Have you experienced any of these symptoms?
- Dry Coughing
- Prolonged Hiccups
These can all be symptoms of acid reflux, or GERD. You may have been officially diagnosed, or just know from all the people you have spoken with. You may be popping antacids, or have a prescription for a medication that brings relief.
The desire for relief from the discomfort and pain of acid reflux is understandable. Yet, most don’t realize that medications that give relief actually cause downstream troubles.
You see, study after study have clearly demonstrated that acid reflux is primarily caused by too little stomach acid – NOT too much as we are led to believe! Shocked? I was too.
That seemingly pesky stomach acid is a vital part of digestion. One of nature’s strongest acids, hydrochloric acid (HCl) is designed to make light work of breaking down proteins, like the meat in that burger you just ate. If you put HCl directly on your hand, it would quickly burn you – badly.
Another key “digestive juice” component is pepsin, a digestive enzyme that breaks down protein. HCl activates pepsin and starts the protein digestion.
If digestive juices are in the wrong place, it hurts! Likely because of the acidity and because the pepsin is beginning to digest the tissue in your esophagus instead of your lunch!
The cells of your stomach lining are coated with mucus to protect them from digestive juices. The lining of your esophagus is not nearly so well coated. So when the sphincter at the base of the esophagus is loose and these digestive juices bubble up … it hurts!
Acid reflux is not evidence of excessive stomach acid; it’s evidence of stomach acid in the wrong place.