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The All-Natural Regimen That Has Helped My Reflux Problem

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  • Originally posted by Thistle View Post
    Have you asked them why they tell you this?

    The alternative to surgery for GERD is lifestyle modifications and drugs.

    Well, my last statement is moot. I came from my gastro doc and my hernia is now a para-esophageal hernia that probably twisted a few nights ago when I went to the e/r.
    He's setting me up with a surgeon ASAP as the only way to correct this is via surgery and it needs to be done fairly quickly. I'm going to a surgeon who did a Nissen on a friend last year, so we'll see what he recommends as the correction.
    Just what I need......

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    • If you haven't done so already, head over to the Nissen Fundoplication forum here and check out the thread that provides questions for your surgeon (it's one of the threads pinned to the top of the page). You'll need to ask a lot of questions to be sure that the surgeon you hire is up to the job.

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      • Originally posted by Thistle View Post
        If you haven't done so already, head over to the Nissen Fundoplication forum here and check out the thread that provides questions for your surgeon (it's one of the threads pinned to the top of the page). You'll need to ask a lot of questions to be sure that the surgeon you hire is up to the job.
        Thanks Thistle!

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        • Saw my surgeron today and used some of the questions from the list.
          He took his time and went thru the issues, the options and the surgery, which will be a "loose" Nissen wrap due to my Barretts, and hernia repair. Lap surgery is planned unless something really goes south while he is in there. Worse case he puts the stomach back, repairs the hernia with no wrap and I continue on with meds to handle the GERD and keep the Barretts in check.
          He can't schedule for 2 more weeks, which sucks since I hate waiting.
          I liked him, and more importantly, he's done a lot of these procedures (including one with a good friend of mine) and does about 100 para-esophageal hernia repairs in the course of a year.

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          • Hi Jas,
            It would be better to continue this info in a thread more specifically related to Nissen or Hernia Repair surgery, as this thread is specifically about using natural supplements and lifestyle changes and not about surgery or pills.
            I'm glad you liked the surgeon and I hope they fix you quickly!
            Best,
            NYer

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            • Originally posted by NYer View Post
              Hi Jas,
              It would be better to continue this info in a thread more specifically related to Nissen or Hernia Repair surgery, as this thread is specifically about using natural supplements and lifestyle changes and not about surgery or pills.
              I'm glad you liked the surgeon and I hope they fix you quickly!
              Best,
              NYer
              No problem...I was going to update the Nissen thread after the surgery.
              And I still plan on using your regime after the surgery also as I think it has helped, especially the Absorb Aid and the calcium citrate.
              Thanks again

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              • I just started someone else on those and it's helping him.

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                • can we use the absorbaid in powder form instead of capsules.

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                  • Yes. Of course.

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                    • to NYer

                      NYer, I read pretty much this whole thread last night! Thanks for all the great information and for sticking around for the past couple of years.

                      I was diagnosed with GERD about 15 years ago, and experience it off and on. As I get older it seems to be more severe, when it does flare up, unfortunately.

                      I, like you, prefer natural remedies and some of the ones that have helped in the past are the DGL licorice, digestive enzymes (although what I was using was the Digest Gold, which you didn't recommend and I'm not completely sure it helped as I was doing a lot of other things at the time), aloe vera juice (I find this very soothing), and things like raising the head of the bed, not eating before bed, etc. Normally, those would be enough to help it go away after a little while. Oh, and I have resorted to some OTC medications such as Tagamet or Zantac at times, but somehow those have become less and less effective over the years.

                      Recently, I have been have a very bad bout of GERD. My first action was to go to my holistic practitioner - a chiropractor who also is trained in Nutrition Response Testing (NRT) which uses reflexology (muscle testing) to determine the weak organs and body systems and the treatment is with diet (sometimes elimination of offending foods, such as wheat, dairy, etc.) and also with Standard Process brand supplements (which I really love).

                      Right now she has me taking certain digestive enzymes, chlorophyl (to help the stomach lining apparently), and an omega 3 supplement. She says I test sensitive to wheat, dairy, soy, sugar, white rice and corn. I've cut out most of these and try to eat a lot of fruits and vegetables, plus whatever is not on the no-no list. I don't have too hard of a time cutting out wheat, as I've tended to do well on low carb type diets and am used to going without it.

                      I believe this enzymes are helping, in addition to aloe vera juice and the diet. But unfortunately, the main problem seems to come at night. Even though I now have the bed raised up to 10 inches, I still wake up with the sour taste in the mouth and can tell I've had reflux (I am one of those that rarely has heartburn, just other symptoms of GERD).

                      Anyhow, the only thing I can conclude (short of having tests run which I haven't done yet), is that the LES is not functioning properly, and I have no idea whether it's too little or too much acid that is causing the situation. I took a "test" online once a year or so ago that is supposed to determine whether the ACV would help me or not and the test (I forget how it worked) indicated I was one of those the ACV would not help, as my problem was too much stomach acid as opposed to too little. I have no idea whether that test was valid or not - it was from a "report" I bought from a guy named Joe Barton, if you're familiar with him. His initial recommendation to cure GERD was apples. I didn't really find the apples to help a lot, but of course apples ARE good for ya.

                      I have now started a 14 day treatment of Prilosec OTC, something I've never actually tried before, to at least let the area heal a bit, as I have a lot of inflammation in the LES area (I can tell). And in the meantime, I'm continuing to do the natural remedies, diet, etc. I need to also get somemore DGL as I really think that helps, too.

                      Calcium/Magnesium is something that I need to increase. I make a cal/mag drink that's very absorbable (made of calcium gluconate, calcium carbonate in a solution of apple cider vinegar). I think the idea of calcium helping to strengthen the LES is very interesting. It sort of makes sense since the function of calcium (one of them) is to cause muscle contraction, whereas magnesium relaxes the muscle. I read on another forum that someone thought taking too much magnesium was causing their LES to relax too much at night and cause reflux. Had never thought of that. One has to have the correct ratio of the two minerals, obviously.

                      Anyway, that's all I'm going to write for now! Sorry this is so long, but I was inspired by all that you have written and thought I'd contribute my thoughts.

                      Betsy

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                      • Welcome!

                        NYer is full of good information! Even so, I'm impressed that you read all the posts in this thread.

                        I test sensitive to wheat, dairy, soy, sugar, white rice and corn.
                        Processed food is doing all of us in. I'm convinced that a lot of folks here are having problems with diet, not just mechanical issues. I have huge problems with soy and gluten and thus don't eat anything with them. I was born without an LES, so I had a Nissen almost 10 years ago. I may be the only one here who would not have been helped with other solutions, but I've still used some of NYer's ideas because I think they are good ideas.

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                        • Hi Betsy,
                          Thank you for that great post! I just wanted to acknowledge it but I'll write more here tomorrow. (I'm away for the weekend and typing into my cell phone...which is really tedious!).
                          -Nyer

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                          • Hi Thistle,

                            Yes, processed foods are definitely playing havoc with our health, in many ways, I am sure.

                            Wow, being born without an LES! Hopefully the surgery has helped that.

                            I do agree that a lot of people would be helped just by improving their diets and eating more whole foods. It seems like there are a lot of lifestyle changes that can help.

                            Thanks for responding to my post, and I look forward to more discussions. :-)

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                            • Hi NYer,

                              Thanks for the reply. I appreciate you typing on your cell phone. I hate doing that myself! Need to upgrade to one of those sorts that has a keyboard on it.

                              Will look forward to more discussion. By the way, I am starting to think I agree with you about using a wedge pillow versus tipping the bed up. I've raised the head of the bed for years but now it's at a ridiculous 10 inches and yesterday I was walking around with my left hip hurting and wondering if it was the slant of the bed. I did some searches for the type of wedge you recommended and believe I've come up with one that gets really good reviews so will have to order it. At the very least, it would be efficient for traveling, as it folds up and comes with its own carrying case. Cool.

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                              • I just posted this in another thread but I think it's appropriate to have this information in this thread. If you've read this far in this thread, then you're serious about trying to follow a smart regimen of natural treatments.
                                Someone posted this, to which I responded below:

                                I tried some absorbaid today. had some bites of food then took one capsule and took two more after the end of the meal. not sure if it is working or not. should have taken it with water instead of coke me thinks. next time i will drink roobius tea with the meal instead.

                                1. Absorbaid is digestive enzymes. It's not an antacid or a heartburn treatment. It aids in the digestion of food, thereby, helping to prevent heartburn or other reflux issues by helping to empty your stomach faster and prevent fermented food from sitting in your stomach and refluxing. Don't look for an instant result at the end of your meal, other than if you normally feel bloated, you likely won't feel bloated and hopefully you will, therefore, not have any other symptoms....however...

                                2. If you're going to drink Coke (either with the Absorbaid or at any other time of day), then enjoy your reflux and the pain that comes with it. And any advice I can give you, you should just ignore because you're going to continue to feel like crap. I'm not being mean or rude - and I don't mean to pick on you but I'm being very serious...

                                ...Be realistic, you're obviously very smart and interested in helping yourself and you've made a good effort of looking into good natural choices. So, if you are making the effort to investigate and buy these products, then do everything correctly and cut out all the stuff you shouldn't eat/drink. You should not use caffeine (Coke) and you should not drink carbonated beverages (Coke) with your condition - nor sugary drinks or foods (coke).

                                Take the Absorbaid with WATER. And by the way, you should limit how much you drink of any liquid with your meal. I don't know if this is factual but I've been told that too much fluid with your meals dilutes the stomach fluids and makes digestion (absorption) not go as well. I used to drink a lot of water with my meals. I stopped that two years ago and only drink before or after meals - and only water or rooibos tea - nothing else.
                                Nuff said.

                                -----------------
                                Also, regarding probiotics,

                                I use Natren probiotics. Expensive but excellent.
                                Again, don't expect immediate results. It won't necessarily do anything obvious for your GERD. But they do a lot of really good things. If you take a good one regularly, you'll notice that you don't get sick anywhere near as often as you used to (colds and flu). If, however, you have h-Pylori as a causative factor in your GERD, they can be extremely helpful.

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