I often read or hear that eating one's dinner right before going to sleep is bad for health. How true is that?
If you eat a lot of food, your stomach will be full. And if you lie down immediately after that, your horizontal posture would put the food (and the acid) in such a way that it puts lot more pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter. If you are a patient of acid reflux disease (or if you have a comparitively weak sphincter and are pre-disposed to develop acid reflux disease), then doing this would greatly increase your chances of developing it. So lifestyle modifications doctors prescribe to patients of acid reflux disease is that:
- Eat in small quantities, and in multiple meals
- Give a time gap between dinner and sleep
- Elevate head end of your bed when you go to sleep.
Acid reflux during sleep is notorious because
- It damages the mucosa (from below upwards, all of it) making the patient susceptible to Barrett's oesophagus and Oesophageal Ca
- Acid refluxing into the mouth would mean poor oral hygiene, bad breath in the morning, slowly degrading tooth
- Aspiration of acid can damage the larynx and can cause Ca Larynx, and can even cause chemical pneumonitis.