Updated: Nov 26, 2020
If so, stop using anti-acid reflux medications as you may be suffering from Gastro-oesophageal Reflux Disease (GORD).
Gastro-oesophageal Reflux Disease is a serious form of acid reflux and the most common digestive disorder on the rise. An estimate of 95% of patients diagnosed with GORD are prescribed medications (mainly Protein Pump Inhibitor) which, long term exacerbates the symptoms.
Symptoms associated with GERD:
· Heart burn
· Difficulty swallowing
· feeling or being sick
· persistent cough, which may be worse at night
· chest pain
· tooth decay and gum disease
· laryngitis (inflammation of the larynx) which causes throat pain and hoarseness
· bad breath
· bloating and belching
GORD is underestimated and largely undiagnosed due to the availability of antacids over the counter. Hence, large population turn to self-medication without repotting the symptoms to their doctors.
However, for a very long time GORD has been misunderstood mainly due to the public advertisings of over the counter medications. Excess stomach acidity isn’t the cause but the dysfunction of the muscular sphincter valve. This valve is the middle point between the stomach and Lower End of the oesophagus (LES).
Acid reflux is caused by gastric bloating from pressure pushing stomach contents such as acid to the LES and into the oesophagus. However, oesophagus has no coating to protect itself from acid like stomach does.
Acid reflux occurs when pressure causes gastric distention (stomach bloating) that pushes the stomach contents, including acid, through the LES into the oesophagus.
Up until fairly recently heartburn wasn’t taken too seriously. It’s primarily been the butt of bad jokes about Grandma’s cooking. But we now know that heartburn and GERD can have serious and even life-threatening complications, including scarring, constriction, ulceration, and ultimately, cancer of the esophagus.
Recent studies also show that the damage from poor stomach function and GERD not only extends upward to the sensitive esophageal lining, but also downward through the digestive tract, contributing to Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and other gastrointestinal problems. IBS is now the second-leading cause of missed work, behind only the common cold.
any amount of acid in the esophagus is going to cause problems. That’s because its delicate lining isn’t protected against acid like the stomach lining is. You don’t have to have excess acid in your stomach to have heartburn.
scientific literature could tell you that heartburn and GERD are not considered to be diseases of excess stomach acid.
Instead, the prevailing scientific theory is that GERD is caused by a dysfunction of the muscular valve (sphincter) that separates the lower end of the esophagus and the stomach. This is known as the lower esophageal valve, or LES. The LES normally opens wide to permit swallowed food and liquids to pass easily into the stomach. Except for belching, this is the only time the LES should open.
If the LES is working properly, it doesn’t matter how much acid we have in our stomachs. It’s not going to make it back up into the esophagus. But if the LES is malfunctioning, as it is in GERD, acid from the stomach gets back into the esophagus and damages its delicate lining.
Acid reflux occurs when pressure causes gastric distention (stomach bloating) that pushes the stomach contents, including acid, through the LES into the esophagus. According to current thought, factors contributing to this include overeating, obesity, bending over after eating, lying down after eating, and consuming spicy or fatty foods.
1. Low Stomach Acid Causes Bacterial Overgrowth
As I explain in the next article, one of the chief roles of stomach acid is to inhibit bacterial overgrowth. At a pH of 3 or less (the normal pH of the stomach), most bacteria can’t survive for more than 15 minutes. But when stomach acid is insufficient and the pH of the stomach rises above 5, bacteria begin to thrive. The gastrin knockout mouse, which is incapable of producing stomach acid, suffers from bacterial overgrowth—as well as inflammation, damage and precancerous polyps in its intestines.
2. Low Stomach Acid Causes Maldigestion of Carbohydrates
Stomach acid (HCL) supports the digestion and absorption of carbohydrates by stimulating the release of pancreatic enzymes into the small intestine. If the pH of the stomach is too high (due to insufficient stomach acid), the pancreatic enzymes will not be secreted and the carbohydrates will not be broken down properly.
Digestive enzyme supplements can replace the natural enzymes your body is not producing due to a lack of stomach acid. Without the appropriate amount of stomach acid, your pancreas does not receive the signal to secrete required digestive enzymes. Your supplement should have proteases to breakdown protein, lipases for fats, and amylases for carbohydrates.
Symptoms associated with low HCL:
· Diarrhea or constipation
· Gas buildup with bloating, belching, and flatulence
· Brittle or weak nails
· Chronic fatigue
· Hair loss (women)
· Yeast infections
· Dry skin
· Rectal itching
· Food sensitivity
· Stools with undigested food
· Iron deficiency
· Autoimmune diseases
· Kidney problems