Reflux – Indigestion
Reflux occurs when the “valve” at the top of the stomach doesn't close properly and stomach acid “leaks” into the esophagus. Doctors are concerned about the condition because over time as this acid backs up into the esophagus it erodes the lining. If this occurs over a long enough period of time it can lead to esophageal cancer. Armed with this knowledge the first approach of traditional medicine is to treat the symptom, reflux, instead of getting to the bottom of why the valve is leaking. Traditional medicine reasons that we must neutralize the acid so when it does “reflux” it won't do any more damage.
The FDA is now warning that long term use of these products is causing a few issues. First of all the are seeing an increase in bone fractures among people using these medications and secondly they are seeing an increase in vitamin B-12 deficiencies. To understand these dangers one must look at what the function of the stomach is and then ask critically, “If I decrease stomach acid over a long period of time what happens and why?”
Acid is measured on a scale of 0 to 14. This is called the pH scale. The lower the number on the scale the more acid the environment. Neutral pH is 7.0. Our blood stream for comparison must maintain a pH of 7.365 which is basically neutral.
Our stomach on the other-hand must maintain a pH of less than 2. This is like battery acid. The pH must be this low so a few different functions can occur.
First the stomach must be below 2.0 so it can break down minerals to allow for proper absorption.
Second It must be below 2 so the body can break down protiens int their usable amino acid components.
And third, it must be below a pH of 2.0 so it can produce the necessary cofactors that allow for efficient absorption of Vitamin B-12.
So right away we can identify 3 potential major problems related to nutrient deficiencies by “neutralizing” stomach acid.
So we can see why neutralizing the acid is bad so how do we stop the reflux?
We need to find out why the valve is leaking in the first and that in most cases is related to our diet.
In the American diet today most people drink some sort of carbonated beverage with our meal. The carbonation in the drink neutralizes the stomach acid, raising the pH above 2.0 and we already discussed what that does to absorption but it also creates an environment that allows for bacterial and yeast growth. Add to the carbonation the large amount of sugar and other carbs in our diet we now have the perfect conditions for fermentation. A byproduct of the fermentation process is gas bubbles which tends to force the valve to open and we get reflux. Now add to that the fact that we supersize everything and over eat this then forces the valve open as well.
Another problem with the american diet has been that doctors have told us salt is bad for us and they have had us cut our salt intake dramatically. Salt is necessary for the production of stomach acid. Also Harvard did a study on salt and cardiovascular disease and found there was NO correlation to salt intake and cardiovascular disease yet the doctors still have us cut our salt intake.
Even though we have lowered the acid level with the carbonation and cutting our salt intake the stomach pH is still below 7.0 so it is still acid enough to cause erosion and esophageal damage therefore traditional medicine, treating symptoms, lower the acid further to keep the reflux from causing damage instead of fixing the problem. This is leading to all kinds of mineral, amino acid, and vitamin deficiency problems. Traditional medicine isn't adding 1 and 1 together because they are so blindly entrenched into the mindset of disease and symptom management that they don't see the big picture!
So how do we fix it. We must increase stomach acid. We must get it back below 2.0. This will destroy the bad bacteria and yeast because they can't survive in that environment. To do this we must eliminate carbonated beverages; we must increase our salt intake to taste; we must increase our protein consumption to give the body the amino acids it needs; we must supplement with all 90 known essential nutrients and we must replenish the critical digestive enzymes that we have destroyed.
For a complete program designed by Dr Wallach to accomplish all of this contact me. If you “Give Doc 90 Days” you will begin to see dramatic changes in your health. I have looked at the research and compared it to what I learned in pharmacy school and have concluded (and have actually witnessed it myself) that the science behind this holistic approach to nutrition and wellness is sound and really works.