Take digestive enzyme supplements to help with digestion. All acid blocking drugs are very short term only. I'll send you a link.
My GERD bible: I studied this like crazy and fixed my GERD, no gerd drugs anymore. First of all you need to know about you general heath, as GERD does not just happen for a reason. Many either health issues contribute to GERD.
I was so bad I could not lay down for more than 2 minutes and acid would flow up my throat. I slept on a recliner for one month, I tried all PPI's none worked but- Ziegered was new then and helped a little. So they said I needed surgery to tight the LES. No way I said, I then learned all about GERD myself. I did not have hatial hernia, so I figured I should try to find the reason.
The body can get stuck in a pattern, its our job to get it unstuck.
What I read about as far as possible reasons:
2) Hatial hernia
3) Just to much acid - partial myth, some reflux is from other digestive disturbances such as:
a) food intolerance's lactose to gluten to just plain grease
b) digestive candida or other bad bacteria (all ages of both genders get this, can be tested with the morning saliva in a cup of water test). Sugar and gluten feed candida in the intestines. Causes bloating, ibs, and gerd.
4) body hormones out of whack, like thyroid
5) Body PH - you are what you eat. Acidic low PH as tested in the morning on PH paper will tell your level. Red meat , sugars are acidic in the stomach.
7) all the above together
In my quest I found D-limonine (natural. google it) to work better than PPI drugs till I found the cure. I used several digestive enzyms also - but no more. Jacked up the bed head 8 inches. Weight and hatial hernia were not my problem.
I tested saliva PH with test paper from a health food place - I was acidic. I was intolerant to lactose and large quantities of gluten at the time. Went on a gluten free and alkalizing diet for 4 months - I got a little better. I tested my morning saliva for candida (other types fall into this test to, there are many). Saliva sunk, it should float as soon as you wake in the morning - I had that to. My cutting out sugar and gluten were helping this too as I tested every morning. Up to this point I was 80% better after 6 months. Stress - unless your a millionaire or someone else totally takes care of you, you have stress, not so easy to fix. Good luck there. Body hormones - the remainder 20% for my GERD 'cure', I had hypothyroid for years but docs refused to try different med brands. I went through differnt docs and thyroid meds till one worked better. We are there customer, they forget this.
I still sleep with the bed jacked up 4 inches (its lower now). And I dont eat crap, ecsesive red meat or lots of gluten, pasta or grease. More chicken and veggies. No soda or sweets. No ant-acids or drugs for gerd anymore. I'm free!
I hope some of this should help you, possibly cure you - and others suffering from gerd.
Can you tell me what kind of digestive enzymes? I researched it but there are so many my head spins.
Some digestive enzymes are pancreatic enzymes and some are just called digestive enzymes. Unless you are told that you absolutely need to use the pancreatic enzymes there are two reasons why they should be your second choice: One reason is that they are very expensive when compared to ordinary digestive enzymes. The other reason that I have found from prior experience is that they have a return after taste when they make you burp. There are certainly appropriate reasons for using the pancreatic enzymes, if the naturopath suggests it and all, or you're dealing with issues associated with the pancreas, such as pancreatitis or even pancreatic cancer. Other than that, the more ordinary digestive enzymes that are much more affordable should be the first ones you try. One place you can buy them online is the Swanson Vitamins website. You could just give this kind a try and see if it's the one that works for you. I do know that it is an affordable option.
Vegetable digestive enzymes are recommended over animal enzymes. Enzymes from animal sources (eg: pancreatin, chymotrypsin, ox bile) are most active in the alkaline environment of the small intestine (pH 7.2 - 9.0). This is after the body has already produced enzymes to complete digestion.
Digestive enzymes should contain at a minimum: lipase (digests fats), protease (digests proteins), amalyse (digests carbohydrates). Some brands are better than others of course so it may be trial and error.
Besides digestive enzymes, there is betaine HCI with pepsin. This ingredient can be in found in enzyme formulas or purchased separately. This helps with stomach acid production. Enzymes may be all that is needed however. If you break down your food enough, you don't need so much stomach acid. If you find enzymes are just not enough, you can trial betaine HCI with pepsin. The old fashioned remedy to help with low stomach acid is apple cider vinegar.
"The popular belief is that acid reflux is due to an excessive amount of hydrochloric acid in the stomach. New science has revealed that this is not the case. GERD is most often caused by too little hydrochloric acid being secreted by the stomach.
During digestion the stomach secretes acid to lower its pH to around 1.5-2.5 range. More protein in the meal results in a greater need for stomach acid. Individuals with non-obstructive acid reflux are often not able to get their pH low enough. The LES is known to be a pH sensitive valve that initiates closure when pH drops under 3.0. When the stomach does not have enough acid, the LES remains open and acid can spill into the esophageal region and damage the tissue."
My mother suffered 5 years of severe GERD and LPR and 25 years of gastritis. Now suffers no GERD or LPR (within weeks both conditions went away) and 95% improved with gastritis (over a year so far). Proteases help repair damaged tissue.
Brands my mother takes -
Nature's Sunshine Protein Digestive Aid which contains betaine HCI with pepsin.
Dr Sandra Cabot's Digestive Enzymes (previously taking for over a year)
Vegetarian Digestive Enzymes by Metagenics (currently taking). Prefers this brand but both enzyme supplements work well. This brand can only be given by a naturopath directly; not on the shelf.
She takes the digestive enzymes supplements with every meal and adds betaine HCI with pepsin supplements when the meal contains larger amounts of protein.
Thank you for your very helpful answers!