Natural Remedies For Heartburn, Acid Reflux, and GORD
What is heartburn?
If you have a burning sensation in your chest and a bitter taste in your throat, you might be experiencing a heartburn. Heartburn (胃灼热 in Chinese) is a very common problem. It happens when the content of your stomach moves up to your oesophagus due to indigestion or dyspepsia. Heartburn often gets worse after having a large meal and many women during pregnancy struggle with it. If the condition persists for more than a few weeks, it is called acid reflux disease or GORD (or GERD, for our American cousins).
What are the symptoms of heartburn?
Besides the unpleasant sensation, acid reflux and GORD can have variety of symptoms depending on the severity and stages of each condition. Symptoms may include:
- Feeling of the food stuck in throat, known as “dysphagia”.
- Black or bloody stool
- Dry cough or wheezing
- Chronic sore throat
- Difficulty breathing
- Difficulty swallowing
Whilst there are over-the-counter antacids such as ranitidine and Gaviscon as a quick fix to help with the symptoms of heartburn, traditional Chinese medicine attempts to get to the roots of the problem. It achieves that by looking at the human body as a whole and finding natural ways of tackling the roots of heartburn, acid reflux, and GERD.
How can traditional Chinese medicine help with acid reflux?
From the perspective of traditional Chinese medicine, pancreas, liver, spleen, and gallbladder, they all support stomach’s digestive functions. An imbalance in the harmonious works of these organs can lead to bloating, indigestion and acid reflux. In this traditional method, a doctor will look into the functions of all these important organs to see what the cause of the issue is.
Another important contributing factor to heartburn is stress. Research shows that people suffering from acid reflux feel worse when under stress. According to ancient Chinese medicine stress and anxiety disrupt the flow of life energy known as Chi or Qi. Stagnation of chi is the major cause of indigestion. With the correct diet, healthy lifestyle, and proper care, Chi can be restored and subsequently harmony and peace can be brought to your organs and to your life.
One more factor in acid reflux is what this ancient tradition calls the stomach “fire”. When excessive yang flows into the stomach, it leads into dry stool, fast pulse, and feeling of thirst and hunger. Fiery foods such as coffee and pepper can increase the stomach fire and, in the long run, can create a yin deficiency.
Can acupuncture help with acid reflux?
Acupuncture has been used for millennia to alleviate many ailments. Patients with acid reflux and indigestion problems have widely used acupuncture to reduce their symptoms. New research by Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicine shows that acupuncture can reverse the symptoms of acid reflux, esophagitis and GERD even after medications have failed. Whether you would like to use acupuncture on its own or in conjunction with your treatment, the insertion of needles in correct acupuncture points can strengthen the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) and help you with your acid reflux.
Are there herbal remedies for managing heartburn?
The short and definitive answer is “yes”! There are many natural herbs that can help with heart burn and acid reflux. When combined correctly, these herbs in TCM help bring harmony to the organs and tackle the root of acid reflux and GERD, instead of simply treating the symptoms.
- Chenpi: a traditional sundried tangerine peel, chenpi helps with vomiting, dry dampness, and phlegm, as well as promoting the flow of qi.
- Shan yao: this yin-producing Chinese yam nourishes spleen, lung, and kidney, and tonifies qi.
- Bai Zhu: atractylodes is a natural anti-inflammatory widely employed in Chinese medicine. The plant is utilised for indigestion, bloating, stomach-ache, and diarrhoea.
- Sha ren: the herb resolves dampness and moves qi. Sha ren famously enlivens the spleen and makes the stomach feel in harmony with the rest of the body.
- Ginseng: this potent herb contributes to the flow of the blood, generates mind tranquillity, and restores the circulation of the original chi. It can fend off acid reflux when it is caused by the blockage of chi or by yang deficiency.
If you are suffering from acid reflux, GORD, or other indigestion-related issues make sure to book a free consultation session with one our friendly experts to work out a plan that works best for you. Additionally, you can see our wide range of herbal products and natural remedies for indigestion by visiting our website.
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These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. We can’t guarantee the treatment result, as the symptoms of conditions are unpredictable and vary greatly from person to person. The treatment length and recovery time also varies for individual. Please visit our clinics website: GinSen where a specialists will discuss your condition and provide a consultation, and the treatment will be designed to meet your individual needs.