PDA

View Full Version : Digestive Problems--lifestyle changes



SaintLouieWoman
07-30-2011, 10:29 AM
Q: What are my options for treating acid reflux disease? I don't like taking pills, so I'm hoping to avoid medication. What do you suggest?

Alex, California


http://images.agoramedia.com/everydayhealth/gcms/expert_mark_babyatsky_sq.jpg A: The most effective treatments for severe and symptomatic gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD (http://www.everydayhealth.com/gerd/understanding.aspx)) include medications (pills or capsules) that block acid, such as proton pump inhibitors and histamine-2 receptor blockers, and a type of laparoscopic surgery called a Nissen fundoplication (http://www.everydayhealth.com/gerd/treating-gerd/surgical-options-for-reflux.aspx). However, GERD can also be treated without pills or surgery by using a combination of nutritional and lifestyle measures and over-the-counter liquid antacids. For example, eating smaller meals more frequently and skipping food for two hours before bedtime reduces the amount of acid produced by the stomach. Avoiding fatty foods, alcohol, caffeine, and peppermint can also improve GERD symptoms. Other lifestyle changes you can try include losing weight, avoiding tight-fitting clothing, and using a surgical wedge or wooden boards to raise the head of your bed so gravity can help minimize GERD during sleep. Liquid antacids that help GERD symptoms include magnesium or aluminum products such as Maalox, Mylanta, and Gaviscon.



Last Updated: 05/12/2008
Digestive health expert Mark Babyatsky (http://www.everydayhealth.com/about_babyatsky.aspx) answers your frequently asked questions on digestive health symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, medications, management, and resources. Dr. Babyatsky is a gastroenterologist, professor of medicine, and chairman of the Samuel L. Bronfman Department of Medicine at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York.

fettpett
07-30-2011, 12:21 PM
no mention of changing ones diet? how dumb

SaintLouieWoman
07-31-2011, 12:16 AM
no mention of changing ones diet? how dumb

He did say "nutritional and lifestyle" changes. This was just a brief answer to someone's question.

I've found that eliminating anything caffeinated or carbonated helps a lot. Ditto not eating before bedtime.

fettpett
07-31-2011, 08:58 AM
He did say "nutritional and lifestyle" changes. This was just a brief answer to someone's question.

I've found that eliminating anything caffeinated or carbonated helps a lot. Ditto not eating before bedtime.

yeah, i saw that, but all he would have had to say is cut out a lot of fried and processed foods and go with a more whole food diet. I know when I get heart burn it's largely do to those 2 factors.

Zafod
07-31-2011, 09:13 AM
I am the opposit on that I get heart burn when I eat whole grains, and a low fat meal.

fettpett
07-31-2011, 09:26 AM
I am the opposit on that I get heart burn when I eat whole grains, and a low fat meal.

well I said whole Foods, not just grains, it's about listening to your body and knowing what foods messes with you, of course drinking more water helps too

SaintLouieWoman
07-31-2011, 09:30 AM
Heartburn at its extreme is GERD, gastric reflux disease. It's due to so many things, including maximum stress. I was in a very competitive sales field for many years. Compound that with dealing with the federal government sales and all the bureaucracy, sales managers constantly shifting quotas, and it was a recipe for disaster healthwise. I'm the prilosec/prevacid/ you name it queen.

What was started way back didn't suddenly stop with the move to the land of palm trees and beaches. Stress from health problems added to it.

It's weird, but I think the things that we really enjoy the most can hurt us. I love tomatoes (love the home grown ones down here), dark chocolate, and enjoy my once daily diet coke. Every time I think that I'm getting better, I will gradually add one of those things back to the diet and then the burn starts. :mad:

The docs even told me to elevate the bed. I put big wood blocks under the front legs of the bed frame. The only thing that happened was I kept slipping to the bottom of the bed.

It's not something to mess with, can lead to Barrett's esophagus and ultimately to esophageal cancer. Having the dread endocopy (it's really not that bad) along with the colonoscopy (hate that prep) Tuesday. I'm hopkng that I was misdiagnosed on the Barrett's years ago. We will see.

Regular old heartburn I think is triggered for many by fried and processed foods. The problem with me is I never ate them.

fettpett
07-31-2011, 10:24 AM
watching your diet and not eating things that do give you heartburn is a start. My dad has a hiatal hernia that causes his GERD's and he can't eat peppers and tomatoes.

Stress is a HUGE factor because when you are stressed your body is in the sympathetic nervous system (that fight or flight mode) which shuts down your digestive system. Your body can not distinguish the difference between having a guy pointing a gun at you and dealing with a high stress job. You have to get into the parasympathetic nervous system and fastest way to do that is deep breathing exercises, but anything that brings your stress levels down will switch it.

Calypso Jones
07-31-2011, 10:26 AM
Don't eat carbs like breads. possibly sugar. Use rice and veggies rather than flour carbs.

Eat a couple slices of apple particularly before bed.

Prilosec is extremely helpful.

I only have occasional bouts of heart burn when i get stupid with carbs.

SaintLouieWoman
07-31-2011, 10:46 AM
Don't eat carbs like breads. possibly sugar. Use rice and veggies rather than flour carbs.

Eat a couple slices of apple particularly before bed.

Prilosec is extremely helpful.

I only have occasional bouts of heart burn when i get stupid with carbs.
Good point on the carbs. That usually isn't mentioned. I haven't been doing carbs for some time, as the doc suggested I try the South Beach Diet, no potatoes, no bread, no sugars. The weird thing is it's actually working as they said it would. Besides the weight loss, my sugar cravings are gone. SR ate a whole pie when some guests cancelled at the last minute. :eek: I wasn't even tempted, but he shouldn't have eaten it (but he took a week so he didn't gorge on it). He's way more even keeled and doesn't get the heartburn.

Calypso Jones
07-31-2011, 05:38 PM
I have a friend. YOUNG, 62 years old and she already has a pacemaker. Has problems with carb and GERD. She takes a Chromium Picolinate or Chromium 200mgs a day..1 tab and this seems to level her blood sugar and less cravings for carbs. Seems to work.