Stomach acid remedies are so often thought of as just antacids. That perspective misses looking at the underlying cause of the symptoms, which can actually be too little stomach acid and not too much.
Even though heartburn seems so common, an underactive stomach is actually much more common than an overactive stomach. Heartburn can be a reaction to the type of foods you eat, and not necessarily an indicator of a stomach imbalance.
Eating too much meat, dairy, processed foods or fatty foods, not chewing enough and being under stress can all cause your stomach to underperform at its job. The amount of acid that your stomach produces also decreases naturally with age.
Symptoms of a Stomach Imbalance:
- gas or burping after meals
- feeling heavy, bloated or sleepy after eating
- nausea after eating or taking supplements
These are symptoms of both an excess and a deficiency of stomach acid. If you have these symptoms, you need to figure out which one you have.
Swallow a capsule or tablet of hydrochloric acid on an empty stomach. If you feel a burning sensation, your stomach is producing too much acid. If you don’t notice anything, your stomach is most likely not producing enough acid on its own. You can try this with a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar as well.
Stomach Acid Remedies for an Underactive Stomach:
- Eat smaller meals more often
- Chew your food thoroughly
- Avoid red meat, dairy, processed foods and fatty foods
- Avoid alcohol
- Take small sips of room temperature or cool water during a meal, not large gulps of ice water
- Don’t eat when you’re in a rush
- Avoid combining protein and carbohydrates in a meal, and always try to eat fruit on its own
- Try taking a digestive enzyme and/or a probiotic supplement just before meals
Stomach Acid Remedies for an Overactive Stomach:
- **If you have or suspect an ulcer, go see a doctor right away
- Use soothing foods, like aloe vera or raw cabbage juice
- Avoid spicy foods
- Be sure your diet has lots of fiber
- Eat smaller, more frequent meals (food in the stomach triggers the production of acid)
- Avoid alcohol, tobacco, caffeine, nitrates (found in processed foods, especially processed meats) and refined sugars
- Avoid regular use of aspirin and other drugs
Do you have any thoughts on your own level of stomach acid? Let me know by leaving a comment below.