Acid Reflux Remedies
About 44% of the adult population in the United States suffers from acid reflux disease. So many acid reflux remedies are advertised nowadays that the selection can become overwhelming and confusing. However, research into the topic can guide you to a sensible choice. If you are looking to reduce your acid reflux symptoms naturally, the Heartburn No More downloadable course features several methods for reducing your symptoms. Developed by nutritionist Jeff Martin, a former sufferer of GERD, this is a holistic 5-step approach based on 11 years of research. This scientific approach eliminates some of main symptoms in two days and many report no symptoms day-to-day in as little as eight weeks.
Only 5% of acid reflux sufferers achieve a full cure. The remaining 95% either buy into the conventional wisdom that the condition is incurable or take a one-dimensional approach to treatment. Some take various drugs to control the symptoms, suffer through the side effects, and relapse whenever they quit taking the drugs. Others try a natural approach that may work for a while. The one thing most people fail to do is to tackle the underlying causes of the condition in a holistic fashion.
Symptoms and complications of acid reflux
As anyone who suffers from acid reflux knows all too well, the symptoms can be highly unpleasant. Heartburn causes chest pain that can mimic a heart attack, the stomach feels bloated and painful, there is phlegm in the throat, and both burping and flatulence are present. It is hard to sleep, and sufferers often experience depression and a chronic lack of energy. Allergies and yeast infections are common.
About 40% of people suffering from acid reflux fail to treat it. If the condition is left untreated, the regurgitated acid can dissolve tooth enamel, resulting in decay. More importantly, it can erode the lining of the esophagus, leaving scars that can eventually cause cancer. Part of the problem is that many people do not want to take the drugs that are as commonly touted as the only acid reflux remedies.
The pharmaceutical industry reaps billions of dollars each year from over-the-counter acid reflux remedies that can actually damage the health of people who take them, leading to conditions such as osteoporosis. Moreover, they provide only temporary relief and in the end, they make the condition worse. Drugs such as Prilosec, Prevacid or Nexium should be taken for only eight weeks at a time, because if they are taken long-term they will stimulate the stomach to produce even more acid. As soon as the drug is left off, symptoms return. Antacids such as Tums, Pepcid, Zantac, and Rolaids prevent the formation of the stomach acid that is necessary to digest food. A side effect is the growth of Candida or yeast, which causes even more acid reflex and heartburn.
For the relatively few people who understand the folly of buying into the drug companies’ propaganda, there are various natural acid reflux remedies available. For some relief of symptoms, a common tactic is to raise the head of the bed or pile up the pillows to sleep in a semi upright position. Another physical method of decreasing the symptoms is wearing loose clothing. In addition, it is a good idea to avoid eating too close to bedtime.
Many people seeking a natural remedy turn to traditional Chinese medicine such as acupuncture. Another somewhat similar approach is reflexology, which relies on applying pressure to specific parts of the body, especially the soles of the feet. No creams, lotions, or tools are used in the technique. Another approach involves aromatherapy, which can be from the use of soaps containing essential oils or can rely on the ingestion of small amounts of these oils. Each approach has its adherents, but most practitioners claim only relief from symptoms rather than a cure.
For further relief, some turn to dietary restrictions. Many acid reflux remedies rely on adjusting the diet in such a way that the acidity of the stomach is reduced. Coffee, alcohol, and chocolate can upset the pH balance in the body. Fatty foods such as fried chicken and hamburgers take a long time to digest and therefore add to the load on the stomach. Cheese, oily foods, and certain spices should also be avoided, although some spices, such as cayenne, can actually be helpful. Consulting with a nutritionist is always a good idea, or lists of foods to avoid and other foods that can be helpful can be found online. Unfortunately, although taking charge of one’s eating habits is always a good idea, it is at best a partial remedy, which may reduce the amount of acidity in the stomach but does not necessarily eliminate the reflux.
Many acid reflux sufferers go one-step further and undertake a specific diet. A well-balanced vegetarian or preferably vegan diet is helpful because meats can be fatty and harder to digest. Even dairy foods can exacerbate the problem because they tend to be fatty. Some people achieve short-term relief by a detox diet, and can enjoy a relatively long period of relief by following up with a high fiber, low salt diet with a low fat content. The anti-Candida diet is based on this model, with the addition of pro-biotic foods. The Wai diet takes a somewhat different approach and avoids all cooked foods while concentrating on several small meals of raw food throughout the day. The mucus-less diet, on the other hand, relies primarily on fruits and green vegetables, either raw or cooked.
With this variety of conflicting diets available, it can be difficult to choose the right regimen. Even after choosing a diet, however, problems arise. Probably the greatest problem with diets is that they are by nature hard to follow for long periods of time, especially during holidays and other celebrations. Although they can result in remission of symptoms for a while, acid reflux remedies that rely totally on diet are not a cure, and symptoms can easily return. Moreover, reducing stomach acid is in many ways inadvisable, because a certain amount of acid is necessary for the proper digestion of food.
Other natural acid reflux remedies involve a combination of herbal supplements. Among the herbs used to treat acid reflux are angelica root, fennel, catnip, chamomile and ginger root, which are often consumed in the form of teas. Bitter herbs such as gentian are also used, but these are generally taken in the form of pills. One of the main problems with herbs is that the combination needed to have an effect can be expensive. A bigger problem, however, is that while users report a reduction or even a temporary remission of symptoms, no permanent cure is achieved. So just like special diets, herbal remedies can help, but only to a certain extent.
Although all these acid reflux remedies are beneficial and each one may provide a fair amount of relief, they do not tackle the root cause of the problem. As a result, symptoms may recur at any time or may even occur to some degree throughout the treatment. In addition, as noted above, they may even overdo the reduction of stomach acid, causing further stress on the digestive system.
The best approach
Because acid reflux is a complex condition, the best way to tackle it is by a multifaceted approach, using a combination of diet, exercise, nutritional supplements and other strategies that can work together to effect a total acid reflux cures. People who take this approach find many benefits, including a dramatic improvement in other health issues that seem at first to be totally unrelated. They may feel younger, have improved vitality, and rediscover mental abilities that they thought were long gone. Their appearance is more youthful, with healthier skin and nails and even thicker hair. They may never again experience acid reflux. The program developed by Jeff Martin is a good example of a multifaceted treatment, which is better than the one-dimensional acid reflex remedies that are normally tried.