Indigestion

(Dyspepsia)

Etiology:

Failure of proper digestion and absorption of food in the alimentary tract, and the consequences thereof.

CAUSES:

May be caused by lack of Hydrochloric Acid (HCL) in the stomach, needed to digest food, or may be caused by emotional factors. May be caused by disorders of the stomach or of the small and/or large intestine, but can be a disorder in itself. Chewing with the mouth open, talking while chewing, swallowing too much air by gulping down food, and washing down needed enzymes for digestion by drinking liquids during a meal result in indigestion. They cause a fermentation of food in the colon that produces hydrogen and carbon dioxide. Carbohydrates are the main food source responsible for gas because of the bacteria they contain. It is important to find out which foods your body cannot digest and stay away from foods that cause this reaction. Stress and a lack of digestive enzymes can also cause intestinal problems.

SYMPTOMS:

Abdominal pain or discomfort, gas, heartburn, a bloated feeling, belching, nausea, vomiting, and a burning sensation after eating.

Stomach Acid Self-Test: Determine if hydrochloric acid is needed by taking a tbsp. of apple cider vinegar or lemon juice. If this makes your heartburn go away, then you need more stomach acid. Sip apple cider vinegar mixed with water with meals. If it makes your symptoms worse, then you have too much HCL and shouldn’t take enzymes that contain HCL.

NUTRIENTS:

Aloe vera juice, 1/4 cup on an empty stomach in the morning and at night, will relieve heartburn and gastrointestinal symptoms.

Proteolytic enzymes, 2 tablets with meals and 1 tablet with snacks, is important to relieve gas and bloating.

Acidophilus, 1/2 hr. before meals, is necessary for normal digestion.

Garlic capsules, 2 capsules with meals, aids in digestion and destroys unwanted bacteria in the bowel.

Vitamin B complex, 100 mg. with meals, the B-vitamins are essential for normal digestion.

Alfalfa (tablets or liquid), taken as directed on the label, supplies needed vitamin K and trace minerals.

Pancreatin, 3 after meals, is a helpful digestive enzyme.

HERBS:

Catnip
Chamomile
Comfrey (do not use over long periods of time)
Goldenseal root
Fennel

RECOMMENDATIONS:

If upper gastrointestinal gas pancreatin or lower gastrointestinal gas trace minerals are needed, antacids are useless. When having problems with excess gas, use the juice of one fresh lemon in one quart of lukewarm water as an enema to balance the pH of the body.

Acidophilus is good because a shortage of friendly bacteria is often the problem.

Consume balanced meals with fibrous foods, such as fresh fruit, vegetables, and whole grain foods.

Avoid refined carbohydrates (sugar), such as bakery products, macaroni, dairy products, caffeine, citrus juice, tomatoes, pepper, carbonated beverages, potato chips, junk foods, fried and fatty foods, spicy foods, red meat, beans, and snacks. Decrease salt intake. Processed food, junk food, and all dairy products cause excess of mucus formation, which results in inadequate digestion of protein. Limit intake of peanuts, lentils, and soybeans. They contain an enzyme inhibitor.

Food combinations are important. Protein and starches are a poor combination, as are vegetables and fruits. Do not drink milk with meals. Sugars should never be consumed with proteins and starches.

Sip one tbsp. pure apple cider vinegar in a glass of water with meals to aid digestion.

Charcoal tablets are excellent for absorbing gas, but they interfere with other medication and nutrients. Do not take over long periods of time.

CONSIDERATIONS:

Drink the juice of a lemon in a cup of water first thing in the morning. This is a good healer and blood purifier. Hypoglycemics (low blood sugar) and people who have had abdominal surgery should take pancreatin to help digest foods. After meals, use pancreatin if a stuffed feeling or a rumbling and gurgling from bloating and gas occurs.

Rice and barley broth relieve gas, bloating, and heartburn. Use 5 parts water to one part grain, and boil for 10 minutes. Put the lid on and simmer for 55 minutes more. Strain, cool, and sip throughout the day.

Exercise, such as brisk walking and stretching enhance the digestive process.

The elderly typically lack HCL and pancreatin.

Chew food thoroughly; do not gulp it down in a hurry.

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