GERD, reflux, heartburn, nausea….

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I wrote about my experiences with these conditions a few months back but in the last few weeks l have heard from so many people l know that they are taking drugs such as Nexium  to treat theses conditions. Yesterday a relative that l am very close to asked me if l had any knowledge of the drug Nexium and l was surprised to be asked this because l spent almost a year trying to stop taking that drug (and a couple of other similar brands) and experienced the most awful acid rebound effect when l decreased the dose too quickly. I decided to repost this because l think it may be of benefit to other people who want to stop taking medications to treat these conditions because of the side effects and who desire to get their digestive systems back on track through appropriate dietary changes.

The post revisited: 

If you recognise some of the words in the heading and you are living with these conditions then you will know how awful they can be. These are some words l would use to describe them-miserable, uncomfortable, painful, inconvenient and unpleasant. If you are like millions of people in the world you will be on some type of acid suppressing drug or you are taking antacids on a regular basis. If you are living with these conditions and you are on a wellness journey, then my advice is to realise that your body is signalling to you that you need to make some changes in your life. There will be some people for whom pharmaceuticals are the only option, but for everyone else – STOP LIVING WITH THESE ILLNESSES and start your wellness journey!

If you have followed me for a while you will know that last year my gallbladder decided it no longer wanted to be in my body and l became very ill. After its removal l developed some quite unpleasant symptoms of acid and bile reflux. I started taking a proton pump inhibitor (Nexium) and felt good. Being the person that l am though l didn’t just want to mask the symptoms, but wanted to achieve the goal of wellness. I tried going off this drug and quickly had an acid rebound that took several months to get on top of again. About five months after the gallbladder removal my health was in a seriously bad state. My holistic GP described me as highly diseased which l knew, but the problem was how was l going to get better. I was having side effects from the Nexium such as cramps in my legs at night and l was worried about my long term bone health. The gastroenterologist had just told me l would be on some form of acid suppressing drug for the rest of my life. I had tightness in my oesophagus and was having trouble swallowing. I also had crycopharyngeal spasms which felt like a heart attack. I was sleeping almost upright and had a lot of nausea. I had developed a vitamin B12 deficiency and a fat malabsorption disorder. The surgeon wanted to put me on a second drug to control the acid in addition to the Nexium and was recommending a procedure called Fundoplication as well as the gastroenterologist wanting to dilate my oesophagus.

Fast forward ten months and l have none of these complaints. I took charge of my health and found a caring holistic Doctor to support my journey. 

How did l get better? It was a challenge. I completely overhauled my diet which l have outlined in other posts. I started taking digestive enzymes before every meal to support my pancreas. I found a holistic dietician who told me about a wonderful supplement called IBEROGAST which l took like a tea before every meal plus a variety of probiotics to improve my gut flora. The holistic GP put me on lots of supplements to improve my overall health and l had a series of Vitamin B12 injections which were amazing. Most of all l was very strict with my diet and if l ate something that caused symptoms then l would remove that for a while. I drank a lot of herbal teas and as my wellness improved l started reducing the dose of Nexium to half and then half again until it was every second day and eventually not at all. I continued with the IBEROGAST and if l have a bad day l will still have a dose of it. All of the horrible symptoms l had have gone as l am now better. I try to have a small meal at night because l don’t like the feeling of being full and l still sleep on a few pillows. I don’t drink large amounts of fluid at once and try to eat simple, quite plain meals. I am really proud of my achievement and when l went back to see my regular GP and told him l was off the Nexium, he was absolutely amazed and genuinely happy for me. A few months earlier he had gotten a special authorisation for the high dose Nexium scripts for me and now l was in his office not needing the drug.

If you are determined and empower yourself with knowledge, many wonderful things are possible. There are often roadblocks on your journey to wellness, but these are the very things that can make us stronger or steer us in a new more exciting direction.

I wrote this post quite a few months ago and am now symptom free and feeling great. It is possible to get your digestive tract back on track but l think it is scary how close l came to having surgery on my oesophagus that would have been irreversible. It sends shivers up my spine to think of how ill l would be now if l had not changed my diet and lifestyle and found a wonderful Holistic General Practitioner who showed me a different type of health care. I had to have a colonoscopy about a month ago and mentioned to the gastroenterologist that l was no longer taking the Nexium, was symptom free and feeling great. He is quite a nice man but he looked at me like l was an alien and then just said that was good. I was and am very proud of my achievement.

If you enjoyed this post please share it with a friend. I share my daily cooking and wellness tips on Facebook at Holistic Wellness For Life and on Twitter vie Holistic Wellness@carolynlgray

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