Heartburn drugs could seriously harm your kidneys

It’s called “heartburn” for a reason. And if you suffer from it, you know exactly why.

That pain in your throat and chest… the trouble swallowing… the inability to move…the moments during a heartburn attack will make you never want to swallow another piece of food as long as you live.

So it’s not surprising that one of the most prescribed drugs is a class of fast-acting heartburn drugs called proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), marketed under brand names like Prilosec and Nexium.

But while the mainstream once thought that these drugs were safe… according to the latest research, they were dead wrong!

A new study in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology reviewed data for nearly 175,000 people using PPIs and roughly 20,000 using a PPI alternative called histamine H2 receptor blockers.

The researchers found that folks who took PPIs had a 96 PER CENT increased risk of kidney failure over those who used the PPI alternative – just five years after treatments began, with no prior history of PPI use.

PPIs have already been linked to dementia, heart attack, and chronic kidney disease … and a study out of Canada last year showed an association between PPI use and kidney failure in older patients.

Now, this latest study just strengthens that association – and not just in the elderly.

I know it’s tough. When heartburn pain strikes, you just want it to end – fast. And these PPIs are readily available over-the-counter AND often recommended by your conventional doctor.

If you’ve been taking PPIs for a prolonged period of time, you should talk to your doctor about the risks and ask him to check your kidneys to be sure everything is still functioning as it should.

Try to identify the source of your heartburn. Does it occur at certain times of day or night? Or after eating certain foods? Lifestyle changes can sometimes make a world of difference in keeping your acid in your stomach, where it belongs.

If it’s still backing up and burning your throat, here are some natural ways to beat heartburn while keeping your kidneys intact:

• Chew sugar-free gum (made with xylitol) after meals. It will stimulate saliva production in your mouth to help wash acid away, and the xylitol can actually help prevent tooth decay.

• Mix a half teaspoon of baking soda into a glass of filtered water and drink it. The mixture can be very effective in neutralizing acid, and the bubbles may help settle an upset stomach.

• Try natural supplements like peppermint and natural liquorice. Probiotics can also help control acid reflux and settle your stomach in a naturally soothing manner with little or no side effects at all.

Wishing you the best of health,

Dr. Glenn S. Rothfeld
Editor
Nutrition & Healing
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Sources:

Popular medications linked to higher risk of kidney failure, cnn.com/2016/04/14/health/proton-pump-inhibitors-kidney-failure/index.html

Proton pump inhibitors and the risk of acute kidney injury in older patients: a population-based cohort study, cmajopen.ca/content/3/2/E166.short

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