“I get reflux so I take Prilosec” Ahhhh!! WTF!? I get it the job of a medical doctor is to fix your symptoms. It just sucks that they do it with total disregard for the functioning of your entire body. So now, that stomach acid that your body makes is gone. Why do you want stomach acid? Because it is super-duper important for your entire digestive process. Let me paint you a picture of a healthy gut.
It has lots of stomach acid, pH of 1. It is kept in the stomach by an adequately operating esophageal sphincter. So you eat some questionable leftovers… no problem that pH of 1 will kill whatever little bugs come your way, because this acid is your immune systems first line of defense. Now your meal is being all churned up in the stomach mixing in that acid to properly break down proteins for absorption downstream. Your food that is now acidic chime, passes into the small intestine. The acidity stimulates release of pancreatic enzymes and bile from the gallbladder to further break down your food and prepare nutrients for absorption. As this blob passes further, it stimulates peristalsis which leads to a nice big poo! Awesome!
So take the acid out of the equation and your immune system is more susceptible to illness, you aren’t breaking down foods, which leaves you with nutrient deficiencies and your gut has no stimulation for movement and you are super constipated. Boo!
FYI healthy bowels move at least 1 x a day. That means really healthy people poop 2x a day. If you are going less than that it tells me that your waste is hanging out in your body instead of being eliminated. The longer it hangs out the longer your body is reabsorbing toxins that were meant for excretion. This is no Bueno!
Ok… I get it reflux is bad but stomach acid is good… what’s a person to do? Well instead of putting a Band-Aid on that symptom let’s figure out why you have it in the first place, eh?
Food intolerances… Remember those? Foods that piss off your body. Identify, remove, voila!
Or that sphincter I spoke of… If that thing is a floppy jalopy then it is not keeping acid in the stomach where it belongs. One reason is because there wasn’t enough acid in there to begin with to stimulate it to shut. Another common reason it goes floppy is due to darn ol’ adrenal fatigue. Among the many other duties of these super glands, they also set tone in the body. When they get tired things get floppy. Sphincters, ligaments, you name it. I know it seems crazy to think that stressed out adrenals could cause acid reflux but anything can cause anything. Remember our body is holistic and everything is related!
Apple cider vinegar to the rescue! This stuff is awesome. I could blog all day about it… maybe I will tomorrow. Just try it. 1 teaspoon with or without water before meals. It will improve that good ol’ digestion! If you can’t stand the stuff (I think it is delicious FYI). Then you can pop a pill. Try on a little betaine HCL with meals.
The point of the story is that we desperately need stomach acid! Your stomach is meant to house the stuff. If you are getting reflux, figure out why instead of eliminating the acid which is meant to be there.