Low-Acid Coffee

Reflux Be Gone! How Low-Acid Coffee Saves the Day [A Gut Expert Explains]

Written by: Vincent Pedre M.D. | June 28, 2024 | Time to read 5 min

Hey coffee lovers! We all know that coffee is more than just a drink – it’s a ritual, a comfort, and for many, a necessity to kickstart the day. But let’s face it, the high acidity in regular coffee can be a real bummer for those of us with sensitive stomachs or acid reflux. That’s where low-acid coffee comes in, offering a smoother, gentler alternative without skimping on flavor. Today, we’re diving into the health perks of low-acid coffee.

What Makes Coffee Acidic?

Coffee’s acidity is a complex characteristic influenced by several factors, primarily the type of beans used and the roasting process.

Bean Origin and Acidity

Certain coffee beans naturally contain higher levels of acids, particularly those grown at high altitudes in regions such as Ethiopia and Colombia. These acids, including chlorogenic acids, contribute to the bright, tangy flavor profile that many coffee aficionados appreciate. However, these same acids can be harsh on the stomach, especially for individuals prone to gastrointestinal issues, stomach upset, or acid reflux (MDPI).

The Role of the Roasting Process

Did you know that the roasting process significantly impacts the acidity of coffee? During roasting, coffee beans undergo numerous chemical changes, including the breakdown of chlorogenic acids. The longer and darker the roast, the more these acids are broken down, which typically results in a less acidic cup of coffee.


Here’s a closer look at how roasting affects acidity:


1. Light Roasts: These are roasted for the shortest amount of time and retain most of their original acids. This results in a bright, acidic flavor that can be sharp and sometimes harsh on sensitive stomachs.


2. Medium Roasts: These roasts strike a balance between acidity and body. While some of the acids are broken down, medium roasts still retain a noticeable acidity, though it’s often more mellow compared to light roasts.


3. Dark Roasts: Dark roasted coffee is roasted the longest, breaking down most of the acids. The key here is to roast carefully to not burn the beans. This results in a smoother, less acidic cup that can be gentler on the stomach. The flavors are richer, sometimes with notes of chocolate or caramel, and the acidity is significantly reduced.

Why High Acidity Can Be Tough on Your Stomach

If your morning brew leaves you with an upset stomach or battling acid reflux for hours after having your cup of java, low-acid coffee might be your new best friend. High acidity in coffee can irritate the stomach lining, especially in individuals with conditions like acid reflux, chronic gastritis, or ulcers.


The acids can increase stomach acid production, leading to discomfort, heartburn, and indigestion. For those with sensitive digestive systems, this can make enjoying a regular cup of coffee a challenging experience, making it a tough choice between enjoying what you love while paying the price, or foregoing coffee al together and missing out on the joy of tat morning ritual.


Low-acid coffee, designed to be kinder on your stomach, could be the answer you’ve been looking for if you have a sensitive stomach.

Low-Acid Coffee Is Better For Your Gut

Low-acid (dark-roasted) coffee is crafted to minimize these harsh effects while still delivering on flavor. By selecting beans naturally low in acid and using specific roasting techniques to reduce acidity further, low-acid coffee offers a solution for those seeking a more stomach-friendly option. Whether you prefer a light, medium, or dark roast, there are low-acid choices available to suit every taste.


So, if your morning brew has been giving you grief, it might be time to explore the world of low-acid coffee.

Saying Goodbye to Acid Reflux

Acid reflux is no joke – the burning sensation, the discomfort, it’s enough to make you rethink your love affair with coffee. But don’t worry, low-acid coffee can help here too. By cutting down the acidity, it reduces the chances of triggering those nasty reflux symptoms.


Some low-acid coffee blends even add chicory root, which helps reduce stomach acid production. So, you’re not just lowering the acid; you’re getting a little extra help in keeping acid reflux at bay. Imagine enjoying your coffee without the fear of heartburn – sounds like a dream, right?

Smooth Flavor, No Sacrifice

smooth flavor

There’s a myth that low-acid coffee is bland or lacks that rich, robust flavor we all crave. But that’s just not true. Thanks to modern roasting techniques, low-acid coffee can be just as delicious as its high-acid counterparts.


It all starts with the beans. Regions like Brazil, Sumatra, and Nicaragua produce beans that are naturally lower in acid. The coffee-roasting process plays a crucial role in maintaining these low acid levels. Roasters use precise temperature control to avoid over-roasting, which can cause beans to become burnt (Starbucks, anyone?) and increase acidity. Instead, they apply a slow and controlled roasting method that enhances the natural flavors while keeping the acidity low. Studies show that light to medium roasts preserve the beneficial compounds and lower acidity in coffee.


Whether you love a strong espresso, a refreshing cold brew, or a classic drip coffee, there’s a low-acid option that will satisfy your taste buds.

Nutritional Perks of Low-Acid Coffee

low-acid coffee

Low-acid coffee isn’t just easier on your stomach – it’s packed with nutritional benefits too. It’s loaded with antioxidants, which fight off free radicals and reduce inflammation. This can help protect against chronic diseases and keep you feeling your best.


As we explored in my previous blog post — Coffee’s Double Power — coffee is an amazing boost for both your brain and your muscles. Plus, low-acid coffee is a good source of essential nutrients like magnesium, potassium, and B vitamins. These nutrients support muscle function, nerve health, and energy production. 

Protecting Your Pearly Whites

white teeth

We all know that high-acid foods and drinks can be tough on our teeth. They can wear down the enamel, leading to sensitivity and cavities. Low-acid coffee can help protect your dental health by reducing exposure to these harmful acids.


Switching to low-acid coffee means less risk of enamel erosion. And if you combine this with good oral hygiene – like rinsing your mouth with water after drinking coffee and regular brushing – you can enjoy your coffee without worrying about your teeth.


And for extra whitening from the comfort of your home without the expensive visits to the dentist, I use Periogel with teeth trays as part of my nightly ritual.

Doing Good for the Planet

Doing good for the planet

Choosing low-acid coffee can also be a win for the environment. Many low-acid coffee brands prioritize sustainable farming practices, which are better for the planet and support local communities.


Shade-grown coffee, often found in low-acid blends, promotes biodiversity and reduces the need for chemical fertilizers and pesticides. It’s good for the environment and produces high-quality beans. Plus, buying fair trade low-acid coffee ensures that farmers are fairly compensated for their work, supporting ethical practices in the industry.

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Final Sip

Low-acid coffee offers a host of benefits, from easing digestive woes and reducing acid reflux to providing a rich, flavorful coffee experience without the high acidity. It’s a smart choice for anyone looking to enjoy their coffee without the side effects. Transform your morning routine and savor the smooth, robust flavors of low-acid coffee, knowing it’s gentle on your stomach and good for your health.


Whether you're a long-time coffee lover or new to the brew, becoming conscious of your coffee bean choices and switching to low-acid coffee can offer multiple health benefits that you may not been aware of before reading our coffee blogs, starting with smoother digestion. Imagine waking up every day to a delicious cup that not only tastes amazing but also supports your gut health. Give your mornings a healthy, flavorful upgrade and discover the joy of drinking coffee that loves you back. Try our HAPPY GUT ® low-acid coffee today and feel the difference it can make in your life.

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