Pramod, a software professional aged around 25 years walked into our clinic sometime a year ago with complaints of dry cough and difficulty in breathing, mostly in later part of the night and morning on waking, since 2 years. He had failed to improve despite treatments by consultants of various specialities including respiratory, E.N.T. and so on.
A careful investigation into the lifestyle of Pramod helped us understand that his problem originated from the gastrointestinal system rather than the respiratory system. Asimple modification in his lifestyle and routine lead to a rapid improvement in his health and a complete recovery in a few months.
WHAT WAS PRAMOD SUFFERING FROM? GERD- Gastroesophageal Reflux DiseaseFood that we consume stays in the stomach for 3 hours, when it is broken down into simpler particles by the hydrochloric acid secreted in the stomach which ensures an easier digestive process when the food reaches the intestine later. Nature has designed the stomach in a way that it can withstand the acidic nature of Hcl. It has also ensured that this acid does not reflux into the food pipe (Oesophagus),by a valve at the lower end of the food pipe, which remains always closed and opens only when food enters from the oesophagus into the stomach. This a delicate structure which can’t withstand the onslaught of the acid. Various factors including faulty lifestyle contributes to the valve becoming lax and the resultant acid reflux.
WHAT CAUSES ACID REFLUX?
- late dinner and retiring to sleep within 2 -3 hours
- A heavy meal at the end of the day
- Intake of alcohol and smoking tobacco
- Heavy exercises like weight lifting, crunches etc.,
HOW DOES GERD PRESENTS ITSELF? Heart burn RegurgitationThough the above two are the classical symptoms of GERD, one can present without these symptoms,but with dry cough or difficulty in breathing, hoarseness of voice, mouth ulcers, bitter or sour taste in the mouth, vomiting, feeling like a lump in the throat,sore throat,or rarely headache or ear pain.
HOW TO GET OVER THIS?Worry not. You can overcome these issues by incorporating a few modification in your routine like
- Having an early, light dinner
- Sleeping 2 -3 hours after dinner
- In the event, when a person can’t have an early meal due to his or her work schedule, he or shecan lie in a reclining position in the early part of the sleep and switch to his regular posture later on.
- Maintaining an ideal body weight by including mild to moderate exercise in his or her schedule
- Limiting the intake of fried foods, heavy desserts, caffeine, highly acidic foods
- A healthy stress management schedule
Let us make sure that the acid remains in the stomach and excels in its pursuit of making digestion simple and prevent it going astray into unwanted territories.
HAPPY LIVING – Being Proactive Towards Health
M.Sc – Food Science and Nutrition Nutritionist,
Aarudraa Homoeopathic Speciality Centre,