Heartburn and reflux symptoms are common enough for the pharmaceutical agencies to pour millions of dollars into this symptom-suppressing condition each year with the latest and greatest anti-acid medications. Contrary to what most are told, heartburn is usually from a lack of stomach hydrochloric acid (HCl), not too much. Under stress, HCl levels decrease in the body which leads to the maldigestion of food and nutrients. Digestion slows down and the food in the stomach actually begins to rot to some degree. This creates a very bad digestive environment, yet a very good medium for other [harmful] stomach acids, as well as a home for unhealthy bacteria to grow. This then leads to heartburn, reflux and even a hiatal hernia (where a small portion of the stomach slides upwards through the diaphragm into the esophageal hiatus), as well as many other digestive troubles. When the acid-altering medication is prescribed, relief is typically immediate but the long-term net result means trouble as the already lowered HCl production is further and further diminished. This can lead to ulcerations due to maldigestion and colonization of bacteria such as the familiar H. pylori, also well linked to stomach ulcers. Additionally, digestion further down the track is impaired as the body relies on HCl production to trigger digestive secretions in the pancreas, small intestine and gall bladder. Addressing food allergies, excessive carbohydrate intake, as well as other dietary and nutritional factors are important here in the resolution. Emotional stress and occasionally injuries can play a role as well, especially those to the diaphragm.
/ / / I get heartburn and/or acid reflux (GERD) and/or have been told I have a hiatal hernia