Diet, Acupuncture and Indigestion
At Vico Health, we see many patients with INDIGESTION & HEARTBURN. Many present with acid reflux and may be taking several antacids a day. Often it is low hydrochloric acid in the stomach that leads to the problem.
While the occasional use of antacids is fine, too many can lower the PH of the stomach and reduce digestion of proteins and absorption of important minerals. To remedy this complaint, we have great success combining acupuncture and some dietary change.
Acid reflux is also known as heartburn or acid indigestion.
It occurs when some of the acidic stomach contents go back up into the oesophagus.
Acid reflux creates a burning pain in the lower chest area, often after eating.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD/GORD) is acid reflux that occurs more than twice a week.
GERD/GORD is very common in Western populations.
Stress, carrying extra weight and smoking all increase reflux.
Non-ulcer dyspepsia is a medical term often used to label indigestion and/or heartburn that is not related to an ulcer.
In many cases, simply eliminating or reducing the causative foods and beverages is all that is necessary to relieve acid reflux. These foods can differ from person to person but research suggests the following:
Reduce or Avoid:
Reduce your intake of coffee, soda, black tea, alcohol and sugar. Caffeinated beverages boost acid in the stomach and alcohol can relax the lower oesophageal sphincter, leading to reflux.
Pizza, rich meals and red meat.
Full fat cheese and rich, creamy foods.
Fried and very fatty foods.
Oily, spicy foods.
Concentrated juices, vinegar, tomatoes and citrus fruit, very acidic foods can trigger heartburn.
Reduce your intake of wheat based foods especially croissants, white bread and pre-packaged pies and cakes.
Increase whole grains like brown rice and quinoa. Try lentil, corn, buckwheat, millet or spelt based pastas, breads, and cereals. These are easier to digest than wheat. Many modern breads have highly processed wheat grains.
Include plenty of lightly cooked vegetables and fruits in your diet, which are easier on the digestive system.
Choose low fat meats like chicken and turkey (remove skin).
Include plenty of fresh fish in your diet, (low in fat and easy to digest).
Replace full fat cow’s milk with low fat or other milks like almond, rice or coconut. The low fat content will help.
Drink herbal teas, fennel and liquorice reduce acidity and chamomile soothes the gut.
Fresh root ginger is a carminative and very calming on the gut.
Aloe vera with digestive enzymes
Apple cider vinegar