What you’re about to read is just a summarized version of my illness. This is not a treatment designed for anyone, but a list of steps I took for healing myself (at my own risk). Please always consult your doctor before treating any illness or condition.
I always thought I had a strong digestive system. Back in the day it was really hard for me to get sick on my stomach. During the first 24 years of my life, I never knew what heartburn or slow digestion felt.
Until one day I god diagnosed with GERD (gastroesophageal acid reflux). Yup, just like that.
It took me months to admit I had a problem and that I needed to go to the doctor. When I finally did it, I have already gone through a lot and wished nothing but to be the person that I was before. Believe it or not GERD can make you feel very miserable.
Now I needed to deal with the idea that I actually had a problem in my stomach and probably needed to depend on antacids for the rest of my life. So everything felt like a slap on my face.
I still went ahead with the treatment because I didn’t know any other options at that time. Slowly I started having a normal life again. However, I was still refusing to accept the idea that GERD was a condition I needed to deal with for the rest of my life.
So I started paying attention to the food I was eating and how it made me feel. I discovered that dairy was triggering my symptoms. By that time, I was consuming milk in large quantities (in my multiple cups of coffees and bowls of cereal). I remember it was whole milk because I liked that flavor better. So I decided to cut off milk completely out of my diet, and it really made me feel better.
After one month, the symptoms came back. I was frustrated and deep down knew that one Prilosec every morning was not the solution for me. So one night I started doing my research on naturopath medicine, and I came across this video from Montreal Healthy Girl.
I was incredibly surprised on how she was describing exactly my symptoms (as nobody did ever before). I thought she must know what she’s talking about as she is able to exactly comprehend GERD. By the next day, I decided to stop my Prilosec treatment and start my journey on properly healing my condition. These are some of the steps I’ve been taking on my healing journey:
1. Healing my stomach acid.
This was basically the first step I took towards healing my acid reflux naturally. This video from Dr. Axe was very informative to me. I started with two tablespoons of apple cider mixed with a cup of water everyday, and immediately started noticing a HUGE difference.
I also started taking other supplements like HcI with pepsin and digestive enzymes. I strongly recommend you to not auto medicate yourself with the HcI with pepsin. I took my chances, but I’ve heard it is a complex supplement and you definitely need to be under supervision for using it.
2. Intermittent fasting.
I know this is a very controversial topic. Traditional medicine will tell you that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, because you need to activate your metabolism and all of that. But seriously, I had days where I did not have the minimum desire of eating in the morning. So I just didn’t eat until lunch time. I noticed my digestion improved way much more during those day.
I only did that for a couple of weeks or so, and I seriously think that fasting contributed to my healing process. After doing that intuitively, I found that intuitive eating is a good way to let your digestive system rest and heal by itself.
However, I don’t think Intermittent fasting is a lifestyle I can adopt on regular daily basis. Due to my running routine, I wake up genuinely hungry and in need on some calories. The sole idea on spending multiples hours with no food after waking up is something that doesn’t click for me anymore. But it certainly worked when I felt like I needed to heal.
3. Eliminating snacks.
Once again, traditional medicine will treat patients with GERD condition very different that what I’ve done to heal mine. When I went to the hospital, they told me I needed to divide my meals into six smaller meals everyday. Big mistake. My stomach hadn’t digest one meal when I was already eating the next one.
Basing myself on my experience with intermittent fasting and long hours with no food, I reduced my meals from 6 to 3. On the days I run (which are the majority) I would go for a snack before training, which makes it 4 meals a day.
This lifestyle change made things way easier for me. I eat until I’m satisfied, and then I don’t have to worry again for food in many hours. By the time my next meal comes, I have digested my food and I’m hungry enough to actually eat.
Many people would say that I’m slowing down my metabolism. But the truth is that I’ve lost almost 6 pounds since I started doing it. I feel like I have enough energy to exercise. Concentration throughout the day has also increased, and my hair started growing up stronger.
I don’t think I will be ever coming back to eat 6 meals a day. Unless…you know, I’m constantly hungry due to a long distance race.
4. Paying attention to my emotions.
One day everything was going fine in terms of everything I just mentioned. But then the symptoms started once again. I started wondering what was going on. Why would I feel bad if I was really doing everything to heal myself? and then realized I was upset.
I was upset and stressed about things I just simply cannot control. Then suddenly everything started to make sense. Every time I felt sick it was during difficult times. If we go back to my trip to San Franciso (and the weeks before), I was so stressed that I even got sleep problems.
So I had to do the unthinkable: surrender to the things I cannot control.
Symptoms still come back occasionally, but nothing compared to what it was before. Nowadays I’m happier and healthier. I still drink apple cider vinegar everyday. I eat less snacks. I’m more conscious about my emotions. And diary, well…I still try to keep it low as it really helps my skin.
Today I’m very happy I came across these resources that have helped me feel way better.
Thanks for reading!
Have you ever followed naturopath medicine?