Easing heartburn and GERD woes
HELEN noticed periodic heartburn during her late 30s. At 45, the symptoms became more frequent and intense, with new ones added: discomfort after eating, gas and regurgitating acid into her throat during sleep.
She then experienced chronic heartburn or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). She was put on an acid-blocking drug, but could never get off them without symptoms returning in full force.
Food travels down a muscular tube called the oesophagus, which has two valves. In some people, the lower valve becomes weakened or damaged, causing acid reflux – stomach acid seeping into the oesophagus.
Stomach acid pH is close to battery acid and can cause damage and pain when it reaches the oesophagus, and this is heartburn.
The other symptoms of acid reflux include a sour-tasting fluid in the back of the throat, difficulty in swallowing, or a feeling that food is stuck in the chest or throat.
Some patients may even experience a chronic cough or breathlessness, which is triggered by the acid reflux.
Over time, GERD may occur, followed by difficulty in swallowing or breathlessness. This can cause chronic inflammation and lead to ulcers.
Proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) or acid blockers used for upper gastrointestinal disorders like GERD, dyspepsia and peptic ulcer disease work by reducing acid production, giving the digestive tract lining a chance to heal.
Current guidelines recommend PPIs be used for four to six weeks, after which it should be withdrawn or lessened to less-potent therapy
In practice, long-term and lifetime use is more the norm. This has led to these drugs’ potential to cause adverse effects and longterm harm due to their profound acid suppression actions
Without sufficient acid, food stays in the stomach for longer, unable to breakdown.
The body’s natural digestive and defence mechanisms become compromised, with PPI patients having increased risk of gastrointestinal tract and lung infections like pneumonia, bone fractures and troubled digestion.
Advanced research in natural therapies for gastrointestinal disorders now allows heartburn or GERD patients to consider alternatives.
The conifer green needle complex known as Bioeffective A is the result of an extensive 80-year botanical research programme.
Clinical studies found patients treated with Bioeffective A experienced a 92% improvement in GERD, gastritis, gas and bowel disorders.
Bioeffective A has been shown to help strengthen damaged or weakened oesophageal valves, impart anti-inflammatory benefits to the stomach lining and support normalisation of digestive juices in the stomach.
As a start, the recommended dose for acid reflux patients is 320mg three times a day, with each dose taken 30 minutes before meals. Besides taking smaller meals, Helen started on Bioeffective A and over the weeks, she noticed better tolerance to food without regurgitation symptoms occurring frequently.
This article is brought to you by the Nuvaceuticals Division of Nuvanta Sdn Bhd.
Talley NJ; American Gastroenterological Association. American Gastroenterological Association medical position statement: evaluation of dyspepsia. Gastroenterology. 2005;129(5):1753–1755
Joel J. Heidelbaugh, Andrea H. Kim, Robert Chang, and Paul C. Walker. Overutilization of proton-pump inhibitors: what the clinician needs to know. Therap Adv Gastroenterol. Jul 2012; 5(4): 219–232
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Stomach acid seeping into the oesophagus can cause damage and pain - this is known as heartburn.