Health And Beauty -
What Your Stomach is Really Saying!

Heartburn!

Acid Reflux!

We've heard it at least a hundred, if not a thousand, times whenever we experience discomfort within hours of eating a meal!

What if I told you that what you're experiencing isn't either one of those?

What if I told you that there a stomach condition that is often overlooked?

What is it?

Hypochlorhydria or too little stomach acid.

If youíre having symptoms such as acid reflux, heartburn, burping, gas, bloating, or nausea after eating, then itís very likely that you have a stomach acid issue.
People diagnosed with gastrointestinal issues, especially inflammatory bowel diseases, Celiac Disease or IBS, are at a higher risk of having stomach acid problems. If youíve made several diet and lifestyle changes and youíre still not seeing the results you want, low stomach acid might be holding you back.

How hypochlorhydria hurts you:
Proper levels of stomach acid are needed to adequately absorb many nutrients including minerals (iron, copper, zinc and calcium), vitamin B12, folic acid and proteins.
Stomach acid is also a crucial part of the immune system. The acid barrier of the stomach during normal states of health easily and quickly kills bacteria and other bugs that enter the body. It also prevents bacteria in the intestines from migrating up and colonizing the stomach.
Appropriate stomach acid levels are crucial for our immune system and for adequate nutrient status, both of which support total health.

Three most common patterns of hypochlorhydria:

You Donít Feel Good When You Eat Meat - You need more stomach acid to properly break down the protein structures. And without it, red, white or any kind of meat will probably make you feel worse than when you eat other types of foods that contain less protein.

You Experience Frequent Acid Reflux After Eating - Insufficient stomach acid leads to a host of conditions that encourage the increase in intra-abdominal pressure (IAP). When IAP increases it pushes against the lower esophagealsphincter (LES). When the LES opens because of the pressure and even a microscopic amount of acid touches the inside of your esophagus it can produce large amounts of pain and burning. This is because the esophagus is not protected like the stomach from high acid levels.

You Burp, Fart, or Get Bloated After Eating - The likely situation is the food you ate is being fermented by bacteria and the byproduct of their feast is gas. If your acid levels are low enough and bacteria are surviving the stomach, most people will get repeated burps after eating. Sometimes, you might even burp several hours after eating and taste ruminates of your meal. This is a strong indicator that the food is still in your stomach when it should be in your small intestine. The pH levels arenít low enough to begin dumping the food into the intestines.

Bloating and farting following a meal could be explained by several problems. One of which is bacterial overgrowth in the stomach or upper small intestine. Lower acid levels would contribute to this by allowing these bacteria to live in the stomach or upper intestine. There also could be a slowing of the speed of digestion affording the bacteria longer access to the food.

There are other causes of Acid Reflux other than that which is described above, so let's take a look at those as well.
One common cause of acid reflux disease is a stomach abnormality called a hiatal hernia. This occurs when the upper part of the stomach and LES move above the diaphragm, a muscle that separates your stomach from your chest. Normally, the diaphragm helps keep acid in our stomach. But if you have a hiatal hernia, acid can move up into your esophagus and cause symptoms of acid reflux disease.

Other causes are:
Eating large meals or lying down right after a meal
Being overweight or obese
Eating a heavy meal and lying on your back or bending over at the waist
Snacking close to bedtime
Eating certain foods, such as citrus, tomato, chocolate, mint, garlic, onions, or spicy or fatty foods
Drinking certain beverages, such as alcohol, carbonated drinks, coffee, or tea
Smoking
Being pregnant
Taking aspirin, ibuprofen, certain muscle relaxers, or blood pressure medications

Heartburn is actually a symptom of GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), and is caused by acid refluxing back into the esophagus.

One of the most effective ways to treat acid reflux disease is to avoid the foods and beverages that trigger symptoms.
Here are other steps you can take:
Eat smaller meals more frequently throughout the day.
Quit smoking.
Put blocks under the head of your bed to raise it at least 4 inches to 6 inches.
Don't eat at least 2 to 3 hours before lying down.
Try sleeping in a chair for daytime naps.
Don't wear tight clothes or tight belts.
If you're overweight or obese, take steps to lose weight with exercise and diet changes.
Also, ask your doctor whether any medication could be triggering your heartburn or other symptoms of acid reflux disease.

If you experience any of the symptoms listed above, don't ignore them! Go see your doctor for a full comprehensive Gastrointestinal examination, so that you may receive the proper treatment and calm your stomach!

You can read more about each of these conditions below!

Sources:
Hypochlorhydria
Acid Reflux
Heartburn


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