Welcome to the podcast Fibromyalgia Real Solutions with Amanda Love.

You are listening to episode19  -The Mystery of Acid Reflux And G.E.R.D.

By the way,  you can listen to this podcast wherever you are in the world and at any time that you wish. I always include show notes for those with “ brain fog” so you don’t have to take notes.

   I do believe that there is a lot of information both good and bad out there about fibromyalgia. As an educator who specializes in this area, I think it is my job to point out to you that beneficial information can be organized in a fashion that will reduce the symptoms of this malady. 

    My name is Amanda Elise Love and  I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia 9 years ago which influenced my decision to enter the field of nutrition and now I am a Registered Holistic Nutritionist who works with those who are suffering from fibromyalgia. 

Before we get started  I want to say that each podcast is to be informative but also to help you take some action steps that will improve your health.  Please try some of these suggestions and let me know if they have benefitted you. 

When I think of the word heartburn I imagine most people have experienced this symptom which is actually a sign of acid reflux, most of the time. 

  First, though, let me say that stomach acid  ( hydrochloric acid ) is very beneficial to our health. The acid is needed to digest our food and to kill harmful bacteria. It only becomes a problem if it flows the wrong direction outside the stomach. 

  So why does this occur? We know that the action of peristalsis by the esophagus is very strong. Even if you were upside down the body knows that the food should go down to the stomach and not up. 

  At the lower end of the esophagus where it meets the stomach, there is a sphincter or valve which opens for food to enter the stomach and then closes when the food has been ingested. 

 When food mixed with acid reverses back into the esophagus it is called reflux.  The body has a built-in reflex response when it needs to quickly get something out of the body. For example, if we eat something that is contaminated with bad bacteria the body will rapidly respond to get it out.  

    Difficulties arise, however when the valve opens when you are not eating or burping. When food, now mixed with stomach acid, backs up into the esophagus, which is lined with delicate tissue, it burns. 

And why shouldn’t it burn? This occurs because the esophagus was not designed to digest food but to move food downward. Also, the esophagus has acid-sensitive nerve endings to let you know that something is wrong with that area and it needs help. 

    Now let’s talk about stomach acid. 

The biggest misconception about heartburn and acid reflux is that it is caused by too much stomach acid which is not the case most of the time. Actually,  acid reflux and heartburn can be caused by not enough stomach acid to digest the food properly. That is right, Not Enough stomach acid. 

Acid reflux followed by heartburn can even be caused by food intolerances that develop due to poor digestion and bacterial overgrowth. When stomach acid is low it can result in bacterial overgrowth causing reflux. 

 This is an interesting finding. Research shows that stomach acid declines with age but the incidence of acid reflux rises. You would think that with a lower stomach acid you would have less heartburn but that is not the case.  To reduce the symptoms of heartburn cut down on foods that are acidic. These include spicy foods, citrus, tomatoes, chocolate, alcohol, and coffee.  

  Also, you might want to avoid after-dinner mints, peppermint and spearmint because they actually irritate the esophagus resulting in heartburn. 

There are several other causes of heartburn such as stomach ulcers, improper stomach emptying and anxiety, and stress. I hope you know now that heartburn is a symptom of acid reflux. 

Here are factors that contribute to acid reflux 

1.Hiatal hernias

2. Eating too  much food, too quickly

3.Magnesium deficiency 

4.Eating foods that weaken or irritate the muscular lining of the esophageal sphincter

5. Bacteria overgrowth

Let’s move on to the condition known as GERD  or Gastroesophageal – reflux – disease which is a result of chronic reflux. It occurs in those who suffer heartburn more than two times a week in an ongoing manner. This frequent reflux irritates the sensitive tissues of the esophagus and can result in more serious diseases. The most common symptoms of GERD are : 

Heartburn more than 2 times a week
Indigestion

Belching 

Upset stomach 

Regurgitation

Difficulty swallowing 

And, damage to the esophageal lining.

As with acid reflux, GERD is not an incident of too much stomach acid. 

Obesity is highly related to GERD. The higher a person’s BMI is, the higher the likelihood that they would have GERD. Any excess weight can contribute as it adds pressure to the stomach and the esophagus valve.  

People who suffer from GERD are at a higher risk for cancer and should consult their physician about this matter. 

  Now to quickly recap.

 Acid reflux is when stomach acid flows the wrong way, back up the tube from the stomach into the esophagus. Heartburn is a painful sensation in the chest that occurs as a result. GERD refers to a condition that develops as a result of chronic reflux. This can cause damage to the esophagus, along with painful and uncomfortable symptoms. 

 Now for all of you who have fibromyalgia please remember that maintaining a healthy GI tract is of utmost importance because inflammation in any body system influences the ability of the body to respond to any detrimental condition. Remember all body systems work together to maintain good health. 

  This preceding information is just the beginning of addressing  The Mystery of Acid Reflux and G.E. R. D. If you want more individualized help on this or your health in general: Then 

  1. Available to each of you is a free 45- 60-minute Fibromyalgia transformation call so we can more easily chat about everything that’s going on with your health,  what is missing in terms of the solutions and how I can best support you in your goals. You can go to my website www.amandaeliselove.com and under Contact, there is a schedule where you can sign up.

Everything I mentioned will be in the show notes. 

Looking forward to talking with you soon for episode 20.

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