February 29, 2016
Getty Images

Heartburn-Easing Foods That Fight GERDcurried-ginger-carrot-soupChoosing foods wisely is key  View slideshowMore about GERD

The most common—and most painful—symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is persistent heartburn. Heartburn is caused by stomach acid that backs up into the esophagus, the narrow tube that connects the throat and stomach. Everything from a big meal to stress can trigger acid reflux.

Heartburn isnt the only symptom of GERD, however. The condition can also cause a cough and difficulty swallowing, for instance.

It is important to be able to recognize the symptoms of GERD. Left untreated, the condition can cause ulcers and erode the esophagus.