Stomach acid, over or under production?

In this article we show you the tools to know if what you are really suffering is over production or under production of stomach acid. Here we tell you the symptoms and the options you have.

We are designed to eat food full of enzymes (raw), not processed, nor genetically modified. Besides we should take time to chew them enough and facilitate the digestion. If this happens, food would get into the stomach with some enzymes to be pre-digested and even till 75% of it.

After this pre-digestion term, clorhidric acid and pepsin are introduced. The first one stops the action of all enzymes in food, activates the function of pepsin and together they start breaking the food into smaller pieces. After this happens this bolus full of nutrients, moves to the small intestine. There, the acid is neutralized and the pancreatic enzymes get into action to continue with the digestion process. Once all this is completed, the nutrients go through the intestine wall and get into the bloodstream.

This is the nature willing but as we live nowadays, this does not always happen.

When we process and cook the food, the heat between 350°C and 400°C destroy the enzymes that food contains. This mean that most of the food the majority of us eat, has low enzymes content causing undigested food for at least one hour due to the skip of predigesting phase. This entire situation makes your body produce more quantity of stomach acid in order to compensate.

In this attempt, most of the food still gets into the small intestine without being digested. And this has mainly a consequence: an excess of stomach acid that leads to a stomach deficiency later.

 Excess of stomach acid.

This is obvious. In order to compensate the lack of enzymes coming from food, stomach increases the production of stomach acid leading to an acid indigestion. Therefore, taking antacid medication does not fix the problem, it just relieve one symptom. Subsequently, this undigested food, get into the small gut and burping, bloating and chronic digestive ailments happens. As a compensatory reaction, the pancreas increases a lot the production on enzymes to be discharged in this part of the gut. All this situation is negatively affected by the consumption of food that is difficult to digest such as gluten, alcohol, high sugar content food and stimulating substances like caffeine that can double the stomach acid production.

For many people, the simplest solution for this situation is taking digestive enzymes supplements that can digest 70% of food in pre-acid phase and reducing the need of huge amounts of stomach acid and digestive system’s stress.

If you make your stomach produce a huge amount of acid for years in order to compensate the lack of food enzymes, what do you think will happen long term to your stomach production?

Stomach acid deficit. There you go!

As we get older, the stomach ability to produce acid start to decrease and the following is the reduction of the capacity to correctly digest food in the stomach and bringing deep consequences over health.

40% of people after 40 years have lack of stomach acid and after 60 years, this percentage increase to 50%. A person older than 40 years that goes to the doctor’s office has 90% of chance of having low stomach acid.

Having this condition may lead other problems such as not efficient digestion. There is not enough stomach acid capable of decreasing the pH levels to 2.0, required to activate the digestive enzyme called pepsin. This means a partly food digestion that cause burping, boating, flatulence, diarrhea, constipation, autoimmune diseases, skin problems, rheumatoid arthritis and many intestinal gut ailments such as Crohn’s disease.

It is estimated that 80% of people with food sensitivities actually have under production of stomach acid at some point.

Many vitamins and minerals need proper levels of stomach acid to be adequately absorbed such as calcium, iron, vitamin B12 and folic acid. Vitamin B12 particularly requires enough acid to be efficiently utilized; otherwise the deficiency of this vitamin can cause severe problems.

Due to low levels of acidity (high pH) and not digested food the reproduction of pathogen bacteria is eased in the stomach interfering with digestion once again. This is because stomach acid works as a barrier to protect this organ from pathogens (bacteria and parasites).

It is important for you to know the symptoms of low stomach acid production:

- Bloating, burping and flatulence right after eating.

- Indigestion, diarrhea and constipation.

- Heartburn.

Does this sound very similar to the symptoms of stomach acid excess, doesn’t it? Well, yes. Up to 95% of people who think that might be suffering an excess of stomach acid are actually suffering exactly the opposite condition. The usage of antacid is clearly the worst solution because specifically exacerbate the problem while it only hide the symptom.

Any solution?

1. Digestive enzyme supplements that improve digestion and let the stomach get some rest while it recover the ability to produce enough amounts of acid to function normally.

2. Blend a teaspoon of Apple Cider Vinegar with 3 to 4 tablespoon of water and a teaspoon of honey and drink this every meal.

3. Betaine HCL supplements can also help but must be used only under doctor supervision in order to avoid damage in the stomach lining.

4. Use seawater plasma to enhance digestion.