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December 2018 • Issue 1
The Many Faces of Heartburn
Heartburn is defined as stomach acid extending up to the esophagus creating burning and discomfort. It is a very prevalent condition, so much so that antacid medication ranks as one of the highest prescribed drugs right next to cholesterol and hypertension medication. There are a variety of symptoms and causes of acid reflux and heartburn according to medical sites. Each person is different. In the clinic, we see at least a quarter of all of our patients have some type of digestive disorder. It is important to have a proper medical check up by an MD to determine what the cause of the heartburn is and what the proper course of action should be.
At the clinic, we believe our body provides us with clues when something is wrong. Joint pains, headaches, fatigue and heartburn are clues that something is off. It is our body’s way of notifying us that something is not right and we should not pay attention. One television commercial for a heartburn medication, shows a man living in an apartment. He is receiving deliveries from a pizza shop, Chinese food and chicken wings. He is rejoicing with music that he can now eat all of this food without consequence due his choice of taking a medication. Should this kind of behavior continue the next body clue this person may develop is a heart attack or diabetes. Not everyone develops heartburn from over doing junk food, but many do. The causes of heartburn may vary. Here are some well documented causes:
Consuming certain food triggers, such as caffeine (tea, coffee), chocolate, spicy foods, fatty or fried foods, citrus fruits and tomatoes, sugar, alcohol, onions and peppers.
An imbalanced diet that focuses more on acidic types of foods, like meat, grains and nuts instead of more alkaline forming foods like fruits and vegetables.
Consuming foods that a person is sensitive or allergic to, such as gluten, dairy products, citrus, eggs, soya or shellfish for example.
Eating high histamine foods, such as dried fruits, cured meats, smoked meats, nuts and so on.
Having an overgrowth of bad bacteria or dysbiosis such as parasites, helicobacter pylori, klebsiella and/or candida albicans.
A lack of beneficial bacteria such as acidophilus.
Ongoing stress causes immunoglobulin IgA to decrease. Secretory immunoglobulin IgA helps maintain the lining of our gut and mucous membranes thus when it decreases one can develop more pain and burning quite easily.
Pregnancy can cause heartburn due to carrying a child. The extra mass creates less space for the stomach and it pushes up the stomach contents. Thus pregnant women often develop heartburn and belching as the baby grows.
A large waistline or beer belly creates the same pressure as in pregnancy.
Use of certain medications such as anxiety medication, antibiotics, antidepressants, blood pressure pills, nitroglycerin and pain relievers such as aspirin, cortisone and non-steroidal anti-inflammatories can cause heartburn. Be sure to check with the doctor should any medication be a trigger for heartburn.
Damage to the esophagus, due to medications or infections.
Low stomach acid or a lack of pancreatic enzymes can actually cause fermentation of food in the stomach and upper intestinal tract, leading to bloating and acidity.
As one can see, not everyone has the same triggers for heartburn. They also are a variety of individualized symptoms for example:
The feeling of a lump or pressure sensation behind their sternum
Sour risings that come up to the throat
Belching after eating
A dry irritating cough that tends to be worse after meals
Burning in the lower stomach
Nausea and vomiting after eating
A sensation that food gets lodged in the throat
Bitter taste in the mouth
Sour or burning risings from the stomach contents when bending over
In the Caruso Clinic, we tailor suit treatments to the individual and assess to determine if there is any underlying cause and then remove that trigger. This requires a bit of investigation through testing. We use a mix of dietary recommendations, nutritional supplements, herbs and homeopathy depending on one’s individual needs.
Certain supplements and herbs are also quite useful for helping to reduce symptoms of acidity such as licorice, digestive enzymes, diamine oxidase, embelica, aloe soccotrina, robinia, slippery elm, glutamine, mastic gum, zinc carnosine and ginger.
Homeopathy is a medicine that is suited to one’s unique symptom picture, so two people suffering with symptoms of heartburn may require different remedies according to their symptoms. Homeopathic medicine in a potency higher than 6CH does not carry any side effects. There are many remedies for symptoms of heartburn but here are a few that are most commonly indicated:
Colubrina is suited to sedentary workaholic types who over indulge in food, alcohol or caffeine. They tend to be constipated, irritable and have stomach pains a few hours after eating.
Lycopodium types tend to be full of wind. They are bloated and flatulent. They also may tend to be constipated and aggravated by beans, cauliflower and other flatulent foods. They may need to unbutton their pants due to bloating. They tend to have reflux that sits in their throat.
Natrum Phos is a tissue salt that is a general remedy beneficial for stomach acid symptoms. It helps with side effects from certain medications such as pain killers and other prescription drugs that trigger heartburn.
As you can see homeopathic medicine is very individualized and two people may get different remedies depending on their unique symptom picture. In an ideal world, everyone would have access to a homeopath, nutritionist and a medical doctor and they don’t disparage the other person’s treatment. This way the patient can have the best of both worlds. In my years of practice, I have treated many people with digestive problems. Often times improving the diet helps considerably. Should that not work, supporting a person with homeopathy and supplements is key. The beauty of homeopathy is that it can work in conjunction with these medications so that the patient can have the best of both worlds to experience their best outcome.
Heather Caruso is a homeopath and holistic nutritionist for the past 20 years in Guelph Ontario. For more information or to book a free get acquainted chat go to
Homeopathic First Aid Kit, Half Price Sale
Today we are jazzed about our clinic having Homeocan's first aid kits on sale until the end of October for $69.75, (regular price is 101.50). This kit contains 19 common remedies for your natural medicine chest. Good for things like acute viruses, sore throats, ear aches, bumps and bruises. Get them while supplies last! In office only.
Please note the clinic will be having holidays on the days listed below. Should you need any refills please give us ample notice.
Dec 24, 25, 26, 31st and Jan 1st, 21st, 22nd and 23rd
Please note we have extended our hours to better serve you. Our office will be open on:
Mon, Tues and Wed from 8am until 7pm.
For product orders, it is still best to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
For appointments, you can book online at www.carusohomeopathy.com or call the office Mon to Fri 8.30am until 5pm to speak with our office support staff.
If you are a new client and have a health concerns book a free get acquainted chat today to learn more about how we can help you. Click here.