A staggering number of over-the-counter antacids are purchased, in fact, more than $10bn (£8.2bn) worldwide is spent on them every year. In the UK more than 40% of people use them – 2.8 million people reach for the market leader, Rennie, alone.

Antacids are frequently used for mild indigestion, heartburn, bloating, uncomfortable wind, and reflux. Most of us at some time in our lives will have experienced some form of gastric troubles following our over-indulging in food or drink.

However, when these troubles become persistent and daily, individuals will quickly reach for the chalky tablets to help neutralize what they feel is excess acid. If the situation does not resolve, they may be prescribed Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs).

Proton pumps are enzymes in the lining of our stomach that help it make acid to digest food. Medications such as Omeprazole are powerful acid-reducing drugs. PPI drugs target proton pumps in the stomach. These tiny pumps work by secreting acid through certain stomach cells.

PPIs limit the amount of acid the pumps produce. For those who take PPI drugs long-term, side effects can be serious. Proton pump inhibitor side effects include kidney problems, bone fractures, and heart attacks

Healthy levels of stomach acid have a major role in health, hydrochloric acid (HCL) is produced to support the breakdown of our food, especially proteins also plays a role in immunity as it protects us from pathogens, namely bacteria, that are derived from food, drinks or anything that goes into the mouth.

When we reduce or block the production of HCL we can experience nutritional deficiencies as well as increase the risk of bacterial infections, such as Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) that can lead to peptic ulcers and gastric inflammation.

Many nutritionists like myself find that more people experience underactive levels of HCL which is known as hypochlorhydria that in turn can cause insufficient digestion, triggering the fermentation of foods that can lead to the symptoms of bloating, reflux, indigestion, etc. Many of my clients are looking for real solutions to digestive challenges instead of simply masking the symptoms.

One supplement that I recommend is support for gastrointestinal health GASTRAZYME a supplement that contains Vitamin U, Vitamin A, Chlorphyllins (from Mulberry leaf), Gamma Oryzanol (from rice), along with antioxidants Superoxide dismutase and Catalase.

Vitamin U was discovered in cabbage after researchers found that its properties supported healthy gut function and healing in the 1950’s. It is not technically a vitamin as it does not meet the classic definition of a vitamin, it is a derivative of the amino acid methionine and also known as S-Methylmethionine.

It was found to have anti-ulcerogenic factors present in the raw cabbage juice. Vitamin U is also found in other vegetables such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, spinach, and kale. It has received attention over the years mainly because of its successful treatment of peptic ulcers.

I personally find the combination of these nutrients can offer a wide application of use for a variety of gastric complaints. I have seen my clients experience great benefits and relief from gastric inflammation, heartburn, acid reflux, and ulcers and I have also used it to support people’s management of their hiatal hernia.

Due to the high turnover rate of the gastrointestinal mucosa, vitamin A need is significantly increased.

Inadequate vitamin A status has also been correlated with impaired barrier function of the GI tract, as well as mucosal and systemic immune system impairment. Also, 3 proteins – Zonulin-1, Occludin, and Claudin-1 which are important for our epithelial tight junctions to function optimally to maintain intestinal permeability are Vitamin A dependent.

Chlorophyllin is made from chlorophyll, a green pigment present in plants that have antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties and has shown antimutagenic activity Gamma oryzanol is a mixture of naturally occurring plant sterols found in rice bran oil that have gastroprotective activities.

Gastrointestinal issues are increasingly common, acid reflux, heartburn, and indigestion are experienced by so many people that they can even appear as a normal part of living in our modern world.

High inflammatory foods such as gluten, sugar, fizzy drinks, processed meats, dairy, and chronic stress levels can all lead to a breakdown of our gut integrity, further aggravated by inflammation that damages the protective mucosal barrier. This combination can lead to the common gastric symptoms that people experience and reach for the antacids to buffer.

I would not hesitate to recommend BIOTICS RESEARCH GASTRAZYME to support my clients, along with a change in diet and lifestyle to reset gastric function, help reduce inflammation and offer a safe therapeutic intervention.