My Search for a Solution
By Jim Notto
I began searching for an alternative. I tried “natural” remedies such as licorice root and orange oil; dietary “cures” like apples, shredded carrots, and whole juices. I tried ignoring it; I tried using positive affirmations, prayer and pleading, and even hypnosis. Some of these seemed to work temporarily, although I was always suspicious that I may have been experiencing the placebo effect. I searched for an alternative that would work; and one that would work for the long term, consistently and without negative side effects.
For me, the decision to search for an alternative method of controlling my gastroesophageal reflux disease and acid reflux was automatic. The side effects of the medications were becoming so disruptive to my sense of well-being that I fully committed to finding another means of overcoming the disease. I did something desperate; something that I strongly caution you against doing without your physician’s consent: I went off my medication and allowed the disease to rage full force.
I had decided that, for me, the current treatment was worse than the disease. There were many moments to come in which I was sure I had made a mistake; that the side effects had to be better than the thoroughly disruptive pain of acid reflux; but I persisted.
I established a clear outcome: to have a healthy stomach and esophagus, which felt comfortable all the time. I figured the only way to know if a particular set of influences were providing results was to cease medication and experience the effects of disease. In this manner I could positively be certain if something were alleviating my symptoms.
I began to take careful note of when the symptoms were at their worse, what I was doing, what I had eaten, and any other variable I could notice. I also spent a lot of time researching GERD and any subject I thought may be helpful in overcoming it.