Dr. Reese’s Bits and Pieces
November 2019 Newsletter
Each year, as we enter the Season of Eating (Halloween thru Super Bowl Sunday), I warn everyone about preventing parasites. Anytime someone else is touching your food (restaurants, parties, potlucks, catered events, etc.) food can become contaminated by bacteria or parasites. If you have a strong acid barrier in your stomach, you will kill these little invaders upon ingestion. If you are like most Americans, your stomach doesn’t produce enough hydrochloric acid to lower the pH in your stomach to kill invaders and digest your food.
Starts in the Mouth
Once food enters the mouth your salivary glands go to work starting the process of digestion with the salivary enzymes amylase and lipase and lubrication of the mouth and throat. If someone you know is an extremely slow eater, it could be their body doesn’t produce enough saliva to properly lubricate their food. The “chew it twice and swallow” person has not properly tagged their food and started the digestion of sugars and fats. Their gastric and small intestine digestion will have to work much harder.
When chewing begins, a signal is sent to the stomach to produce hydrochloric acid to lower the pH to around 1. Many people have low acid production so the pH stays above 3. This inhibits your absorption of protein and minerals. The highly acidic stomach is needed to trigger the pancreas and the gallbladder to start secreting their enzymes and bile into the small intestine. Not enough stomach acid and these secretions are inhibited plus your stomach doesn’t produce intrinsic factor which is needed to assimilate B12 from your food. If your stomach doesn’t get acidic enough, any food-born infections will survive and pass on to the rest of the body.
Achlorhydria, also known as hypochlorhydria, refers to states where the production of hydrochloric acid in gastric secretions of the stomach and other digestive organs is absent or low, respectively. It is associated with various other medical problems.
Irrespective of the cause, achlorhydria can result as known complications of bacterial overgrowth and intestinal metaplasia and symptoms are often consistent with those diseases:
gastroesophageal reﬂux disease (source needed) abdominal discomfort early satiety weight loss diarrhea constipation abdominal bloating anemia stomach infection malabsorption of food. carcinoma of stomach. (wikipedia.com)
When you are dealing with GI symptoms, the first thing you should address is a lack of HCL. Taking HCL with each meal is a start. Increase your dose by one capsule every day until you feel a warming in your stomach. Reduce your dose gradually over time until your stomach no longer feels warm, bloating or upset.
Acid Stopping Medication
The standard treatment for heartburn, reflux and indigestion is acid stopping medications both prescribed and non-prescription. The problem is that most of these symptoms are caused by a lack of HCL and not an excess. The food sits in the stomach and rots which causes the reflux and heartburn.
Dr Mercola states: When PPIs were first approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), they were designed to be taken for no more than six weeks. However, today it is not uncommon to find people who have been taking these drugs for more than 10 years. Long-term use has been associated with a number of different problems, including:Long-term use of PPIs encourages overgrowth of bacteria in your digestive tract. Bacterial overgrowth leads to malabsorption of nutrients and has been linked to inflammation of the stomach wall.
This occurs in both the elderly and individuals on long-term antacid treatments, such as PPIs. Acid breaks down proteins, activates hormones and enzymes and protects your gut against overgrowth of bacteria.
Lack of acid results in iron and mineral deficiencies and incomplete digestion of proteins. This may also lead to avitamin B12 deficiency. PPIs are also linked to a reduced absorption of magnesium. Low magnesium levels may lead to muscle spasms, heart palpitations and convulsions.
Your mouth, esophagus and intestines are home to a healthy growth of bacteria, but your stomach is relatively sterile. Stomach acid kills most of the bacteria coming from your food or liquids, protecting your stomach and your intestinal tract from abnormal bacterial growth.
Reducing stomach acid changes the pH of your stomach and allows external bacteria to grow. PPIs may reduce acid between 90 and 95 percent, increasing your risk of salmonella, c. difficile, giardia and listeria infections.
Other studies have linked the use of acid-reducing drugs to the development of pneumonia, tuberculosis (TB) and typhoid.
The distortion of the gut microbiome affects your immune system and may increase your overall risk of infection. In vitro studies, those done on cells in test tubes, have found PPIs damage the function of white blood cells, responsible for fighting infection.Lowering stomach acid production may also reduce the amount of calcium absorption, which in turnmay leadto osteoporosis. (https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2016/06/22/proton-pump-inhibitors-heartburn.aspx)
We will be closed for Thanksgiving Wednesday 11/27 through Friday 11/29. Have a great holiday!