Does It Work Or Make It Worse?

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Does It Work Or Make It Worse?

For a little freshen up, heartburn occurs when stomach acid goes back up the esophagus. "Normally when you swallow, a strip of muscle called the sphincter temporarily opens at the bottom of your esophagus to allow flow into your stomach," says naturopath Jaime Schehr N.D., R.D. "When the sphincter loosens or weakens, stomach acid can flow back into your esophagus and cause a burning sensation." In some cases, people may not have enough acid in their stomachs.

As for apple cider vinegar as a remedy, "the use of ACV for heartburn prevention depends on the source of the heartburn," says Functional Medicine Doctor Elroy Vojdani, M.D., IFMCP.

For example, if someone overproduces stomach acid and has a weak esophageal sphincter, the acid is likely to get into their throat. "So if you bring more acid into this environment, as comes from ACV, the heartburn will get worse," says Vojdani.

For those people who don't make enough stomach acid, "the food will get into the stomach but not completely broken down," writes Clinical Nutritionist Brooke Scheller, DCN, M.S., CNS, for mbg. "This leads to fermentation and gas production that feels like too much acid but is actually due to not having enough."

If someone has determined, with the help of a GI doctor, that their heartburn is definitely caused by too little acid, the acids in ACV can help. In fact, one dissertation study found, “Although the ingestion of organic vinegar was not statistically significant, it appeared to relieve the symptoms of heartburn in some people. However, the effect only seemed to last for the first 60 to 75 minutes. "

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