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Enjoying Thanksgiving Heartburn-Free, Tips for Avoiding GERD Over the Holidays.

November 23, 2017 | 2:31am

Thanksgiving is one of the holidays that revolves around food and can be challenging for people with gastroesophageal reflux disease, also known as GERD, heartburn or acid reflux.

What is heartburn?  It is the burning, bloated feeling in the chest and sometimes throat that is caused by the leaking of stomach digestive juices containing acid and pepsin (a digestive enzyme that breaks down proteins) into your esophagus (the tube connecting your throat to your stomach) and sometimes this reflux travels up into the throat which can irritate both your throat (larynx) and voice box (pharynx), cause difficult, painful swallowing, and lead to coughing, phlegm and hoarseness. When these symptoms develop in the throat instead of the chest cavity they are referred to as extraesophageal reflux (outside of the esophagus or LPR/ laryngopharyngeal reflux).

It is pepsin that causes most of the tissue damage to the esophagus, throat and voice box because it breaks down the protein structure in our tissues.  When left untreated GERD can lead to Barrett’s syndrome which is pre-cancer of the esophagus.

Though reflux can occur during the day, by standing up, gravity helps keep it somewhat under control but when we lie down at night its much easier for the stomach juices to flow back into the esophagus and start the symptoms discussed above.

If you are often bothered by heartburn and GERD (or possibly LPR) you may take antacid medications to try to control the acid and burning symptoms by using the most popular drugs for this purpose which are known as PPI’s (proton pump inhibitors) these are drugs like Nexium, Prevacid, Prilosec.

It is not healthy to be on these drugs for longer than a month or two yet many people are threatening their health by being on them for much longer periods of time.  These drugs have been shown to:

1.  Increase the risk of early death,

2.  Increase the risk of kidney disease, heart disease, bone fractures, dementia, and infections.

3.  Decrease absorption of important compounds like magnesium, iron and vitamin B-12 to name a few.

So here’s what to do:

1-      Never eat within 2 ½-3 hours of going to bed.

2-      Sleep with your upper back and head raised

3-      Try to sleep as much as possible on your left side – The anatomy of your stomach makes it much more difficult for gastric juices to flow into the esophagus when you are on your left side.

4-      Decrease your use of the PPI’s slowly over 2 weeks and replace with H2 blocker like Zantac or Pepsid if you need relief and wean off those as you proceed with the other recommendations

5-      Don’t eat your next days first meal for at least 15 hours after your last meal from the previous night.  This in essence gives you a 15 hour fast which calms down your digestive symptoms, lowers the risk of reflux, and helps with blood sugar and weight control for added benefit.

6-      Consider adding a forkful of natural sauerkraut during the day. It helps the stomach to maintain healthy acid levels and adds many good bacteria that can offset ingested pathogenic bacteria that can get into the stomach, release gas and cause pressure that can force the gastric juices to reflux into the esophagus.

7-      Eliminate as much sugar as you can from your diet.  In addition to the danger of sugar to your overall health, it has been associated with GERD.  The same applies to processed meats and foods.

8-      Try using ½ teaspoon of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) in ½ glass of warm water for relief. Gargle it your mouth for a few seconds and then swallow it.  If your stomach acid levels are sufficient you should burp in no more than one or two minutes.  Often “too little” stomach acid is the cause of reflux and NOT “too much.”  Even if you have too little acid in your stomach when it refluxes it still burns, so it is the act of refluxing not necessarily that you have too much stomach acid!  In fact too little acid leads to poor control of gas-producing bacteria and the gas pushes the stomach juices into the esophagus.

If you need additional relief during the same day, instead of taking more medicine or another dose of baking soda, try swallowing a glass of 8.8 alkaline water which is sold in supermarkets.  The combo of baking soda and alkaline water works very well together for both GERD and LPR.

9-      If you have LPR symptoms and the above after a month or so hasn’t brough much relief, you can add a ½ teaspoon of sodium alginate to your ½ teaspoon of baking soda in warm water.

Though the sodium alginate does not dissolve too well in water, mix it as best you can, it will be clumpy but swallow it anyway.  The sodium alginate and the baking soda combo form a harmless bridge that covers the stop of your stomach fluids and prevents them from flowing backward into your esophagus.

TIPS TO ENJOY A HEARTBURN FREE THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY

Juicy turkey, savory stuffing, creamy casseroles, and buttery mashed potatoes make the perfect spread for a traditional Thanksgiving table, but if you suffer from GERD, these rich, indulgent foods, can aggravate acid reflux and lead to hours of discomfort long after you’ve put away the leftovers.

The key to enjoying a heartburn-free holiday lies in knowing which foods to choose and which ones to avoid.  Also, eating too much overall or within a short time can trigger reflux,  Here are some tips for a heartburn-friendly Thanksgiving meal:

Choose lean cuts of turkey – Turkey is relatively safe for GERD sufferers, but try to choose cuts of white meat instead of dark, as they contain less fat. You can also limit the fat content by removing the skin and keeping the gravy to a minimum.

Fix mashed potatoes with chicken broth – Mashed potatoes are a Thanksgiving tradition, but when you load them up with butter and sour cream, they become a reflux nightmare. Adding chicken broth to your mashed potatoes gives them a rich flavor without ramping up the fat content.

Season stuffing with herbs – Everyone loves a heaping scoop of warm, savory stuffing, but if it’s seasoned with garlic and onions, it’s likely to cause heartburn. Prepare your stuffing with a variety of freshly chopped herbs instead.

Make casseroles with low-fat ingredients – If your casserole recipe uses a cream soup base, you can instantly make it more heartburn-friendly by using low-fat condensed soup. Look for other ingredients that come in low-fat or fat-free varieties like cream cheese, sour cream and whipping cream.

Skip the alcohol – It may be tempting to indulge in a glass of wine or champagne at dinnertime, but alcohol is a major heartburn trigger. Keep your beverage heartburn-friendly by sticking to water, non-citrus juice or decaffeinated tea. You can still participate in holiday toasts with a glass of sparkling cider or club soda!

Go easy on dessert – It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving dinner without the pumpkin pie, but just one slice has over 300 calories and 14 grams of fat.  Keep the fat content to a minimum by choosing a smaller slice, skipping the whipped cream, and removing the buttery crust from the back portion of your pie.

Have a wonderful and healthy Thanksgiving holiday.

To the Best of Heath,

 

Curt Hendrix, M.S. C.C.N., C.N. S.

 

Avoid Labor Day Migraines – Summer’s Last Hurrah September 2017

September 1, 2017 | 8:30am

MigreLief Long Lasting Migraine Treatment - Non Prescription

Summer doesn’t officially end until midnight September 22 but if you are planning to hit the road for one last fun in the sun hurrah, take safety precautions; tell someone where you are going, wear your seat-belt, stay-well hydrated and avoid Labor Day migraines!

Labor Day the first Monday in September, was first celebrated on September 5, 1882.  It is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It is traditionally marked with parades and other celebrations, and is a time for Americans to take a break from their jobs and honor the historic role that the labor movement played in the creation of the middle class, the rise of living standards and the strength of the country.

Labor Day has also come to represent, for most Americans, the symbolic end of summer.  School starts for most students the day after Labor Day Monday, however many schools have switched to resume in late August.  Nevertheless, for many of us, it is the last hurrah to partake in traditional summer activities, lazy beach and picnic outings, camping trips, and travel away from home.

According to AAA, over 35.5 million Americans traveled at least 50 miles away from home during the 2015 Labor Day weekend and many more are expected to travel this year. Labor Day has also become an important sale weekend for many retailers, many claiming it is second largest sale date only to Christmas season’s Black Friday.  It also marks the beginning of the NFL and college football seasons.  Old school etiquette considers Labor Day the last day of the year when it is fashionable to wear white.  It is believed that this tradition originated long ago, when the high society crowd wore white during their summer vacation getaways and then changed back to dark colors when they returned to the sooty, dusty city.

If you are planning to get out and about, this Labor Day weekend, remember to stay safe and avoid your migraine triggers.   

 

LABOR DAY SAFETY TIPS:

Labor Day weekend is one of the most dangerous and deadly holidays for traveling, according to the National Highway Traffic Administration
Drive safely and be prepared for any type of emergency.  Always keep a first-aid kit in your vehicle.
Let someone know where you are going, the roads you are taking and when you expect to get there and return.
Wear your seatbelts and don’t drink and drive.  Be prepared for sobriety and seatbelt checkpoints

STAY WELL HYDRATED: Keep plenty of water on hand.  Keep a bottle of H20 with you if the weather is hot and you will be outdoors for a considerable amount of time.  If plain water doesn’t interest you, try adding a slice of lemon or lime to your drink.  If you’re going to be exercising, make sure you drink water before, during and after your workout.  Start and end your day with a glass of water.  When you’re feeling hungry, drink water. The sensation of thirst is often confused with hunger.

Avoid heat related illnesses & heat stroke.  Sweating heavily without replacing enough fluids can lead to dehydration or heat cramps. If the body cannot shed enough heat for any reason, there is a risk of heat exhaustion and, in extreme cases, heat stroke – a medical emergency.  Children are particularly vulnerable to heat-related illnesses, because their bodies do not get rid of heat as efficiently as adults’ do. Make sure you know how to prevent, recognize, and treat heat-related illness.

Heat exhaustion is caused by loss of water and salt, often as a result of exercise in hot weather. If it is not treated, it may progress to heat stroke.

Symptoms of heat exhaustion include: Normal or elevated body temperature, although not as high as 40°C (104°F) Profuse sweating – Pale skin – Skin may be cool and moist – Fast, shallow breathing – Fast, weak pulse – Headache – Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea – Dizziness, weakness, or fainting – Heat cramps or Exhaustion.  If you or a child  experience any of these symptoms, move to a shady or air-conditioned area and lie down. Remove extra clothing and sports equipment, if any. Cool down with cold water, fans, or cold towels. If not nauseated or vomiting, drink water, juice, or a sports drink.

 

TIPS TO AVOID END OF SUMMER MIGRAINES

*Drink an 8 ounce glass of water every couple of hours*Bright sunlight can often lead to migraines in photosensitive sufferers so a good pair of polarized sunglasses can really help.*Scents and odors can trigger migraines. Don’t hang around people who smoke and ask those close to you (friends, family, co-workers) to go easy on the cologne of perfume.

*Avoid bight or flickering lights if possible. If you work a lot on a computer use an anti-glare screen/filter.

*Eat healthy snacks every hour or so to prevent drops in blood sugar than can also serve as triggers to migraines.

*Pay attention to prodromal symptoms (symptoms like dizziness, visual or speech impairments) which occur prior to the pain of the migraine striking. Sometimes taking an ibuprofen during this period can prevent the full migraine from occurring.

*Small amounts of caffeine may help with migraine pain, but large amounts will cause more migraines to occur.

*Barometric Pressure Headaches Strategies: Some migraineurs have reported that lying down in a dark room can ward off the pressure headache, but if you are or want to be an outdoor enthusiast, you have to figure out other ways to deal with it.

The good news is that there are gadgets that can help you. If you are one who prefers gadgets over devices and apps, Newspring Power International Company, Ltd. offers a fishing barometer designed to check the barometric pressure at specific locations. The application for migraineurs is that you can set the device for up to six places where you might wish to go for the day, and program it to warn you when a storm is approaching any of those places. If you prefer a PDA (Personal Digital Assistant), there are several smart phones and tablets which have barometric sensors with free apps that will send you alarms when pressure reaches the danger zone for you.”

*Avoid stress. If you are preparing a Labor Day picnic or festivity, remember that after a flurry of activity and preparation, when a person finally has a chance to relax, headaches often set in. The beginning of the weekend or a vacation is a common time for migraines to occur. Take it easy, plan in advance, and just agree with yourself or family members that the number one key to everyone enjoying the time is to relax and be unhurried in everything.

*Don’t forget to take your MigreLief twice a day, once in the a.m. and once in the p.m., to keep blood levels of the beneficial ingredients consistent for optimal results.  Visit MigreLief.US and enter your zip code in the store locator for a MigreLief retail store near you or visit MigreLief.com.

 

Have a wonderful and safe, migraine free Labor Day. Enjoy this delicious and eye-catching salad if you are looking for something new to prepare and serve this weekend and keep cool with frozen grapes.

The perfect low calorie, naturally sweet summer treat!  These frozen bites always stay icy, but not frozen solid. They must be eaten as soon as they are removed from the freezer before they thaw completely.

1. Wash and dry green or red grapes.
2. Place in sealable plastic bag.
3. Keep in freezer for 2 hours or until frozen.
4. Fill a bowl with several ice cubes and place the bag in the bowl to keep cool while you enjoy!

 

FNM_7LayerPastaSalad_048.tif7-layer Salad

Ingredients:
Salt
8 ounces farfalle (about 4 cups)
2 stalks broccoli, cut into florets
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
Juice of 1 lime
Freshly ground pepper
2 avocados, diced
1 12-ounce piece deli ham, diced (about 2 cups) –or substitute with chicken, turkey or garbanzo beans
8 ounces yellow cheddar cheese, shredded
1 small head romaine lettuce, sliced
2 tomatoes, diced

 
Directions:
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente (about 2 minutes less than the label directs), adding the broccoli during the last 4 minutes of cooking. Drain the pasta and broccoli and rinse under cool water; shake off the excess. Remove the broccoli and pat dry.Whisk the mayonnaise, buttermilk, 1/4 cup chives, the parsley, half of the lime juice, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste. Toss the pasta and a few tablespoons of the dressing in a medium bowl.Assemble the salad: Toss the avocados with the remaining lime juice in a large glass serving bowl and season with salt; arrange in an even layer. Top with layers of the ham, broccoli, pasta, cheese, lettuce and tomatoes. Drizzle some of the remaining dressing on top and sprinkle with the remaining 1 tablespoon chives, or cover and refrigerate the salad and dressing separately up to 6 hours.  Bring to room temperature before serving.  (Recipe from Food Network)

Enjoy!

 

HOLIDAY SAVINGS!
$4 OFF Akeso Products:

MigreLief Supplements or Calm & Clever (Stress Reducer-Memory Enhancer)

Labor Day/September 2017 Online Coupon Code:  MIGFREE4
Redeemable at MIGRELIEF.com
Enter coupon code at checkout: MigreLief.com or call 1-800-758-8746 Monday-Friday.
One per customer. May not combine offers.

 

MigreLief Triple Therapy with Puracol™ and Fast Acting MigreLief-NOW…  Recommended for all types of headaches and migraines; chronic, common, classic, hemiplegic, pediatric, transformed, complex, abdominal, acephalgic etc.

 

 

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