is easy to assume that oatmeal is a boring breakfast.  However, what you add to it can make all the difference.  Oats are high in fiber that can help absorb the acids in the stomach.  Do not be afraid to add fruits such as banana slices or papaya to liven it up. 

Oatmeal can be one of your best breakfast choices because it is rich in fibre, carbohydrates and a small amount of protein. You can add more protein by scooping in some nut butter to make you feel full for a long time!

It will be a fulfilling meal to start your day off with!

Fibre 1 Cereal

With ten grams of fibre per serving, add this cereal with some skim milk which has been shown to reduce stomach acid irritation.

You can also try an alternative milk if you’re finding regular milk triggers your acid reflux. Add in some berries on top and you’ve got a complete breakfast.

fibre 1 cereal box.

Yogurt and Fruit

This is a quick on the go type of meal if you are in a rush in the morning or even want to sit down and take your time.  The best part of having yogurt and fruit is that it can be different each day. 

There are so many different flavors of yogurt and different fruits you can add to it, that it won’t get monotonous each morning.  Not only is yogurt filling, adding fruit can add a bit of sweetness to start your day off without you feeling nauseated as the day progresses.

Try Greek Yogurt that is high in protein to create a more satiating breakfast. Adding some crushed walnuts and hemp hearts on top can make it seem like a full breakfast too.

red yogurt bowl with fresh berries on top.

Whole Grains

Whole grains absorb stomach acids in a similar way to oatmeal.  Whole grains such as toast or English muffins can be filling and tasty options that don’t come with acid reflux symptoms as the day goes on. 

You can add a variety of options to add variety with different nut butters and you can add some fun to your dish with some peach slices as well.  Don’t be afraid to mix it up and add different spreads onto your grains that are low in acidity.

Try to avoid citrus spreads as these can cause more reflux.

Boiled Eggs

These are a simple breakfast yet a great source of protein to start your day off with.  Add some tea and a granola bar and your day is off to a winning start!  It is wise to note that these should not be prepared in oils or butters. 

While some say that eggs can trigger some acid reflux symptoms, if paired with ginger tea; and prepared in water, it should limit any discomfort.  

Smoothies

When on the go or just craving something sweet, a smoothie is always a great way to go.  When choosing what to add into your smoothie, be aware not to choose acidic fruits. 

Try to avoid citrus fruits but instead use delicious fruits such as strawberries or blueberries for some fresh flavors.  Add some peanut butter to add a bit of protein and almond milk and you have a great smoothie to start your day with!  

Sweet Potatoes

Offering a healthy dose of fibre and a sweet flavour, sweet potatoes are a great addition to an egg breakfast. Toss it with some olive oil and either bake or toss it in a frying pan.

It will help to fill you up without triggering those stomach acids!

Foods to Avoid with Acid Reflux

Making wise choices about what to eat to combat acid reflux has a flip side of being careful on what foods to avoid that can trigger it.  Listed below are some foods that would be best to limit or avoid if possible.  

Acidic Foods

When you are on an empty stomach and eat acidic foods such as citrus fruits like pineapple, grapefruit or lemons, this can cause acid reflux.  If you are going to indulge in these fruits, make sure you do it on a full stomach that can help lessen the severity of the reflux.  

Chocolate

I know this one will be tough to eliminate for many people.  It is always a sweet indulgence.  While a small amount of chocolate from time to time shouldn’t trigger a severe reaction, it is best to limit the amount to special occasions or smaller serving sizes.

variety of chocolates spread across a screen.

Coffee

While for some this may be even more difficult to quit than chocolate, coffee can be a contributing factor to acid reflux.  Any beverage that contains high amounts of caffeine can contribute to acid reflux, so it is best to monitor your intake and set healthy limits for yourself to not trigger your heartburn symptoms.

Alcohol

Hard liquors, beer and mainly red wine have been known to cause heartburn.  It is best to stay away from these drinks or limit the amount you drink.  It is best not to drink on an empty stomach as well.

Fried Foods

Fatty foods such as deep fried foods tend to stay in your stomach longer while digesting.  As your stomach breaks these foods down, there is an increased risk of indigestion and stomach acid.  This can cause reflux and so limiting how often you eat these types of food is wise.

plate of French fries with a green fork sticking in it.

Spicy Foods

It goes without saying that spicy foods can irritate your stomach lining and cause severe discomfort.  While you don’t need to eliminate spicy foods all together, it is best to limit the amounts you ingest.  Spicy foods can have wonderful flavors and are hard to give up!  So know your limits and be aware of how you are feeling.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I eat cereal while having acid reflux?

Any cereal that is high in fibre and low in acidic qualities is best.  You can have anything from whole grains, oats to yogurt with fruit.  Having acid reflux does not mean boring food!  You can enjoy flavors and variety while limiting your symptoms.

Is cereal with almond milk good for acid reflux?

Yes!  Almond milk is very low in acidic properties making it an excellent choice to use while having cereal in the morning.

What is a healthy snack for acid reflux?

Non-citrus fruits such as melons, bananas, apples or strawberries are an excellent snack to have as they are low in acidic qualities.  Alternatively you can have crackers with nut butters, oat-based bars and nuts, yogurt with berries and veggies with hummus.  All are great options!

What milk is good for acid reflux?

Almond milk is a great choice of milk when trying to limit heartburn associated with acid reflux.  Also, nonfat milk is an alternative choice that shouldn’t cause too much indigestion.

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Michelle Saari is a Registered Dietitian based in Canada. She has a Master's Degree in Human Nutritional Sciences and is a passionate advocate for spreading easy to understand, reliable, and trustworthy nutrition information. She is currently a full time online entrepreneur with two nutrition focused websites.

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