Indigestion Vs Heartburn
Some people who suffer from heartburn say to others that they are suffering from a case of indigestion. Although they have similar triggers, and even the treatment may often be the same, indigestion is not the same thing as heartburn. Indigestion is the condition, whereas heartburn can be regarded as a symptom of indigestion. No matter how they are categorized, both heartburn and indigestion need help.
My patients constantly complain to me about indigestion. They experience heartburn, they read about GERD and Reflux and they immediately think that they need to take an over-the- counter medicine from their local drug store to relieve their discomfort. I have found that there are several things they can consider to help indigestion and heartburn before resorting to doing that.
Firstly, let me say that for those people who are already on prescription medication they can still start to improve their diets as well as add in nutritional supplementation even while taking medication for GERD or Indigestion. Its important to remember that nutritional supplements don’t conflict. They are concentrated forms of foods that are 100% natural that don’t have any toxic side effects.
Often my patients are able to stop taking their medications when they no longer have a need for them. Be aware that often symptoms of reflux are actually as a result of being on several different prescription medications for a good amount of time. This happens when the drugs land up causing congestion in the liver. So, in these cases, improving the liver function as well as daily digestive function can turn their conditions around. I often suggest the use of Berberis and Seravita’s O’leave to support liver function. Aloe Complete’s Whole Leaf Concentrate is another wonderful supplement that eases digestive function. Just taking a couple of ounces per day can make the world of difference.
Of course, their choice of what foods to eat is a primary consideration that most people don’t want to address. However, when they do, there is instant reduction of symptoms. I recommend avoiding foods that are spicy, greasy, and fried. Then also stay away from alcohol, dairy,
all refined sugars, chocolate, coffee, caffeine, tomato, and citrus foods. Sometimes, its necessary to take grains out of the diet as well.
Another important issue relates to overeating. This will often cause symptoms. Things to remembers are to chew food well before swallowing, only drink small amounts of liquids during meals, if at all. It’s far better to drink larger amounts of water and beverages in between meals.
Of course, there’s a reminder to keep away from junk foods and concentrate on eating nutritious meeals filled with high quality proteins and vegetables on a daily basis. The best vegetables to select are the dark green, yellow and orange vegetables. Be sure to make certain your bowels are moving daily on a daily basis. Constipation will make all digestive problems worse including GERD, indigestion and heartburn. A-OK is the supplement I use the most for regulating bowel function if there is any constipation involved.
Probiotics are the supplements that I find to be the most beneficial addition to anyone’s regimen who complains about literally any digestive complaint, including GERD and indigestion. My favorites are Dr Ohhira’s Professional and Original Probiotic Formulas, VSL#3 both sachets and capsules, and Primal Defense Regular and Primal Defense Ultra that contain HSO’s ie homeostatic soil organisms. The suggested dosage varies from person to person. It’s not a supplement that can be overdosed, so taking therapeutic, loading doses to start with, particulary in the acute phase of dealing with indigestion and heartburn on a daily basis, is safe and often very effective.
Remember that poor digestion as well as dietary deficiencies may lead to a lack of useable calcium and magnesium in the body. These minerals play an important role. Men need them as much as women. Not only do they build strong bones and teeth and help in daily metabolism but are critical for muscle contraction, relaxation and healing. Minerals help the esophagus sphincter and other disgestive sphincters to function correctly.
These sphincters open and close the intestinal tract when it is carrying its contents to the proper area for digestion. B-Complex is another very important vitamin necessary for digestive support. My favorites supplements for these needs are Garden of Life’s Grow Bone Combination and their raw and organic B complex formula.
Another consideration is whether there is adequate secretion of digestive juices. These digestive juices come from the stomach, pancreas and liver. They break down the foods properly after eating. If they happen to be in short supply, intestinal gas occurs. A large number of people with indigestion need more of the proper digestive juices. For enzyme recommendations to be taken with meals, I suggest Omegazyme, Omegazye Ultra and Vegiezyme. The proteolytic enzymes I recommend between meals are UltraZyme and Wobenzym.
Some people have more Hydrochloric Acid (HCL) than they need. A small percentage of GERD sufferers are truly too acidic. I find that Acid Defense from Garden of Life helps these people a lot. Another supplement I like to use for these people Metagenic’s Metagest.
When all is said and done, for best long-term results I encourage improvement in daily diet as the primary consideration.