Surviving GERD without being dependent on meds?

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whitecat
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Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 1/18/2012 11:05 PM (GMT -6)   
I've been diagnosed to have GERD November of 2011. I have acid reflux; my symptoms are stomach hyperacidity, heartburn and nausea after eating. The doctor put me on Omeprazole for 21 days and after that the symptoms came back and they put me in for Esomeprazole (Nexium) for another 21 days. After the Nexium I still have the symptoms nausea and hyperacidity though I haven't had heartburn since then, just the feeling of tightness on my chest sometimes.

My question is has anyone survived GERD without relying on medication?

Because i do not want to rely on medication and am prepared to do away completely with the food recommended for GERD sufferers to stay away from (coffee, chocolate, citrus fruits, sour food, spicy, dairy etc., including meat and fatty food)

Has anyone here (or has anyone heard of people who has) had any success in recovering just from that or is medication a permanent part of being a GERD sufferer?

I'm hoping that I can stay away from using GERD medication because of the long-term side effects of it's use on the kidneys and such.

Replies would be very helpful <3

aeshleyrose
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Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 656
   Posted 1/19/2012 2:32 AM (GMT -6)   
Hey WhiteCat,

Welcome to HealingWell.com. I'm sure you've noticed that this is a great site with lots of advice, I hope you can get the answers you're looking for here.

There are others who have tried more than I have to kick the Nexium, but I did it once and the rebound was so bad that I ran back to them instantly. I also tried switching PPI's just about a month ago and it didn't work. I'm scared to think that I am dependent on the Nexium but I don't really know how else I would live if it I didn't have it.

Also, I follow a vegan diet now with no trigger foods and I still have the "tightness in the chest" feeling. My symptoms are very similar to yours - when I started Nexium, the actual heartburn went away, but in its place are the tightness and the nausea and occasional bloating.

That being said, we are all different, and maybe you would respond better to kicking PPI's than I did. Just be advised that the "rebound" period (where your stomach goes nuts and starts producing pre-medication acid levels) can be quite severe. This is where most people give up - it can last for quite some time. Most of us get it anywhere between days 10-14.

Please feel free to ask ANY questions you may have.

Take care,
Ashley

whitecat
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 1/19/2012 4:08 AM (GMT -6)   
Thank you so much for replying Ashley.

Yes that's exactly what I'm experiencing right now. My stomach is very acidic--worse than when I started on Nexium, it's just been 3 days that I'm off it, I hope I can survive the 14 day period that you are saying. I don't think going back to Nexium is an option either since i've experienced rashes/ hives on the final week of taking the Nexium.

For now i'm just trying to eat vegetables and fruits. I have been looking for Aloe Vera juice to help in my recovery too but so far I have not found any without any citric acid in it :(

lanab
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2011
Total Posts : 136
   Posted 1/19/2012 7:01 AM (GMT -6)   
I survive without any meds and doing pretty good.

You should avoid all citrus fruits, what you need to eat proper Ph food, there was a link to a document from someone which helped me keep the right Ph.

stkitt
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Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 1/19/2012 9:01 AM (GMT -6)   
 
Hello and welcome to HealingWell.  I have read of many people who do not take medications .  I survived for years on antacids until my sx became more pronounced and then I started on PPIs which, in my case, help 90% of the time.
 
lanab, do you still have the link to the Ph information ?
 

 
~~Kitt~~
Moderator: Anxiety, Osteoarthritis,
GERD/Heartburn and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.

www.healingwell.com

"only as high as I reach can I grow, only as far as I seek can I go, only as deep as I look can I see, only as much as I dream can I be"

mudmagnetmum
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Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 1604
   Posted 1/20/2012 7:00 AM (GMT -6)   
The pH information can be found on Sunbeam's thread "Try the Koufman diet........." - it's a diet combining pH neutral and low fat foods. It is not to be confused with "acid/alkaline balance" type of naturopathic diet which is based on a concept (not proven scientifically) that foods that leave an alkaline residue in the body are healing. The Koufman diet is a strategy developed particularly for patients with LPR and the idea is to eat foods which are of low acidity (i.e. their pH is near neutral).

Have a look at Sunbeam's thread http://www.healingwell.com/community/default.aspx?f=45&m=2210975

MMM
New stuff: GERD, Recurrent cystitis/Overactive bladder
Lifelong stuff: Food allergies/intolerance, eczema, asthma

lanab
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2011
Total Posts : 136
   Posted 1/20/2012 7:17 AM (GMT -6)   
stkitt said...
whitecat


Hello and welcome to HealingWell. I have read of many people who do not take medications . I survived for years on antacids until my sx became more pronounced and then I started on PPIs which, in my case, help 90% of the time.



lanab, do you still have the link to the Ph information ?


Found it now

http://www.arrowscientific.com.au/educational-material/ph-values-of-foods-and-food-products.html

whitecat
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 1/23/2012 4:30 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks everyone for the reply. I'm going to try to watch what i eat now according to those symptoms. I've stopped Nexium for two weeks now and just take the occassional Gaviscon.

So far the symptoms i have left are minor (almost negligible) heart burns (i take blackstrap molasses when i feel a heartburn coming on and it seems to relieve it) minor tightness at the chest and dry mouth and i feel like my stomach is acidic but there's no strong pain or anything, nausea when i eat more than five tablespoons.

lanab
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2011
Total Posts : 136
   Posted 1/23/2012 7:16 AM (GMT -6)   
whitecat said...
Thanks everyone for the reply. I'm going to try to watch what i eat now according to those symptoms. I've stopped Nexium for two weeks now and just take the occassional Gaviscon.

So far the symptoms i have left are minor (almost negligible) heart burns (i take blackstrap molasses when i feel a heartburn coming on and it seems to relieve it) minor tightness at the chest and dry mouth and i feel like my stomach is acidic but there's no strong pain or anything, nausea when i eat more than five tablespoons.


Have you found out what's causing your GERD and taken correct measures?

whitecat
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 1/23/2012 8:28 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi lanab,

I didn't have an endoscopy yet (so far the doctor hasn't recommended it and just gave me Nexium for three weeks.) But the doctor said I most liley have GERD and told me to distribute my food to 6 times a day of small portions and to avoid the usual trigger foods--since the day before i went to the hospital for my first ever heartburn, i did eat a lot (Christmas dinner) then lied down to sleep after not knowing that doing such things are a no-no for GERD sufferers.

The three weeks have passed as I have stated and Nexium helped, but not without side-effects (rashes, hyperacidity after finishing the course of the medication.)

Right now i'm avoiding the usual trigger foods coffee, chocolate, citrus fruits, sour food, spicy, dairy etc., and am working towards eating mostly alkaline foods. So far my stomach feels like it's better unlike the first few days after i finished on the Nexium and i'm hoping it will get better in the next few weeks.

Post Edited (whitecat) : 1/23/2012 7:32:34 AM (GMT-7)


lanab
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2011
Total Posts : 136
   Posted 1/23/2012 2:24 PM (GMT -6)   
The GI specialists doesn't recommend being on PPIs or H2s when you do endoscopy as it will hide the real causes in many cases and make it harder to get correct diagnos, in my country you are advised to not take PPI/H2s 2 weeks prior to endoscopy.

mudmagnetmum
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 1604
   Posted 1/23/2012 4:10 PM (GMT -6)   
Whitecat - did you get tested for Helicobacter?

As Lanab says, if you do get listed for endoscopy they may recommend stopping the acid suppressing medication beforehand. Having said that, I wasn't asked to for my last one - it depends on what tests they plan on doing during the procedure.

MMM
New stuff: GERD, Recurrent cystitis/Overactive bladder
Lifelong stuff: Food allergies/intolerance, eczema, asthma

opnwhl4
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 1/23/2012 6:03 PM (GMT -6)   
I haven't been told to stop PPIs before an EGD, but did for a PH study.

Bill devil
opnwhl4
Moderator: GERD/Heartburn
Nissen 6/06 and 5/09
#3 on 8/24/11

whitecat
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 1/25/2012 10:27 PM (GMT -6)   
mudmagnetmum,

I didn't get tested for Helicobacter yet, also the way I ate before was TERRIBLE, i ate large amounts at a time (though thankfully did not gain much weight as my metabolism is high) in sight and loved coffee, spicy, dairy--everything recommended against acid reflux sufferers and ALSO would sleep after eating..I guess it's no surprise that i have acid reflux right now..

Thanks for recommending the Koufman Diet. Right now the Koufman Diet seems to be working and i'm only taking Gaviscon at night. It hasn't even been a week yet but I feel much better. I really hope this works and I hope I'll be able to get a copy of her book.
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