The Surprising Connection Between Low Stomach Acid And Optimal Fertility
Oct 12, 2022
Unfortunately we commonly see both men and women on the fertility journey who have been on PPIs (Proton Pump Inhibitors) like Aciphex, Nexium, Prevacid Prilosec and Protonix for multiple years and they are now experiencing even more negative symptoms than before they started the medication.
Shocking? Not to us! Why? Because these antacids are being prescribed for long term use when they are only intended to be used for a maximum of 14 days, not years! What is even worse is how quickly these medications are prescribed without digging deep into missed healing opportunities to address the root of one’s symptoms.
Long term use of PPIs leads to low stomach acid is also referred to as Hypochlorhydria, which means you don’t have enough stomach acid and as a result you can’t digest food properly or absorb its nutrients. This can lead to indigestion, malnutrition, bacterial overgrowth and many other undesired symptoms.
Symptoms of Low Stomach Acid
If you have been using antacids long term to stop the natural production of stomach acid, a number of symptoms may have started to occur, including but not limited to:
- Anxiety and/or Depression
- Autoimmune Diseases, including Hashimoto’s
- Bloating and gas, especially following meals
- Chronic Fatigue
- Food sensitivities
- Leaky Gut
Why Stomach Acid Is So Important
It is vital to restore your stomach acid in order for your body to heal and for you to optimize your overall health, including your fertility. Why? Because stomach acid has many important jobs, including:
- Digesting proteins
- Killing bacteria that can enter the body through food and water
- Neutralizing harmful pathogens
- Aiding in vitamin and mineral absorption
- Signaling to your body when food is ready to move to the small intestine
Transitioning Away from PPIs
As mentioned above, PPIs are only intended to be used for up to 14 days so coming off of them after long term use needs to be gradual and with the assistance of your doctor or a functional practitioner. Just imagine what it would feel like to introduce acid where it hasn’t been for years. It is likely to be uncomfortable. However, your body is strong and wants to heal so it will adapt with some patience and intentional care. If you believe you may have low stomach acid due to prolonged use of PPIs, contact us and discuss a plan to begin transitioning away from them and moving towards replenishing your stomach acid and continue on your healing journey.
Blog by Samantha Coffin – Fertility Coach at Fab Fertile Inc.
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