That is a good question, my Dr says it depends on the severity of GERD, and can take up to a year. I don't think healing is the best word either! According to drs it can prevent further damage to the esophagus and if you have mild acid reflux from time to time it can heal it. With us who have GERD symptoms almost 24/7 the best we can get is preventing further damage! Zantac a histamine 2 blocker just helps keep acid down away from esophagus and throat and can help prevent ulcers or heal them. The average time it takes to "heal" acid reflux is about 8 weeks, for us with GERD disease itself it's an ongoing problem!
The last thing you want to do is cut down on stomach acid, it is critical to proper nutrition. Vitamin B12 can't be absorbed without a good supply of acid. Lack of B12 can lead to not only leg neuropathy but the brain degeneration. Certain enzymes and chemicals are released into the gut only when the acid is at the right level. Stomach acid aids in the defence against food infections. GERD sufferers should write down everything they eat and recognize anything that desagrees. Also quit overeating, the stomch is only so big. If you watch TV you will see endless adverts for aids in digestion on which the eaters then are able to carry on eating the food which cauased the suffering in the first place. Smoking is another no no. Hiatal hernias are another cause and surgery can cure. Remember anacids seem to help at the time but can have long term repercussions.