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GERD Risk Factors that You Should Know About

Jul 4, 2008
Discover in this article what risks may lie in wait for you with this illness :

Although the most common symptom linked with GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) is heartburn, many different factors may be involved including being overweight, pregnant, asthmatic, diabetic, delaying the emptying of stomach contents, connective tissue disorders and hiatal hernias. However, it is the weakening of the lower esophageal sphincter muscle that turns out to be a common factor in most GERD cases.

Here are some other factors increasing the risk levels:

GERD can happen when this protrusion of the stomach is big enough to affect the lower esophageal sphincter muscle. This is the result of a hernia that may be hiatal or diaphragmatic in nature, where part of the stomach distends beyond its normal dimensions to invade the lower chest. Stomach juices flow back into the esophageal channel, resulting in serious heartburn.

GERD can also come from being overweight. Excess weight puts strain on the stomach and the diaphragm that is in between the stomach and the abdomen. This in turn affects the lower esophageal sphincter, which then malfunctions and lets gastric acids flow back to the esophagus and cause heartburn. Avoid GERD therefore by reducing your weight.

Risk factors that come from lifestyle and diet plans:

Lifestyle and diet habits can also have a negative effect. Smoking or drinking or indeed eating to excess will put you in danger of GERD.

Experience also indicates that asthmatic respiratory and coughing problems increase the risk of GERD by boosting the pressure on the stomach. Asthma is also contributes indirectly because the medicaments that are used by doctors to enlarge the air intake also have a laxative effect on the lower esophageal sphincter muscle. This then leads to the back flow of gastric matter up to the esophageal cavity.

The risk is further compounded by the fact that pregnancy boosts production of progesterone, a hormone that acts to relax several muscles, among them the muscle of the lower esophageal sphincter. Pregnancy also puts extra pressure on the stomach. Pregnant women therefore may be at considerably more risk from GERD.

Tackling the risks of GERD:

This is where holistic solutions are much better adapted for results, as they focus in the true causes to arrest or even banish GERD. Although classical medicine attempts to treat GERD, any lasting benefit only comes with a holistic program. Conventional drugs unfortunately do nothing but target the symptoms, without resolving any of the basic, causal elements.

Taking a holistic attitude is therefore crucial in order to treat all aspects involved. GERD is a complex phenomenon and the causes are also numerous, including genetically inherited characteristics, diet habits, lifestyle and even candida infections. This is why the holistic cures are so much more effective for eliminating GERD.
About the Author
Jeff Martin is a certified nutritionist and author of the #1 best-selling e-book, Heartburn No More . For Further Information: Acid Reflux
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