• Natural Remedies for the Treatment of Acid Reflux and Ulcers

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    Acid Reflux or Heartburn is a painful burning feeling in your chest or throat.  So many people suffer from this and most reach for a pill to pop to help.  Find out why those medication or over the counter pills are doing more harm then good!  Most people could relief their heart burn with the ingredients in their kitchen! Read this article to find out some Natural Remedies for Acid Reflux and Ulcers.

    By Dr. Mercola

    Acid reflux is an extremely common health problem, affecting as many as 50 percent of Americans. Other terms used for this condition are gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) or peptic ulcer disease.

    The hallmark symptom of acid reflux is “heartburn”—a burning sensation behind your breastbone that sometimes travels up your throat. In some cases, this pain can be severe enough to be mistaken for a heart attack.

    Conventionally, acid reflux is thought to be caused by excessive amounts of acid in your stomach, which is why acid-blocking drugs are typically prescribed or recommended.

    This is a serious medical misconception that adversely affects hundreds of millions of people, as the problem usually results from having too little acid in your stomach.

    heart burnWhat Causes Heartburn?

    After food passes through your esophagus into your stomach, a muscular valve called the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) closes, preventing food or acid to move back up.

    Acid reflux occurs when the LES relaxes inappropriately, allowing acid from your stomach to flow (reflux) backward into your esophagus. But it's important to understand that acid reflux is not a disease caused by excessive acid production in your stomach; rather it's a symptom more commonly related to:

    • Hiatal hernia
    • Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection (H. pylori bacteria is thought to affect more than half of the world's population, and has been identified as a Group 1 carcinogen by the World Health Organization)

    While these two conditions are unrelated, many who have a hiatal hernia also have H. pylori, which cause a chronic low-level inflammation of your stomach lining that can result in an ulcer and associated symptoms. If you have a hiatal hernia, physical therapy on the area may work and many chiropractors are skilled in this adjustment.

    The hypothesis that H. pylori infection is responsible, or at least a major factor, for producing the symptoms of acid reflux stems from the work done by Dr. Barry Marshall, an Australian physician, during the early 1980s.

    Why Medications for Heartburn Can Do More Harm Than Good

    One of the most commonly prescribed drugs for heartburn and acid reflux are proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), which are very effective at blocking acid production in your stomach.

    While that may sound like an appropriate remedy, considering the fact that stomach acid is creeping up your esophagus, in most cases it's actually the worst approach possible, as a major part of the problem is typically related to your stomach producing too little stomach acid.

    There are over 16,000 articles in the medical literature showing that suppressing stomach acid does not address the problem. It only temporarily treats the symptoms.

    PPIs like Nexium, Prilosec, and Prevacid were originally designed to treat a very limited range of severe problems. According to Mitchell Katz, director of the San Francisco Department of Public Health, who wrote an editorial on this topic four years ago, proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are only warranted for the treatment of:

    • Bleeding ulcers
    • Zollinger-Ellison syndrome (a rare condition that causes your stomach to produce excess acid)
    • Severe acid reflux, where an endoscopy has confirmed that your esophagus is damaged

    According to Katz, “about 60 to 70 percent of people taking these drugs have mild heartburn and shouldn't be on them.” Part of the problem with PPIs is that when you suppress the amount of acid in your stomach, you decrease your body's ability to kill the helicobacter bacteria. So if your heartburn is caused by an H. pylori infection, it actually makes your condition worse and perpetuates the problem. Besides that, reducing acid in your stomach diminishes your primary defense mechanism for food-borne infections, which will increase your risk of food poisoning. PPI drugs can also cause potentially serious side effects, including pneumonia, bone loss, hip fractures, and infection with Clostridium difficile (a harmful intestinal bacteria).

    Your First Line of Treatment – Unprocessed Foods and Probiotics

    Ultimately, the answer to heartburn and acid indigestion is to restore your natural gastric balance and function. Eating large amounts of processed foods and sugars is a surefire way to exacerbate acid reflux as it will upset the bacterial balance in your stomach and intestine. Instead, you'll want to eat a lot of vegetables and other high-quality, ideally organic, unprocessed foods. Also, eliminate food triggers from your diet. Common culprits here include caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine products.

    Next, you need to make sure you're getting enough beneficial bacteria from your diet. This will help balance your bowel flora, which can help eliminate H. pylori bacteria naturally without resorting to antibiotics. It will also aid in proper digestion and assimilation of your food. Ideally, you'll want to get your probiotics from fermented foods. If you aren't eating fermented foods, you most likely need to supplement with a probiotic on a regular basis. Ideally, you'll want to include a variety of cultured foods and beverages in your diet, as each food will inoculate your gut with a variety of different microorganisms. Fermented foods you can easily make at home include:

    • Fermented vegetables
    • Chutneys
    • Cultured dairy, such as yoghurt, kefir, and sour cream
    • Fish, such as mackerel and Swedish gravlax

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    Read full article: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/04/28/acid-reflux-ulcer-treatment.aspx


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    One Response to “Natural Remedies for the Treatment of Acid Reflux and Ulcers”

    1. My husband had GERD and was taking Dexilant, but after a couple years he heart burn was coming back with a vengeance and he was also having bathroom issues. We finally found something that is 100% natural, no chemicals, non-GMO and no side effects that works for him! We now do not have to worry about the LONG list of side effects. I will be more then happy to share what he uses if you would like to PM me.