Soul Dipper dropping acid?
You bet…dropping acid reflux!
I’m sick and tired of ridiculous symptoms affecting:
- Nose and sinuses
- Mouth (oral cavity)
- Throat (pharnyx)
- Voice Box (larynx)
- Swallowing tube (esophagus)
- Stomach and upper intestines
- Breathing tube (trachea) and lungs
I thought a monster sinus infection had homesteaded. Either that or I was dying of old age. I’d heard seniors talking about choking – like they were trying to swallow a balloon and I’d begun to experience the same symptom. Plus – I couldn’t stop coughing. Had post nasal drip. Constant throat clearing (especially in the morning). Breathing impairment. Etc. etc.
Off I went to a local Ear, Nose and Throat specialist who told me I was a poster child for acid reflux. I thought he was bonkers and looked for an escape! But he persisted and put my nose in a book written
by two other ENTS: “Dropping Acid:The Reflux Diet Cookbook and Cure”. All my symptoms and more were listed.
“Silent acid reflux” has been the culprit…I seldom have heartburn. This acid has been creeping up into my aerodigestive tract during the night while I sleep.
The authors of the book, Dr.s Jamie Koufmann and Jordan Stern, along with my ENT, warn that the medical profession, generally, has not embraced this growing concern. Doctors understandably hang their professional hats on scientific data sanctioned by familiar sources. Do you see pharmaceuticals peeking around that corner? Nevertheless, these three doctors, alone, already have thousands of success stories in their files.
And the amazing fact? Improvement is immediate with just a few simple steps. I jumped on the suggested clean-up and after one week, I am not constantly clearing my throat. I’m not coughing. No post nasal drip, etc, etc.
To help ourselves live outside of this barrel of acidity, it’s necessary to understand what caused this huge rise in acid reflux symptoms in our nations. The author’s explained:
“In response to an outbreak of botulism in 1973, Congress passed Title 21, a law giving the Food and Drug Administration the power to regulate canned and bottled goods that crossed state lines.”
Then in 1979, in the name of safety, “Good Manufacturing Practices” set higher levels of certain food additives and acidity levels in pre-packaged food to discourage bacterial growth and curtail possible contamination.
Yes, we know about preservatives. However, did you know a regulation named “Title 21” requires the pH to be below 4.6 – low enough to discourage bacteria? It encourages food and beverages to be produced at levels of pH 4.0 and below.
On page 174 of “Dropping Acid”, a quote:
“Acidified foods shall be so manufactured, processed, and packaged that a finished equilibrium pH value of 4.6 or lower is achieved…If the finished equilibrium pH is 4.0 or below, then the measurement of acidity of the final product may be made by any suitable method.” – The US Government Printing Office
With that in mind, consider the fact that a neutral pH level is 7.0. A pH level of 1.0 is very acidic. The normal range of stomach acid is pH 1-4. This works on a logarithmic scale so, for example, pH 4 is TEN times more acidic than pH 5. (4.9 is TWICE as acidic as 5.0)
In other words, here’s the most important point to remember: The lower the acid rating of any food, the bigger the challenge you are giving your body’s ability to deal with all that acid.
“My” ENT suggested some simple steps to reduce the acidity level in my stomach, re-train my brain to produce less acid and live without a myriad of confusing and annoying symptoms. I am on the two week purge so I can clean up and then live with balance. He said:
- Get “Dropping Acid”. (I borrowed from the local library – to see if it’s worth buying for myself.)
- Learn the acidic levels of food/beverages and eat accordingly. (For my 2-week purge or “induction”, I cut out any food with a rating less than pH 5.0. After this “induction”, I will balance the food groups.)
- Raise level of your bed 4″ to 6″ – increasing pillows is not enough. (I now have a foam wedge that inclines me from head to hips.)
- Eat nothing for three hours before bed.
- Wear nothing tight around your waist.
- Use abdominal breathing.
- Lose weight – exercise. (I find I lose automatically when I faithfully eat alkaline foods – i.e. higher pH rating.)
- Eat small meals – up to 6 times a day.
- No nicotine or caffeine and during the “induction”, no alcohol. (None of these are a part of my life so this is easy.)
- No spicy foods or citrus fruits (melons are acceptable during the “induction” stage).
- Include protein and reduce fat intake with each meal.
- Avoid cough drops and mouth wash.
I continued daily use of the Neti Pot to support my body’s adjustment.
In one week, the difference is remarkable.
Be informed, faithful reader. It’s too simple to ignore.
(To help anyone who suffers from acid reflux – the authors are working on an app that will let us shop for our food with fact and confidence. You can read about it on their website.)