Maag is a common health problem in the community. But unfortunately, there are still many people who take it lightly. Even if you often experience stomach ulcers that can recur more than every week, this digestive disorder risks causing various dangerous complications. That’s why it’s important for you to be able to control stomach acid production to remain stable so that the symptoms of stomach ulcers are not easy to relapse. See the tips here.
Gastric acid is not always dangerous, really!
One of the most typical symptoms of stomach ulcers is an increase in stomach acid. This then triggers chest pain, nausea and sore stomach, hot throat, sour mouth, and often belching. Because the symptoms that appear can make the body weak, many people who continue to misinterpret stomach acid actually harm health.
In fact, the acidic fluid in your stomach plays an important role in helping the digestive organs break down food so that it is easily absorbed by the body. The presence of stomach acid is especially important for absorption of a number of important nutrients such as amino acids, calcium, zinc, and vitamins A, C, E, and vitamin B complex. This liquid also helps the stomach to stimulate special enzymes to digest protein.
In addition, stomach acid works to kill bacteria and germs that cause disease that enter the body through the food you eat.
How do I know my stomach acid is normal?
Normally, stomach acid has a pH level in the range of 1.5-3.5. Abnormalities in gastric acid production can be triggered by various possible conditions. So, the best step to ascertain whether your stomach acid is low or too high is to consult with a doctor and tell all of your symptoms.
While waiting for a doctor’s appointment, you can find out whether your stomach acid is high or low with two simple tests that can be done at home. The first is to eat a few pieces of beetroot and after two hours have passed, go to the toilet and check the condition of your urine. If urine is red, it means your stomach acid is low.
The second test is done by drinking a glass of water which has already been mixed with ¼ teaspoon of baking soda. Drink this mixture in the morning when the stomach is still empty. If you take up to 5 minutes until you can belch, it means that your stomach acid is low. But if you immediately burp less than 2 minutes after drinking it, chances are that your stomach acid is high.
Gastric acid likes to go up and down, increasing the risk of disease
The ups and downs of stomach acid are influenced by your diet and what you eat everyday. Ulcer symptoms tend to be more prone to relapse when you often eat spicy or fatty foods, drink alcoholic beverages, and most fibrous foods.
Acid production in the stomach is influenced by the fat content in protein and sugar from the food we consume. The higher the fat level, the more acidic your pH level is in your stomach. Meanwhile, the more sugar intake causes less stomach acid.
If acidic stomach levels are not normal, either too little or too much, the food cannot be processed properly so the body does not get adequate nutritional intake. This condition will make the body susceptible to infection and fall ill, and can even increase the risk of esophageal cancer. Everyday activities will be disrupted.
Tips to maintain stomach acid production so that the symptoms of stomach ulcers are not easy to recur
Increasing stomach acid can be controlled with some adjustments to a simple lifestyle. The methods below also help the acid produced by your stomach remain in its normal pH range so that it suppresses the chances of recurrence of ulcer symptoms later on.
1 Eat regularly
When the stomach is left empty for a long time, a pool of acidic fluid will cause the stomach wall to become irritated and inflamed. This is what triggers or worsens the symptoms of your stomach.
By applying a regular diet, digestion will work better and more efficiently.
2 Limit intake of refined sugar
Refined sugar is sugar that has gone through a purification process to remove molasses (sugar syrup) so that the color becomes clear white.
This pure sugar is sold as granulated sugar, and is also widely available in packaged foods and beverages. Most consume pure sugar can increase the workload of the stomach when producing stomach acid.
3 Don’t drink a lot while eating
Drinking plenty of water in the middle of a meal will thin the stomach acid so that the food becomes difficult to digest. When the body detects this problem, the brain sends a signal to the stomach to increase the production of its acidic liquid.
4 Eat slowly
Before entering the stomach, the food you consume will first mix with saliva in the mouth to be broken down into a simpler form. The goal is that the nutrients from eating can be more easily absorbed by your body later.
Chewing food slowly makes your food split into a finer form that helps the digestive system work more efficiently to break it down. If the food that enters the stomach is not soft enough, your stomach will work extra hard to digest and absorb all the vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that are important for the body.
So, make it a habit to chew food 32 times so that the food is really soft when it enters the stomach.
5 Sleep sideways to the left
Without realizing it, sleeping position also affects your health. Sleeping sideways to the left is the best position for those of you who have digestive problems such as ulcers.
When you sleep sideways to the left, gravity will keep the stomach contents at the base of the stomach. This position is also ideal for those of you who often get stomach ulcers because the valve muscles that open between the opening of the stomach and the esophagus will remain above the stomach acid in a closed state.
While if you sleep on your right side, the valve muscles can stretch so that gastric fluid can flow back into the esophagus. This can cause recurrence of gastric symptoms. In some people, the symptoms can be severe enough to cause sudden awakening from sleep.
6 Take zinc supplements
If necessary, take zinc supplements which can help the body control stomach acid production. Adequate zinc intake is important for ulcer owners because this mineral is very helpful in the process of producing stomach acid.
Also consume vitamins C, E, B6 and magnesium to increase zinc absorption in the body.
7 Manage stress well
In addition to poor diet, ulcer symptoms can also be recurrent because it is triggered by excessive stress. Stress isn’t really avoidable, but you can control it.
Once stressed, try to stop your activities for a moment and take deep breaths for 10 counts. Hold for a while and release your breath also in 10 slow counts. Repeat several times until you feel more calm.
Apart from the above breathing techniques, there are many other ways to relieve stress. For example by watching comedy movies, listening to music, taking a nap for 20 to 30 minutes, or meditating. In essence, do light things that can make you feel happy.
Insure your health for a better future
Although ulcers include digestive problems that are quite common, it does not mean you then let it. The symptoms that appear are actually the body’s way of saying that there is a problem with your health.
The various methods above can help you control stomach acid so that the symptoms of stomach ulcers are no longer easy to relapse. Remember, it’s always better to prevent than cure.
However, you can also maintain your digestive health in the long term by applying for the right health insurance. Without health insurance, you may not have free access to many non-emergency medical services when you really need them.