Heartburn and acid reflux on a regular basis are a sure sign that your body is out of balance. We can use functional medicine to determine which one of the three body systems is experiencing dysfunction.
The Hormonal System:
Insufficient stomach acid production leads to undigested protein sitting in the stomach. This undigested protein putrifies, or rots, and releases organic acids that contribute to heartburn. Taking antacids does reduce the burning experiences from the rotting proteins and relieves symptoms but does little to address the underlying problem. Antacids are currently the number one selling medication in the United States. Evaluating and correcting stress hormones through diet, lifestyle changes, stress management and supplement programs can restore normal stomach acid production.
The Digestive System:
In addition to stomach acidity, gluten and cow’s milk dairy sensitivities can trigger heartburn. Furthermore, overeating, lying down after large meals, and emotional stress can all lead to an improper function of the valve between the stomach and esophagus. Incomplete closing of that valve will lead to the symptoms of heartburn as the contents of the stomach come in contact with the delicate tissue of the esophagus. A common bacterial infection of the stomach called helicobacter pylori destroys the parietal cells in the stomach lining that produce hydrochloric acid. Without sufficient stomach acid we won’t properly digest protein. Bacteria and parasites that come into the stomach from the foods we eat are also destroyed by the proper acidity of the stomach.
The Detoxification System:
Improper protein digestion leads to protein putrefaction. This undigested protein leads to the release of 33 known carcinogenic compounds into the bloodstream. These toxic compounds then need to be eliminated from the body, putting a large burden on the liver.
To read about the danger of using antacids check out my article by clicking here.