Popular antacids linked to stomach bleeds

Plop, plop; fizz, fizz.

If you regularly use the over-the-counter antacid Alka-Seltzer “remedy”, you’ll be all too familiar with those two tablets dropping into a glass of water and fizzing up… making treating heartburn or a stomach upset actually seem like fun.

However, if you’re “fizzing” to stop acid reflux before it starts… or to calm down the occasional stomach upset… here’s a new reason to stop.

A new American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warning links antacids like Alka-Seltzer to stomach bleeds – and even death.

And at the top of the “at risk” list? Elderly patients over the age of 60, especially those with a history of stomach ulcers.

According to the FDA, there were 41 cases of SERIOUS BLEEDING directly linked to these over the counter (OTC) antacids between 1969 and 2014 – and ALL of them resulted in hospitalisations. Of those, 21 patients lost so much blood that they required transfusions, which are typically only for MAJOR surgery or for those that suffer severe anaemia.

How can it be that you’re reaching for that Alka-Seltzer to help your stomach issues – and yet your risk for dangerous stomach bleeds INCREASES with the more meds you take?

It’s because the most popular antacids out there – like Alka-Seltzer and many others – are loaded with aspirin.

If you’ve followed recommendations from your doctor, chances are you’re ALREADY on a daily aspirin regimen – but unless you read the label, you might not realize that you’re adding yet ANOTHER dose of it to your day.

In the case of aspirin, more is NOT better. And as you down those fun and fizzy “remedies” to relieve pain and discomfort, you put yourself more at risk. Aspirin has been proven to be detrimental to your gut health.

And it doesn’t stop there. Prolonged aspirin use has also been linked to increased risk of stroke. That’s why I keep a very close watch on my patients taking aspirin, and only keep them on the lowest possible does as long as I’m certain they’re not resistant.

Fortunately, you can calm your upset stomach without making it bleed.

Instead, try chewing gum after a meal – preferably something natural like Xylitol chewing gum that has been shown to actually benefit oral health. It will stimulate more saliva to wash the acid away and relieve your heartburn without drugs.

Or you can try your mother’s trick of mixing a half-teaspoon of baking soda into a glass of water. Though you might have thought this was just an old wives’ tale, like many other real “folk” remedies, it actually works.

Wishing you the best of health,

Dr. Glenn S. Rothfeld
Nutrition & Healing
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Beware of Bleeding Risks with Antacids Containing Aspirin, nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/news/fullstory_159221.html

Aspirin-Containing Heartburn Drugs: FDA Warns of Serious Bleeding Risk, raps.org/Regulatory-Focus/News/2016/06/06/25070/Aspirin-Containing-Heartburn-Drugs-FDA-Warns-of-Serious-Bleeding-Risk/

Double Bubble, snopes.com/business/genius/alka-seltzer.asp

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  1. So what do you take instead of these drugs. I suffer with terrible heartburn and acid reflux and can’t live without these drugs.

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