It continues to amaze me how much bad advice is given by
people who definitely should know better (or should learn
more before they dispense useless advice).
A perfect example of bad advice in action is this letter I
got last week from a GERD sufferer:
I've had GERD for about 6 years now with terrible burning
in my stomach. I've done as my doctor ordered--taken
Prilosec OTC, Prevacid, Protonix and now about a year of
The pain goes away for awhile then returns. I need to
know what to do to get rid of this as I am in constant
burning in my stomach.
I eat NO spicy foods (pizza, etc.) at all! If I do not
find a program that works for my symptoms I have to go and
have a scope done in January.
I got a copy a little while ago of your menus, got to day
3 then I could not do it anymore because you had choices
like tomatoes, garlic and all the things the doctor said I
could not have!
WHY do you put those on the menu when people with GERD
cannot eat those things? I WANT to try your program but
need some help with the meal programs if I am to continue.
I feel like giving UP my stomach hurts so much!
What can I do to start feeling better?
Thanks for your help!
SB: Roger, those foods that the doctor told you that you
can't eat have ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with your GERD
Zero. Zip. Zilch.
Tomatoes and garlic are both VERY alkaline to the body--
meaning GOOD for you (and for getting an alkaline pH).
That's why they're in Great Taste No Pain.
Same goes for spices...
All spices (with the exception of curry and table salt)
are alkaline to the body.
Our bodies are naturally alkaline and therefore need to
stay alkaline in order to have great health. One of the
best ways to stay alkaline is to eat mainly alkaline foods,
which includes tomatoes, garlic and spices.
Now I'll tell you what DOES cause GERD symptoms. Ready?
What causes GERD symptoms is too much acid in the stomach
caused by eating acidic foods and bad food combinations.
Here's what I mean:
Your body cannot effectively digest acid-forming foods or
badly combined foods--they put a tremendous strain on ALL
of your digestive organs and cause your stomach to
overproduce acid in order to break down those foods.
While your stomach is desperately trying to digest your
food and all that acid is being secreted, it has to go
somewhere...and that somewhere is usually UP.
That's when you get the acidy burps, the burning pain and
the 4-alarm fire in your chest. Sound familiar?
And any nutrients from your foods have been completely
obliterated from all the acid at this point.
Since your body's hunger signal is triggered by a need for
nutrients--not just a stomach full of food--you can
actually feel hungry again even though that acidy blob of
food is still in your stomach! Ironic, eh?
And heaven help you if you eat again. You'll start the
acid cycle all over again.
Now the kicker is that pills (antacids, H2 blockers and
proton pump inhibitors) actually make the problem WORSE.
These medicines "work" by neutralizing the acid in your
stomach or stopping your stomach from producing acid.
But your stomach needs acid to digest proteins. So the
medicines stop the stomach from doing its job.
Eventually you end up with only partially digested food
being pushed into the intestines. And that's bad... very
Partially digested food causes gas, bloating, constipation
and diarrhea (and can lead to diverticulosis,
diverticulitis, IBS and many other problems).
It's interesting to note that gas, bloating, constipation
and diarrhea are some of the published side effects for
antacids, H2 blockers and PPI's--they CAUSE those symptoms,
and now you know why and how!
PS: Jo found out what was causing her heartburn...and how
to end it:
Wow... I had no idea what was causing my heartburn and
stomach cramps. All I knew was that there was way too much
acid in my system.
After my mum told me about finding your site, I went and
had a look myself. I am still on the 1st 4 day stint and
already seeing an improvement. My antacid consumption (if
you can call it that) has dwindled to zero.
I had withdrawn all dairy from my diet as I thought I was
completely allergic. At one time I stopped all wheat for
almost a year as I thought that was causing the problem.
Most of all, I hated feeling confused about what to try
next, I really was out of options. To find answers that
make sense is a God-send.
You should see me now. In the kitchen I feel like the
food police - "you can't have that with that... you can
have that, but only in 3 hours time..." you get the message.
Thank you, thank you, and thank you so much. Life is going to
be so much more pleasant from now on thanks to
"greattastenopain" and hope abounds.