If you’ve been taking a PPI for longer than 2 weeks, STOP IT. (Actually don’t just STOP. You have to wean off them because your body is now dependent. Nobody told you that would happen, did they?)
The other factoid you probably weren’t told is that those magic little pills (mostly purple) are linked to fatal heart disease, fatal kidney disease and stomach cancer. And that death risk INCREASES the longer those drugs are used. (article below)
Doctors who recommend taking a pharmaceutical that won’t fix the problem and has dangerous side effects are irresponsible at best. Most of them don’t know how dangerous PPIs are because they don’t keep up with new discoveries and rely SOLELY on what the drug rep tells them. “It’s perfectly safe!!!” she says. “The box says don’t use more than 2 weeks but still safe for longer!” How did the drug rep determine this? Because the drug company she works for DID THE SAFETY TESTING ON THEIR OWN DRUG THEMSELVES. If no one dies during the two weeks they test, they deem the drug safe. Do you trust ANY company to do its own safety testing? Particularly when billions of dollars are at stake?
BTW, I do know that GERD and heartburn are not the exact same thing, but both can be addressed in the same manner.
Besides: GERD is not “Too Much” Stomach Acid
Did you know that the cause of acid reflux is NOT too much stomach acid (mostly hydrochloric acid or HCL)? It’s TOO LITTLE.
Acid reflux is actually a malfunction of your LES (lower esophageal sphincter): it’s supposed to close after food passes thru, keeping your stomach acid in your stomach. With too little stomach acid, the flap doesn’t get the signal to close… as your digestion proceeds (or rather does NOT proceed because too little HCL), stomach acid travels back up your throat.
Conventional medicine docs, rather than fix the problem of too little stomach acid (like the methods outlined below) so the flap closes, will give you a magic pill that stops your body from producing HCL so it won’t travel back up the throat.
Yes, it works in getting rid of acid reflux — the logic is clear: stop the acid, stop the burn. And truth be told, a LOT of people want that quick fix — I totally get that. But a pill does not fix the digestive issues that caused the reflux/heartburn plus these pills cause other, MUCH BIGGER PROBLEMS, like…
- increasing your risk of cardiovascular disease, chronic kidney disease and upper gastrointestinal cancer
- preventing you from getting the nutrients from your food (stomach acid is required)
- leaving you exposed to food-borne pathogens, parasites and bacteria (stomach acid kills this stuff)
👉 Fixing your GERD/heartburn is NOT complicated or expensive: a few simple diet changes, adding in a few quality supplements… SIMPLE. But not necessarily easy because there are a couple of lifestyle modifications required to conquer this. Totally depends on how much you want relief and how well you understand the long-term consequences of allowing it to continue.
Non-Pharma Fixes for GERD, Heartburn
GERD & Heartburn RELIEF
In an acute situation (you are currently suffering), here are a few things that can help asap:
- Baking soda in water: I put 1/4 tsp of baking soda in a short glass of water, stir and shoot. The relief is pretty immediate! If not, I’ll do it again. I’ve done 3x in a row in a really bad situation!!! Wonderful, happy belching ensues =/:-)
- Digestive enzymes: this is recommended in every section!!! I use these formulated by Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez and used in his cancer prevention/cure protocol. If you are suffering, take 4-5.
- Gentle exercise: a 10 minute walk is perfect, 10 minutes of rebounding, or 10 minutes on a Vibe (love my Vibe!!!). You want to get your muscles warm and active, this helps a sluggish digestion.
- If you lay down, you want to keep your upper body slightly elevated which helps gravity keep the acid in your stomach. This HELPS but does not always keep it down. If it’s bad, I usually have to sit UP.
- You can also raise the head of your bed 6-8″ for the same reason. Frankly, this never helped me but I have heard from others that it helped them. Worth a try until you are CURED!!!
- Do not lay on your right side. Your stomach is on your left side and slightly angled. If you lay on your right side, that acid comes right back up!
DO YOU HAVE PATHOGENS?
Before we go any further, you might consider a diagnostic tool to see exactly what’s going on in your gut. Sometimes GERD/Heartburn is caused by one or more pathogens and often reflux is the only symptom you will notice. I HIGHLY recommend the the GI Map test. This gives you 4 pages of info on what’s in your gut, including pathogens, bacteria (like H. pylori), parasites & fungus all of which could be getting in the way of your healing! If you want to know the details, text “GIMAP” to 859-550-3862 and I’ll get more info to you!
GERD & Heartburn PREVENTION
Here’s how to keep reflux at bay until you are CURED.
- STIMULATE YOUR HCL PRODUCTION:
- Take 1 tsp to 1 tbsp of ACV (apple cider vinegar) before meals. You can shoot it back “neat”, or mix with a little water and shoot. This wakes up your stomach and helps get the HCL going. There is no hard science on this but there are literally MILLIONS of people who swear by it. I do it and it does help. You want a brand with the mother: Bragg’s is reliable and available in every grocery store.
- If you can’t stomach ACV, try bitters. I have used this brand, they are wonderful. Since I can do ACV, I don’t bother with bitters.
- You can try an HCL supplement but it burned my stomach and the above 2 suggestions work as well.
- Digestive enzymes! I use these formulated by Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez and used in his cancer prevention/cure protocol. Take 3-5 before each meal.
- Use a good quality salt (we use this). Salt stimulates your digestion. Salt is essential to your physical health, we’d die without it.
- Eat clean. Glyphosate is a known cause of leaky gut, part of the perfect acid reflux storm. To avoid glyphosate, eat as much organic and non-GMO foods as possible. Eat pastured meats & eggs from animals supplemented with non-GMO feed.
- Make sure you get enough fiber. If you choose to supplement with fiber, start SLOW and work your way up. I use this fiber which is mostly glucomannon, one of the all-around best fibers you can take. I don’t use it everyday now that my GERD is managed, maybe once a week.
- Take a GOOD probiotic to support healthy gut bacteria. I take this which is a probiotic (installs the good bacteria), prebiotic (feeds the good bacteria) and digestive enzymes (helps you get the nutrients out of your food) all in one. And it tastes good 🙂
- Fermented foods CAN be helpful but not guaranteed. You have to see what works for you! Yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir, kombuch — the best fermented foods are home made. Store bought, unless it says made with live cultures, are often made with vinegar which is a short cut to fermentation. It may not have a single live bacteria in it… it just tastes like it might.
- Cut sugar way back if not out. Sugar does not help digestion and messes with blood sugar which messes with insulin and cortisol (stress hormone). If you have any belly fat, you have insulin resistance and likely blood sugar dysregulation. Berberine is an excellent supplement to help with blood sugar and cravings. You can take 3 a day to start, cut back as you see fit. (I’m still taking 2-3 per day.) I’ll be writing an info post on Berberine and will link it here — I’m a huge fan!
- Same for commercial sweeteners: most are unhealthy chemical compositions and still mess with blood sugar. Stevia & xylitol do not mess with blood sugar for most of us so those are good choices. Xylitol CAN cause gastric distress (a polite way to say diarrhea) and it can also be lethal to dogs! I use almost exclusively stevia and stevia-sweetened products. This is the stevia I use from Amazon (comes in liquid also). You can usually find this in a local grocery store. Sweetleaf is the brand you want — beware all others!!!
- Cut grains from your diet, either out or way back. Even if you are not celiac or even grain-sensitive, grains are problematic when it comes to digestion. The book Wheat Belly is an excellent resource on the topic. Cut grains for 30 days, then reintroduce slowly, see what happens.
- Pasteurized dairy is “dead” food meaning it’s had all the beneficial enzymes and bacteria killed in the pasteurization process. These are the very nutrients that help you digest your food. Raw dairy should be ok, give it a fair trial and see how you do with it.
- Industrial oils are actually a dangerous food. Humans need good quality fats to help build and maintain healthy cells — industrial oils do not promote health, they are anti-nutrients! The best oils to use are avocado, organic coconut and/or a REALLY GOOD QUALITY olive oil. If you have access to ghee and clean lard, this is best for cooking and frying! Here’s how to make ghee, really simple.
- Stop eating 2-3 hours before bed so that you are fully digested when you lay down. This is one of the BEST practices I started that gave me the most relief!!!
Besides the above, here are…
Foods that tend to make reflux worse: alcohol, carbonated sugary drinks, energy drinks (usually full of chemicals), artificial sweeteners, fried foods, veg oils, spicy foods, processed foods. These almost all do it for me except spicy food (go figure, right?) My “avoid” list also includes cooked tomatoes and raw onion!
Foods that can help prevent acid reflux: try organic veggies (suggestions include leafy greens, squash, artichoke, asparagus, cucumbers — this is a very individual list, you have to see what works for you). ON the veggies, cooked is best to start to avoid those lectins and oxalates. We add leafy greens to our bone broth soup and it is wonderful. You drop in just as you serve so they are just lightly “cooked” — don’t actually cook them in the soup pot, it’s more of a garnish. Delicious! Bone broth is excellent, simple to make and very healing for the gut. Aloe vera gel is also very healing (I add this to my smoothies). Teas that help digest are parsley, ginger, peppermint, fennel.
GERD & Heartburn CURE
Here’s the cure. It includes ALL of the above which should be habits by now, yes? These are practices you’ll keep. Remember that you can get reflux again. Just like with weight loss: if you go back to your old way of eating, you’ll go back to your old way of looking and feeling. There ain’t no way around it.
The main idea is to promote healthy levels of HCL in your stomach so that you kill pathogens and digest your food with no reflux.
- Take 3-5 digestive enzymes 5-30 minutes before your meal. If you forget, take them after. I do my Digestion Plus in the am and take my digestive enzymes at each meal. Even when you feel that you are cured, it’s cheap insurance against stomach cancer!!!
- If you’ve been doing ACV before your meals, no need to stop. Again, cheap insurance.
- Eat clean, nutrient dense food
- Digestion starts in your mouth and your salivary glands secrete digestive juices. Think of a lemon: does your mouth water? Good! If not, get a lemon and practice with it: cut it and have a lick. You want your salivary glands fully operational.
- Chew. Chew until your food is mush or close to it. Even cottage cheese. This is WHY we have teeth.
- Eat slowly, putting down your fork at least every few bites.
- Don’t overeat at one sitting. You can always have more in an hour. When you have low stomach acid and you overwhelm your stomach with too much food… not a good combo.
That should do it! Take 30 days and implement the above, see how you feel. You should get at least SOME relief. If you don’t get significant relief, it’s time to seriously consider the GI Map!
At any rate, keep in touch. Text, call or email me with any questions and let me help guide you. My contact info is at the top of every page and I truly want feedback: what worked for you? More importantly, how would you like to proceed with your healing?
Which PPI are you taking?
omeprazole: Prilosec, Zegerid
dexlansoprazole: Dexilant, Kapidex
- GI Map test to discover gut pathogens preventing your healing!
- Digestive Enzymes https://amzn.to/2zjGSn1
- Berberine https://amzn.to/2JigQsU
- Stevia https://amzn.to/2xVWIZ2
- Vibration Plate https://amzn.to/3hp4RXe
- Bitters https://amzn.to/36e5RrD
- Salt https://amzn.to/2GGknR4
- Aloe Vera Gel https://amzn.to/2ElMQds (this is Lily of the Desert and you can get for the same price in a local health food store!)
- My probiotic — if you want to try this, let me know and I’ll help you get the best deal! Digestion Plus
- My favorite fiber supplement: Full Control (same: if you want to try, I can get you the best deal)
- Ghee: Here’s how to make ghee, really simple.
- The book Wheat Belly, excellent resource on grains & digestive health
- Wash U article: https://medicine.wustl.edu/news/popular-heartburn-drugs-linked-to-fatal-heart-disease-chronic-kidney-disease-stomach-cancer/
- Mercola on Acid Reflux & Too Little Acid: https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/04/25/news-flash-acid-reflux-caused-by-too-little-acid-not-too-much.aspx
- My video on Relief, Prevention, Cure for GERD: https://www.bitchute.com/video/SWg52peqv7L8/ (this video is a couple of years old — you’ll find updated into in the post you are reading!)
- More than you ever wanted to know about HCL: https://draxe.com/nutrition/hydrochloric-acid/