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If You Want To Improve Your Overall Health, Take Care Of Your Stomach Acid First

If You Want To Improve Your Overall Health, Take Care Of Your Stomach Acid First

We all have times in our lives when we get unexplained symptoms that come on either gradually or suddenly and many of us choose to ignore them in the hope they’ll just get better, or self-medicate to make them go away. While this can get rid of many short-term ailments, it puts us in the danger of failing to find out the real cause of our health problems.

Getting to the bottom of our health problems is the key to long-term well-being and quality of life. While we may just dismiss symptoms, self-diagnose and tide ourselves over with medicinal cures, there is one common underlying cause to many health problems which is often overlooked and that is having low stomach acid or alkalosis.

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Many symptoms can stem from having alkalosis. Treating this source can potentially clear up many health issues someone may have but are not sure the reasons why they have them.

The Common Misconceptions about Stomach Acid

Stomach acid gets a bad reputation because we are often led to think too much acid in the body is bad. While this is true in many ways, the acid in our stomachs is vital for maintaining healthy digestive systems, breaking down our foods and passing the nutrients into our bodies as well as killing unwanted bacteria and yeast found naturally in the foods we eat. Therefore, it’s crucial for the acid levels to be just right in order to allow ourselves to be at optimal health and this is usually a pH range of approximately 1.5 to 3.0.

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Low Stomach Acid Leads to Indigestion and Heart Burn

Low stomach acid is a phenomenon of the developed world with nearly 90% of Americans producing too little stomach acid for optimal digestion. When alkalosis starts occurring, the hydrogen needed for stomach acid (or hydrochloric acid) starts to become depleted which, in turn, lowers the stomach acid further. Problems such as indigestion or heartburn can be a result of too little stomach acid rather than the common misconception that it’s caused by too much. Alkaline solutions are then used such as popular antacid or heartburn medicine that only adds to the high alkaline levels in the stomach and are a surefire way to continually cause problems for our bodies in maintaining the right pH levels.

Stomach Acid Affects How Well You Can Get Nutrients from Foods

Many people with a nutrient deficiency will understandably assume that they eat insufficient amounts of a certain food group or consume the wrong foods but the true reason could well be they are unable to digest foods properly and get the needed nutrients because of low stomach acid. HCL’s function is to break down the proteins and the essential amino acids and nutrients that the body needs so it makes sense that when the stomach is low on acid it means less nutrient efficiency.

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If You Don’t Maintain Your Stomach Acid At A Healthy Level, These Health Issues May Appear…

There are many health issues that come from the stomach’s inability to process food properly and can cause a domino effect for other areas of the body. These can translate to digestive problems, mental health problems such as depression and feelings of lethargy to other issues such as acne, hair loss in women, osteoporosis, diarrhea, constipation, chronic fatigue, bloating and dry skin.

The Causes of Low Stomach Acid

Apart from over-consumption of antacid or acid blockers as mentioned before, one of the main causes of low stomach acid is high amounts of sugar in the diet. High sugar intake depletes minerals and promotes bad bacteria growth that blocks absorption of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients.

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Eating a poor diet full of processed foods also puts a strain on your stomach acid production, lack of proper vitamins and minerals, stress, drinking too much liquid with meals and candida (high levels of yeast in the digestive tract) can cause low stomach acid in your body.

How Do I Maintain A Good Stomach Acid Level?

Making sure you stick to a good eating routine and following a consistently healthy diet will help support your body in its stomach acid production. Here are some suggestions that you can incorporate into your daily routine that will promote a healthy pH level in the stomach. It’s important to consult a doctor before you drastically change a diet but try following some of these to see if it makes a difference to your health issues.

  • Eliminate refined sugars: these put a strain on the production of acid.
  • Eat unprocessed, organic foods: this allows the body to work with natural foods it can deal with.
  • Avoid drinking too much liquid at meals: this can dilute the stomach acid and make it hard for your food to digest properly.
  • Take a multivitamin: this will go towards helping stomach acid production.
  • Make sure you chew food properly: this helps the digestive enzymes in the mouth to combine with the food and make it digestible-friendly.
  • Avoid overeating and eat smaller meals: this stops the stomach becoming too inundated and putting stress on the stomach acid to do its job.
  • Eat unpasteurised probiotic foods: this promotes good gut bacteria.
  • Add apple cider vinegar to your diet: ACV has a naturally low pH level and will help with acid levels, just don’t go overboard with it!
  • Increase zinc intake: zinc is critical for the production of stomach acid and, to give your body a better chance, consuming more vitamin C, E, B6, and minerals such as magnesium can increase zinc absorption.
  • Avoid snacking in between meals: this allows adequate time for your food to be digested without added stress of more food.

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Jenny Marchal

A passionate writer who loves sharing about positive psychology.

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Last Updated on January 3, 2020

The 10 Essential Habits of Positive People

The 10 Essential Habits of Positive People

Are you waiting for life events to turn out the way you want so that you can feel more positive about your life? Do you find yourself having pre-conditions to your sense of well-being, thinking that certain things must happen for you to be happier? Do you think there is no way that your life stresses can make you anything other than “stressed out” and that other people just don’t understand?  If your answer is “yes” to any of these questions, you might find yourself lingering in the land of negativity for too long!

The following are some tips to keep positive no matter what comes your way. This post will help you stop looking for what psychologists call “positivity” in all the wrong places!  Here are the ten essential habits of positive people.

1. Positive people don’t confuse quitting with letting go.

Instead of hanging on to ideas, beliefs, and even people that are no longer healthy for them, they trust their judgement to let go of negative forces in their lives.  Especially in terms of relationships, they subscribe to The Relationship Prayer which goes:

 I will grant myself the ability to trust the healthy people in my life … 

To set limits with, or let go of, the negative ones … 

And to have the wisdom to know the DIFFERENCE!

 2.  Positive people don’t just have a good day – they make a good day.

Waiting, hoping and wishing seldom have a place in the vocabulary of positive individuals. Rather, they use strong words that are pro-active and not reactive. Passivity leads to a lack of involvement, while positive people get very involved in constructing their lives. They work to make changes to feel better in tough times rather than wish their feelings away.

3. For the positive person, the past stays in the past.

Good and bad memories alike stay where they belong – in the past where they happened. They don’t spend much time pining for the good ol’ days because they are too busy making new memories now. The negative pulls from the past are used not for self-flagellation or unproductive regret, but rather productive regret where they use lessons learned as stepping stones towards a better future.

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4. Show me a positive person and I can show you a grateful person.

The most positive people are the most grateful people.  They do not focus on the potholes of their lives.  They focus on the pot of gold that awaits them every day, with new smells, sights, feelings and experiences.  They see life as a treasure chest full of wonder.

5. Rather than being stuck in their limitations, positive people are energized by their possibilities.

Optimistic people focus on what they can do, not what they can’t do.  They are not fooled to think that there is a perfect solution to every problem, and are confident that there are many solutions and possibilities.  They are not afraid to attempt new solutions to old problems, rather than spin their wheels expecting things to be different this time.  They refuse to be like Charlie Brown expecting that this time Lucy will not pull the football from him!

6. Positive people do not let their fears interfere with their lives!

Positive people have observed that those who are defined and pulled back by their fears never really truly live a full life. While proceeding with appropriate caution, they do not let fear keep them from trying new things. They realize that even failures are necessary steps for a successful life. They have confidence that they can get back up when they are knocked down by life events or their own mistakes, due to a strong belief in their personal resilience.

7. Positive people smile a lot!

When you feel positive on the inside it is like you are smiling from within, and these smiles are contagious. Furthermore, the more others are with positive people, the more they tend to smile too! They see the lightness in life, and have a sense of humor even when it is about themselves. Positive people have a high degree of self-respect, but refuse to take themselves too seriously!

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8. People who are positive are great communicators.

They realize that assertive, confident communication is the only way to connect with others in everyday life.  They avoid judgmental, angry interchanges, and do not let someone else’s blow up give them a reason to react in kind. Rather, they express themselves with tact and finesse.  They also refuse to be non-assertive and let people push them around. They refuse to own problems that belong to someone else.

9. Positive people realize that if you live long enough, there are times for great pain and sadness.

One of the most common misperceptions about positive people is that to be positive, you must always be happy. This can not be further from the truth. Anyone who has any depth at all is certainly not happy all the time.  Being sad, angry, disappointed are all essential emotions in life. How else would you ever develop empathy for others if you lived a life of denial and shallow emotions? Positive people do not run from the gamut of emotions, and accept that part of the healing process is to allow themselves to experience all types of feelings, not only the happy ones. A positive person always holds the hope that there is light at the end of the darkness.  

10. Positive person are empowered people – they refuse to blame others and are not victims in life.

Positive people seek the help and support of others who are supportive and safe.They limit interactions with those who are toxic in any manner, even if it comes to legal action and physical estrangement such as in the case of abuse. They have identified their own basic human rights, and they respect themselves too much to play the part of a victim. There is no place for holding grudges with a positive mindset. Forgiveness helps positive people become better, not bitter.

How about you?  How many habits of positive people do you personally find in yourself?  If you lack even a few of these 10 essential habits, you might find that the expected treasure at the end of the rainbow was not all that it was cracked up to be. How could it — if you keep on bringing a negative attitude around?

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I wish you well in keeping positive, because as we all know, there is certainly nothing positive about being negative!

Featured photo credit: Janaína Castelo Branco via flickr.com

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