Helping people with gas, bloating, digestive and stomach disorders and constipation are a big part of my nutritional practice. Most often these are the symptoms of a bigger issue but sometimes they are a result of a diet that has gone astray.
Many of my clients use over-the-counter or prescription drugs. Others rely on digestive enzymes to manage their symptoms. These remedies can be helpful in the short term but eventually they stop working, and in fact, magnify your belly problems in the long term creating a larger issue. The gas, bloating and stomach pain you are experiencing is indicating that your stomach doesn't like what you are putting in it. The remedies allow you to eat what you like, but eating what you like is destroying your gut and leading you towards high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
These digestive aids replace the normal functioning of your stomach. They are addictive. Your stomach stops producing the enzymes necessary to digest your foods. So without a dietary change you will increasingly need these “helpers”.
Also, most people who have stomach issues have too low acid levels. Ninety percent of people were misdiagnosed by their doctor as having high acid levels when in fact they had low levels. The cause of acid reflux is often a result of the food sitting in your stomach and not being digested efficiently because we have low acid. Stomach acids decline with age and ant-acids destroy what little acids you have left.
What can you do if you have stomach issues:
Do not drink water with your meal as it dilutes your stomach acids.
Avoid cold drinks.
Do not lay down for at least two hours after eating. In fact, a leisurely walk after eating is recommended.
Drink lemon water - lemon lowers acid levels but unlike antacids it stimulates digestive juices.
Avoid or limit the foods on the Acid side of the acid/alkaline list such as processed foods, sugar, alcohol, meat and diary.
Add some stomach digestives into your diet. These are herbs and foods that promote good stomach function such as black pepper, ginger, turmeric, fennel and cumin.
See a nutritionist for help.
Stomach distress is not normal. Seek help.
These are just a few hints to help your stomach function better. When “we know better we do better” so now that you know, wean yourself off antacids and change your diet. You will live longer and feel better!!!
Susanne Jakubowski is a holistic nutritionist, yoga teacher, Thai Yoga Therapist, and cancer survivor.