T Nation

Acid Reflux

My doctor told me I have acid reflux and should not eat anything for 4 hours before I go to bed. I try to spread out my eating over the day.

Normally I drink a shake of skim milk and whey protein right before bed and I wonder if I should stop this or if it would make much difference.

Of course I can experiment, but would be interested in how others modified their diet, timing of eating, etc to help with the acid reflux and still eat to keep/build mass and strength.

This is going to sound totally off the wall, but I tried something entirely different for my acid reflux and it worked for me. Your mileage may vary.

I theorized that the reason I had acid reflux is that the food in my stomach was sitting there far too long, and churning far too long because it wasn’t being digested properly. The problem was not the acid, the problem was the reflux.

Given this postulate, I took some of Poliquin’s advice and took small amounts (1 or 2 tablets) of betaine HCl to INCREASE stomach acid.

Sure enough, it worked. The food doesn’t sit there in the stomach and cause any reflux anymore for me.

[quote]yorik wrote:
This is going to sound totally off the wall, but I tried something entirely different for my acid reflux and it worked for me. Your mileage may vary.

I theorized that the reason I had acid reflux is that the food in my stomach was sitting there far too long, and churning far too long because it wasn’t being digested properly. The problem was not the acid, the problem was the reflux.

Given this postulate, I took some of Poliquin’s advice and took small amounts (1 or 2 tablets) of betaine HCl to INCREASE stomach acid.

Sure enough, it worked. The food doesn’t sit there in the stomach and cause any reflux anymore for me.[/quote]

Correct. My friend used to have acid reflux and has been taking apple cider vinegar for years. Recently I told him to try some high quality digestive enzymes, which has really helped him.
Acid helps digest the food. So it does make sense that when you don’t have enough stomach acid your stomach starts producing it’s own acid and thats why you get that burning feeling.

I don’t have any problems as far as acid reflux goes, but every now and then when I eat a lot of spicy foods it helps when I take some apple cider vinegar with mother before/after my meals. Works great for me.

I’m going to have to try this. I’m taking over-the-counter Prilosec to control my acid reflux with good results. But I’ve wondered if decreasing stomach acid results in incomplete digestion and absorption. Betaine HCL is certainly cheaper as well.

[quote]yorik wrote:
This is going to sound totally off the wall, but I tried something entirely different for my acid reflux and it worked for me. Your mileage may vary.

I theorized that the reason I had acid reflux is that the food in my stomach was sitting there far too long, and churning far too long because it wasn’t being digested properly. The problem was not the acid, the problem was the reflux.

Given this postulate, I took some of Poliquin’s advice and took small amounts (1 or 2 tablets) of betaine HCl to INCREASE stomach acid.

Sure enough, it worked. The food doesn’t sit there in the stomach and cause any reflux anymore for me.[/quote]

[quote]lctrc wrote:
I’m going to have to try this. I’m taking over-the-counter Prilosec to control my acid reflux with good results. But I’ve wondered if decreasing stomach acid results in incomplete digestion and absorption. Betaine HCL is certainly cheaper as well.
[/quote]

Here’s the thing and I know this is a radical departure from what a lot of Dr.s will tell you. Acid reflux is usually not caused by too much acid. In fact, if you do not have an ulcer, you might want to add HCL. In addition to that, mass bombard yourself with Propbiotics…Get a good one, not a cheapie. I like “Garden of Life” brand.
Also drink and eat lots of fermented foods. Often times, acid reflux is caused by your gut being over-run by bad bacteria because there is not enough good bacteria in the intestinal flora. There could be many causes of this…in my case, it was a series of antibiotics. Antibiotics kill the bad bacteria but they also end up killing the good organisms in your gut as well.

In any case, all of the above worked for me. First I went to a doctor who prescribed an anti-acid medication. That worked for a while but then I got the same problem again. This time I did research and came up with the above solution. Another thing that worked was eating Mastic in the morning.

In any case, check out this book and follow at least some of the remedies. They worked for me:

Good luck.

I must emphasize one thing. Please make sure you DONT have an ulcer before taking HCL. If you do have an ulcer, you dont want to
take HCL. Otherwise, you can start by taking a small portion of HCL and work up. Dont forget the other components that I recommended above.

[quote]entheogens wrote:
Often times, acid reflux is caused by your gut being over-run by bad bacteria because there is not enough good bacteria in the intestinal flora. There could be many causes of this…in my case, it was a series of antibiotics. Antibiotics kill the bad bacteria but they also end up killing the good organisms in your gut as well.[/quote]

I never do a treatment of antibiotics anymore without also going to the health food store and getting probiotics and anti-yeast supplements. I continue taking them for at least two weeks AFTER finishing the antibiotics.

Its been proven to be closer related to Elevated Insulin Levels.

I would suggest try going Low carb for five days and see if that helps.

[quote]entheogens wrote:

In any case, check out this book and follow at least some of the remedies. They worked for me:

Good luck.

[/quote]

You can also read “Why stomach acid is good for you”.

I just finished it and it reads very well.

Thanks for the ideas. I really never had heartburn problems, I had an occasional stabbing pain in my throat. After an exam by an ENT he sent me to a gastro specialist.

I had an upper GI endoscopy to obtain biopsies of the esophagus, which came back with a finding of Barrett’s Esophagus which seems to precede the development of a particular kind of cancer? esophageal adenocarcinoma. The doctor said the risk of developing adenocarcinoma is 30 to 125 times higher in people who have Barrett’s esophagus than in people who do not and is increasing increasing rapidly in white men.

Even though the risk is still pretty small I’m to get an upper GI scope annually and the doctor put me on prescription Prylosec. With this, I’m a bit leary to try any non-doctor approved solutions. Just interested in how people work their diet around acid reflux. Thanks

Purple Pill.

The obvious course of action is to adjust your diet through trial and error. My situation is a little too severe. I didn’t have any trigger foods to flame up my reflux. I went to the gastro doctor as well, they did that EDT test and hooked me up to the baby monitor machine and showed me where my heart "flaps " were misaligned so acid was escaping.

That was a while back so I’m sorry that I didn’t use alot of medical terminology. I hope your case is not as bas as mine because it sucks to lay down on the bench and feel like your drowning.

[quote]thighlord wrote:
entheogens wrote:

In any case, check out this book and follow at least some of the remedies. They worked for me:

Good luck.

You can also read “Why stomach acid is good for you”.

I just finished it and it reads very well.
[/quote]

Bravo! I read that book as well and it is a good one. That’s where I got the idea to try mastic. The mastic alone gave me almost IMMEDIATE results. The p

I’ve had GERD my whole life. I didn’t try anything for it until 10 years ago (I’m 40). I’ve now taken ranitidine, Prilosec and now I’m on Prevacid. I had an upper endoscopy last year and had 8 irregular spots removed (none cancerous).

I was diagnosed with an irregularity at the gastro-esophagel juction. Kinda scared to go off the meds now and my insurance may not cover an operation to try and repair the valve. Anyone similarly situated? I have not yet tried HCL supps. because of the diagnosis.

[quote]djfuer wrote:
I was diagnosed with an irregularity at the gastro-esophagel juction. Kinda scared to go off the meds now and my insurance may not cover an operation to try and repair the valve. Anyone similarly situated? I have not yet tried HCL supps. because of the diagnosis. [/quote]

I can understand your fear. However, know that not all physicians agree with the standard form of treatment. Read the books suggested above (they were written by Medical Doctors). Recognize there is a lot of pressure brought by the pharmaceutical industry to “encourage” doctors to use their drugs. I am not saying “believe me” but keep an open mind.

I also was on antacids prescribed by an MD. The first time through I thought it worked and that I was ok. When the acid reflux returned some time later, I decided that I needed to look at nutrition and alternative ideas. It was a good move on my part. I am free of this problem now.

I have to restate though, dont use HCL if you have an ulcer. Otherwise, you can give it a go. Also try some of the other stuff recommended in the above-mentioned books.