Reflux? (this one’s for you Lance)

After a post on GUT, a friend posted the following response:

I enjoyed your article. I’ve been suffering from acid reflux for over 10 years. I am curious what specific changes / steps you made to improve your gut health. I know which foods cause me the most problems, and the issue for me is they’re all the ones I love!

I don’t naturally have reflux.  But during the 18 months that I had a lapband in my body, and was abusing it terribly, the sign of overeating and even a slipped lap band was the worst reflux of my life.  As in, I couldn’t keep down a sip of water.  It was miserable.  The thought of someone suffering this for 10 years made my heart heart.  (not burn, but hurt).

All that to say, mental health issues and weight are definitely in my wheelhouse, not so with reflux.  In doing a little research, and listening to a podcast  (listen HERE, it’s worth the time!) interview with Dr. Jeffrey Eisenberg, the author of “Suckered” (a book on the damaging health effects of sugar), I found THIS:

Reflux requires TWO things:

  1.  Dysfunction of the lower esophageal sphincter (LES).  So you have a bad valve.  Not working right.  For whatever the reason.
  2. AND, something that propels or forces acid contents THE WRONG WAY, back into the lower esophagus.

What is that something?  What is the propellent?

Excess hydrogen gas.

And what makes the gas?


It turns out that excess sugar is fermented into hydrogen gas. This accumulation of hydrogen gas results in increased pressure in the stomach and is the propellant that drives the acid contents backwards into the esophagus.

So my answer to my friend:  give up added and processed sugar.  And it’s sneaky and everywhere.  And it hurts.  But maybe not as much as fire in your throat.

Sugar is bad.  And I don’t like labeling food, people, things as bad or good.  Rather, I prefer to think of our use or reactions to people or things as negative or positive.  But dammit, sugar is just bad.

Light and Love,

Big Laura

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