Health 101: Fighting acidity and reflux

Hi Lovelies,

I had been meaning to write this post for quite some time as I have combated with this illness so far 3 times in my life. It seems to be a common problem with a lot of people these days. It arrives slowly but then takes forever to leave. Today I am going to talk about things that lead to acidity and reflux as well as things that will help it. No this isn’t going to be like other posts where I am going to give you short term solutions or home made remedies, instead I am going to talk about lifestyle changes and breakthroughs that most people usually ignore and dont think will help. And ofcourse as always I will talk about some common misconceptions.

My first battle with acid reflux started when I was a teenager. I recall sleepless nights and becoming insomniac. I would get up and chew pieces of bread all night but the pain wont go away. This bout lasted me a good 7 months till I finally saw a doctor who hit the nail on the head. The acid and reflux wasn’t just because of my diet but it was also due to stress and anxiety! Ofcourse when we get sick we only worry more and more everyday. Which aggravates the issue further. So key point here for long time or on and off sufferers is to find ways to relax! Find activities and hobbies to make  part of your lifestyle that make you happy and help you forget about your problems for a bit. I have noticed dancing, exercise and music helps me tremendously. There is always meditation and yoga. Some people like to play video games etc!

But that wasn’t the break through the doctor found she not only gave me some OTC acid blocking pills to take for 6 weeks but she also put me on anti anxiety pill for a few days as needed and lo and behold my long standing problem of 7 months went away. The same OTC pills didn’t work on their own prior to trying the anti anxiety pills. Now I am not telling you to abuse those pills. I am just saying you can always find ways to calm yourself down the natural way.

The second bout came when my doctor put me on naproxen for my foot pain. Most people know NSAID (anti inflammatory medication) tear up your stomach linning. Well a week later I was in stomach agnoy again. That is when I discovered Apple sauce. It became a breakfast staple for me every morning. Well sometimes I ate them for lunch too. Anytime I felt bad I ate them. Lo and behold the problem went away in a few weeks.

And then it happened again earlier this year. On January 3rd 2014, I realized the problem raised its ugly head again. I was put back on the meds again, both OTC and anti anxiety. I avoided taking the anxiety meds and tried to relax on my own. I stopped eating spicy food. Cut out coffee chocolate , juices and tea! Anything with flavor? forget it! No fried food nothing delicious. The pain wont go away. 6 weeks later I see my doctor again. This doctor is amazing and very positive she thought I was too young to be put on more meds and asked me a key question: “how much water do you drink?” and I realized I actually dont drink water apart from when taking meds or a glass before bed. She was shocked and I was embarrassed. I was asked to drink 8 glasses a day for 2 weeks and come back if I am not better and stop eating so clean. She wanted me to have a balanced diet.

It was really hard to drink 8 glasses a day. I was feeling extremely full and pudgy all day. Thats when I realized reading somewhere long time ago that if your stomach becomes too alkaline (ph base) your stomach produces more acid. That is where the misconception comes in. You think you are having acidity and you eat better only to make your self alittle too alkaline in your stomach. I was like let me find some french fries and add them to my diet that day at lunch. Guess what? it was like magic the pain went down! I slowly reduced the amount of water to 6 glasses and started eating a more balanced diet. And bam the problem was resolved.

Now why am I telling you all this? So you can try this out for yourself:

1) Drink more water!

2)Drink water half an hour to 20 minutes before you eat, especially if you are planning to eat something spicy or greasy. Well even coffee or chocolate. Think of it as a cleanser. It goes into your stomach and gets rid of all the toxins. So once all the acid and bad stuff is gone your stomach can start healing and feel happy.

3)If you see symptoms coming on, increase your uptake of water and cut down on extremely spicy, acidic or caffeinated products for a bit.

4) Apple sauce, the all nautral kind is a good neutralizing base to be eaten first thing in the morning while you are still experiencing symptoms for a few days.

5)Definitely raise the head of your bed for as long as your symptoms persists. I am over my pain but I am still sleeping with several pillows just in case!

6)Do not eat and lay down! Imaging all the food and acid going up your esophagus you don’t want that!

7) From my personal experience working out on a full stomach or semi full stomach brings on my pain. So now I work atleast 2.5 or 3 hours after eating.

8)Eat at regular intervals, smalls and frequent meals till the symptoms are gone. Keeping your stomach empty will aggravate the issue.

9)Wear looser clothes! Especially things that dont sit on your waist because thats where your stomach and esophagus meet. Loose pants for men. Low rise pants or better yet dresses for women.

But the main cure is RELAXATION AND WATER! these two paired together with a balanced diet will knock the socks off your acidity and reflux!

Let me know if you try this out and if it helps. Also feel free to add to comments anything that has helped you get rid of your reflux and acidity.

 

 

5 thoughts on “Health 101: Fighting acidity and reflux

  1. Very interesting points – people don’t realize just how many physical symptoms and issues stress and anxiety cause and then the different things needed for acid and reflux caused by it in comparison to unhealthy foods and unhealthy acids (in contrast to healthy acid and alkaline). I’d never be able to drink that amount of water a day unless not eating, but I do agree that drinking it shortly before or after a meal can help rather than while eating. I find drinking whilst eating only helps if you’re eating a big meal (but of course you knew when you’re doing what you’re risking!) That said sometimes I find the stomach just needs time/space to get through everything in conjunction with the rest of the digestive system. There was a time in my life where I didn’t eat one day a week and wow it seriously helped.

    Great, thought provoking post!

    • Forgot to add dark, very dark chocolate is fantastic for digestion, a very different beast to dairy milk chocolate. It can clean out everything fast, very much like Black grapes!

      • Am glad you found the post useful. I had you in mind when writing it 🙂 I wanted to point out through this post that short term changes aren’t going to beat one’s problems as well as we look for extreme cures but sometimes cures can be as simple as cleansing your system.
        So question for you when you dint eat one day a week did you go on a full fledged 24 hour no food or water or were you drinking or eating only certain things?

      • It’s true – even if you cleanse your system fully as there are many natural foods that can do, it won’t help long term if the causes don’t change but it can ease up the pain in between. That said, the body gets used to it as well if you don’t see to the causes so aids like that become less effective until the issue is sorted. So many things to take into account, it certainly is a tough subject.

        I’ve never purposely gone without liquid as I dehydrate quickly, so I was drinking on those days usually fruit juice (not from concentrate). I find fruit and fruit juice or smoothies sustaining for my system and don’t need much else other than nuts/oils and a bit of veg in general but living in this polluted world means a lot more work and different properties constantly need replenishing or boosting for basic digestion even without issues. So I eat more than I used to and take more supplemental things like Green powders and herbal teas, fermented veg etc. If the digestion goes out of whack then it’s more stress on the other systems like the immune system. All downhill and easier to mess up than fix with modern lifestyles! Plus I kind of like cooking… :-S The digestion takes up so much of the body’s resources as it is, hence why so many people fall asleep after eating too much or heavy food (good point about sleep more upright – I’ve been doing that for my back for quite some time and it does help for digestion too). Hence is indigestion is stress based it’ll take even more energy/be more draining and put the body at more risk. Which then causes more stress, vicious cycle.

  2. I’ve recently been struggling with that issue myself. I had never had it before but it triggered after a really bad period of emotional stress and anxiety. It’s taken months for my stomach to go back to normal, I started eating clean and all that, while taking meds. The fact it takes long becomes so frustrating and it doesn’t help. I lost some weight, too much for my taste, and now I can’t seem to eat too much and I have better days than others. I hope this all goes away and it never comes back.

    Thanks for the tips and I may add eating yogurt helps a lot too. When anything else kicked my stomach yogurt didn’t.

    Hope you don’t get it back!

    xoxo
    Ronnie

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