Hyperacidity of the stomach: causes and help

How does acidosis occur? What are the causes of an acidic stomach? If more acidic metabolic waste occurs in the body than can be neutralized and excreted, the organism will become chronically acidic in the long term. The acid-base balance becomes imbalanced and the organism can only work suboptimal. The body now resorts to mechanisms that counteract this imbalance. For example, the body first deposits excess acids in the connective tissue so that they can only be released and excreted when the blood again has sufficient alkaline compounds.

Causes of acidosis

Hyperacidity can have different reasons. These include:

  • Too much acid-forming food (including meat, fish, sausage…)
  • too little base-forming food (including fruit, vegetables,  potatoes …)
  • not enough minerals (including whole grain products,  nuts , vegetables, fruit…)
  • too much stress
  • inflammatory processes
  • medication
  • Too little movement
  • too little fresh air
  • too little liquid

Below we present some of these reasons in more detail.

Improper nutrition as a cause of hyperacidity

However, if there is a prolonged shortage of basic mineral salts and acid pollution continues at the same time, these interim storage facilities will become permanent storage facilities. This can lead to pain, movement and functional restrictions of individual cells or even entire tissue.

In addition, the body then falls back on minerals from its own stocks, e.g. B. on calcium from the bones, which can lead to osteoporosis in the long term. It is a gradual process, sometimes lasting for years. Unfortunately , eating habits that consist of more than 25% acid-forming foods (meat, fish,  cheese , sausage, etc.) are widespread among most people in industrialized nations. This forces an acid load as well as a mineral deficiency of the organism.

Excessive meat consumption means that fruit and vegetable consumption is far too low. Very few follow the recommendation of the German Nutrition Society to eat fruit and/or vegetables 5 times a day. A vicious circle begins: accumulating acids have to be neutralized with basic mineral salts. Mineral salts are missing, the organism becomes acidic.

Other causes of hyperacidity

In the search for the causes of acid overload, one must consider not only nutrition but also breathing and excretion:

  • A lack of exercise in the fresh air impedes the optimal supply of oxygen.
  • A lack of physical exertion in the fresh air prevents the increased exhalation of acids and the increased acid excretion through  sweat .
  • Inadequate fluid intake prevents optimal elimination via the kidneys, but also via the skin (sweating).
  • A disturbed intestinal function or  intestinal flora  also influences the acid-base balance. Any rotting products that may occur can e.g. B. also have an acidifying effect on the organism.
  • Other negative influences on the acid-base balance are stress, inflammatory processes and medication if these are converted into acids before being eliminated from the body.

Beware of acute hyperacidity (acidosis)

So-called acute hyperacidity (acidosis) must be clearly separated from the chronic hyperacidity triggered by the above factors. This is caused by serious illnesses such as B.  Diabetes , triggered and must be treated by a doctor. People who have problems with nutrient absorption in the gastrointestinal tract, cell metabolism, breathing or excretion due to serious illnesses should definitely consult a doctor or naturopath about acid pollution.

In the case of disorders of the intestinal function or intestinal flora, a therapist should also be consulted in order to discuss the exact course of action. The regeneration of the intestinal flora and the compensation of any disturbances should go hand in hand with achieving the acid-base balance.

What to do against hyperacidity?

There are a number of things you can do about dietary acidity. The main pillar is a balanced diet and, if necessary, a change in diet or a dietary supplement. The base-forming foods come from the area of ​​plant-based foods. These include fruit, vegetables, potatoes,  cabbage , lettuce, herbs (including  herbal teas ). Acid-forming foods include meat, fish, sausage, cheese, quark, grain products and sweets. A list of foods ranked by their acidity in urine can be found  here .

The food table reflects only the primary effects on acid-base balance. This means that only the influences that the food has on our organism due to its chemical composition are taken into account.

Food: consider secondary factors

With some foods, especially luxury foods, there are also other effects that can vary from person to person and also depend on the amount. Due to its high potassium content ,  coffee  is one of the base donors in the table. However, it has been shown that drinking coffee has an acidifying effect on the urine. The reason for this could be that coffee – at least in larger quantities – causes a kind of stress reaction that can lead to acid stress.

The information for sugar, jam and honey seems just as contradictory  . These foods do not primarily lead to acid stress. However, too much sweets can have a negative effect on the intestinal flora, which can also contribute to acid stress.

Under no circumstances should you completely avoid foods from the acid-forming group. Valuable vitamins, minerals and proteins are also absorbed with them, without which the organism cannot do. As with many things, the same applies here: It all comes down to balance! In order to compensate for an excess of acid that results from 200 g of beef, the consumption of approx. 250 g of  kohlrabi , 1.6 kg of fresh  peas  or 400 g of cauliflower is necessary.

Help with hyperacidity: 4 tips

There are a number of things you can do about dietary acidity. The main pillar is a change in diet and, if necessary, a dietary supplement. The following basic advice should be observed.

  1. Drink a lot:  Make sure you drink enough fluids. This is about so-called neutral liquids, i.e. not coffee, black tea or alcohol, but  mineral water  or herbal tea.
  2. Movement:  Get moving. A walk in the forest or a short bike ride instead of driving not only optimizes the intake of oxygen, but also promotes the exhalation of carbonic acid in the form of carbon dioxide.
  3. Avoid Stress:  Avoid stress as much as possible. Don’t get angry (be “pissed off”) as often. Instead, think positively and smile more often.
  4. Stimulate acid elimination:  Support acid elimination through the skin, e.g. B. through regular physical exertion and visits to the sauna. Avoid stress here as well (not too intense or hot and not for too long).

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