GERD, or Gastroesophageal reflux disease, is a common digestive disorder that affects an estimated 35 percent of people chronically. GERD is typically characterized by burning feelings in the chest (heartburn), coughing, asthma-like symptoms, difficulty swallowing, burping up and even sleep apnea.
There are numerous causes and side effects of GERD, and not all of them are plainly obvious to the sufferer. A person may suffer for years, or even a lifetime, not knowing exactly what causes their troubles. Understandably, this can lead to severe depression and anxiety if it is bad enough.
This is most likely the number one cause of GERD, affecting supposedly 5 million Americans, though some think that the numbers are much higher. Hiatal hernia is not normally accepted by the modern medical industry, so attempting a diagnosis may prove fruitless. This condition is caused when the stomach protrudes up through the hiatus (the opening in the diaphragm). This is not a natural condition for the stomach. It prevents the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) from closing properly, allowing food and acid to back up into the stomach.
In severe cases, the stomach may become twisted or strangulated, cutting off blood flow and leading to the death of tissues and causing extreme pain in the chest, shortness of breath, nausea and perhaps dry heaving, giving it its name of “false heart attack”. This is usually treated by emergency surgery, but such surgery has a very poor success rate. The end results usually only cause more problems.
Stress and Emotions
It is no big secret that stress and emotional upset affect your digestion. Negative emotions slow it down and reduce acid production in the stomach, allowing food to essentially sit there and rot. If you have unresolved emotional problems, it is recommended to seek counseling so that they don’t continue to affect your health.
Not only does alcohol leech nutrients from your body, but it also contributes greatly to acid reflux. Alcohol relaxes the lower esophageal sphincter while slowing down your digestion. If you do drink, do it on an empty stomach, and only in small amounts.
Most people who suffer from GERD realize that foods like raw peppers, onions and undercooked potatoes and eggplant cause them trouble. However, one things that isn’t commonly accepted even by government health sources is that sugar causes acid reflux. Refined sugars contain no fiber, protein or fat, so there is nothing to buffer sugars when copious amounts of stomach acid are released to deal with them, leading to acid reflux.
These drugs are meant to be taken for only about 2 weeks at a time to allow ulcers to heal, and completely shut off acid production to your stomach. If the stomach isn’t able to produce acid, food doesn’t get digested. Not only do you suffer from malnutrition, but the food sits in the stomach and rots, and still causes reflux not related to excess acid.
GERD is a normal complaint from pregnant women. When the baby gets big enough to smoosh your stomach upwards, all of the food and stomach acid go with it.
For more information on the pathophysiology of GERD please visit Reflux Remedy at www.refluxremedy.com today!