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What Is Heartburn? The Answer May Not Be What You Think

April 20, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 175

Did you know that 60 million Americans suffer from heartburn at least once a month, and that 15 million Americans suffer from it on a daily basis? And while it's not just confined to Americans - people around the world suffer from heartburn - it is more prevalent here.

So what exactly is heartburn, other than that burning sensation in your chest?

Many people call it heartburn, and some call it acid reflux, and doctors and others in the know call it gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD. This is a condition where stomach contents, sometimes small chunks of undigested food, but more often simple stomach acid, flow back up (reflux) into the esophagus, which as you already know is the "tube" that leads from your mouth to your stomach. When the stomach acid refluxes back up, it irritates the lining of the esophagus, causing that burning sensation that we're all familiar with.

Left untreated, heartburn can be a pretty nasty condition, and more often than not, many people don't take it seriously enough. In fact, long-term exposure to stomach acid can lead to Barrett's esophagus, which can then lead to cancer! Heartburn is far more serious of a problem than many people realize.

Heartburn can take on many symptoms beyond the typical burning sensation in the chest. It can also lead to other digestive problems such as irritable bowel syndrome, a lack of sleep at night, a lack of absorption of essential nutrients from your food, social anxiety, excessive and painful burping, and much more.

Believe it or not, heartburn is not caused by eating too many spicy foods, or by having too much stomach acid, as many people believe. The truth of the matter is that heartburn typically increases in age while stomach acid decreases with age. How can that be explained, then? In actuality, two of the leading causes of heartburn are H. Pylori and Candida, a bacteria overgrowth, and fungal organism respectively. These organisms are actually two of the leading causes of heartburn.

Luckily, there are many natural heartburn remedies that can help reduce the number of these organisms in your digestive system, and with proper diet and lifestyle changes, heartburn can be eradicated completely! Natural remedies are often far more effective than over-the-counter medications which actually make heartburn worse over the long term, thereby requiring you to continue to take the medications. And don't even get me started on the expensive surgical options that often only provide short-term relief and need to be performed again after a number of years!

Now that you can answer the question what is heartburn?, be sure to take a look at The Heartburn Remedies Guide for much more information including details about the true causes of heartburn, and the best ways to naturally eradicate your heartburn pain permanently.

Source: EzineArticles
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