Dr. Carolyn Chambers Clark, Award-Winning Author and Wellness Nurse Practitioner

Heartburn (Acid Reflux)

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Do you have heartburn?

 

*Are you over 50? 

*Are you taking one of the popular heartburn drugs such as Nexium, Prevacid, Prilosec, Tagamet or Pepcid?

*Have you been taking it for more than a year?

*If you have, you’re at an increased risk for a broken hip


Why is there a risk with these drugs? 


Researchers think that these drugs reduce the acid in the stomach and make it more difficult for your body to absorb bone-building calcium. That can weaken your bones and lead to fractures. If you’re older, this can be life-threatening.

What should you do to protect yourself?

  1. never take the drug for longer than a year
  2. talk to your health care provider and ask for a safer alternative
  3. use safer self-care measures, e.g.,
  • 3 times a day, drink ¼ glass of aloe vera juice (from the health food store only; if you try to make your own, you could develop diarrhea)
  • sip peppermint tea, a known stomach calmative that doesn’t disrupt calcium absorption
  • keep a record of what you’ve recently eaten, done or thought when your heartburn starts; take action to stop doing those things
  • eat small meals and take your time; swallowed air and overeating can result in indigestion, gas and bloating   
  • sip warm water as you eat; it dilutes the heartburn effects of many foods   
  • never eat a large meal at night and don't eat after 7 p.m. (this will also help you lose weight!)   
  • look for supplements at the health food store that contain digestive enzymes; as you age, your body makes fewer of these     
  • add friendly bacteria that can help you digest your food better; get an acidophyllis supplement at your health food store     
  • sip chamomile tea after meals (unless you're allergic to ragweed)     
  • avoid coffee, chocolate, and alcohol; they all puff up your throat and increase acid reflux (heartburn)     
  • eat fresh papaya or pineapple with protein or an hour after you eat carbohydrates; both fruits contain digestive enzymes
 To order digestive enzymes or aloe vera at a discount, go to http://www.iherb.com/, use the search box to find your supplements, and then use BNN951 at checkout to get $10 off your order.

Think positive and you'll be positive!

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