Just like other chronic ailments, heartburn is a result of multiple and interlinked causes. Although many popular texts make reference to aspects of lifestyle and eating particular foods, the real reasons underlying heartburn extend to a wider selection of factors with genetic, lifestyle and dietary aspects.
Although people in good health may experience heartburn once per week or less, if heartburn happens twice per week or more, this may indicate a graver medical condition known as acid reflux disease, and also referred to as GERD (Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease). Heartburn can be identified as the sensation of burning or searing in the area of the chest or throat. This feeling often comes after having eaten.
The LES or Lower Esophageal Sphincter should normally only relax to let nutritive elements flow into the digestive system and should not allow stomach contents to move back in the opposite sense. But in a reflux situation, the LES is weakened and digestive contents can move back into the esophagus, damaging esophageal cells in the wall lining and an activating the pain sensors. GERD is the offspring of two physiological malfunctions: the first is excess stomach acidity; and the second is the weakened sphincter (LES), which no longer performs its function correctly as a barrier between the stomach and the esophagus.
As mentioned above, several related factors result in a weakened LES or too high a level of stomach acidity. Amongst these factors are:
1. Genetically inherited characteristics.
2. Lifestyles, where digestion is ruined by habits such as smoking, which preys on the digestion, ambushes the immune system and pushes Candida into replication, which then leads to the problem of acid reflux. Stress from lack of sleep, emotional strain or workaholism also brings forth these problems.
3. Candida infections. Candida is normally present anyway in the human body, including the intestinal and genital areas. In usual circumstances, Candida is balanced by beneficial bacteria and does not harm the body. But under certain conditions Candida microbes grow rapidly and spread. These microbes can then ferment and reflux stomach contents back into the esophagus, where inflammation and damage to the esophageal lining then take place.
4. Diet patterns, ingestion of foods that are fatty or spicy and that weaken the LES, or foods that are hard to digest, can all aggravate existing acid reflux. Similarly, the consistent, frequent ingestion of foods that provoke acid production, such as chocolate, peppermint, citrus fruits and tomatoes, has a similar effect.
Whereas conventional medicine has only a superficial action, limiting any effect to purely the symptoms, a holistic, all-natural program focuses on the basic reasons to put in place the only real secure and workable acid reflux remedy. To halt heartburn and halt its return, the basic contributing factors must be addressed and this is what the holistic principles do.