Everything you wanted to know about Stomach Acid

      Everything you wanted to know about Stomach Acid

      01 Jan 2020

      Healthy Eating

      You probably already know that our stomachs contain acid.

      But let's have a closer look at the role of the stomach and stomach acid in the digestive process, and how excess acid can potentially be the cause of a health-related problem.

      Gaviscon India | Healthy Eating

      The stomach is part of our digestive system. Once food enters the mouth, the digestive process begins.

      What happens in the stomach?

      The stomach is part of our digestive system. Once food enters the mouth, the digestive process begins. Teeth break food into smaller pieces, making it easier for us to swallow for further digestion. The saliva in your mouth also begins to digest the food. Then the food passes down the food pipe - the oesophagus. When a ring of muscle (sphincter) at the bottom of the food pipe opens, the food goes down into our stomachs.

      Your stomach is basically a big bag. It contains hydrochloric acid that has three main functions. The first function is to help to kill bacteria that may be in our food. The second is to break down our food. The third function is to create the right conditions for a stomach enzyme, called pepsin, to work. The movement, or churning, of the stomach, together with the action of acid and enzymes, breaks the food down into a liquid. The nutrients in the liquid can then be extracted further down our digestive systems from our intestines.

      Can stomach acid cause any problems?

      Although the role of stomach acids is very important, it may potentially cause problems on occasions, for instance, if there is excess acid, and/or if the acid passes out of the stomach upwards (refluxes) into the food pipe. These are the problems that can be caused by too much stomach acid or reflux:

      • The lining of the food pipe (oesophagus) is not designed to withstand too much stomach acid
      • Pain can result if acid meets the lining of the food pipe
      • A weak sphincter, excess acid or a very full stomach can all increase the chances of acid passing up (refluxing) into the food pipe
      • Excess acid may also irritate the stomach lining or the top part of the small intestine (duodenum) and cause pain or discomfort.
      • The pain can develop into heartburn and/or indigestion.

      What can you do if the symptoms of stomach acid affect you?

      There are a number of ways, such as lifestyle and dietary changes, to help prevent the pain caused by stomach acids. However, if you are affected by stomach acid already, there are various medications that can treat an acid-related condition, such as heartburn and indigestion. These range from antacids, which neutralise the acid in your stomach, to alginates which tackle symptoms of acid reflux. However, other treatments may be prescribed by a GP for more severe, persistent indigestion. 

      Why not consider Gaviscon ?

      Gaviscon gets to work instantly and its double action involves neutralising the unwanted, excess acid and also forming a protective barrier, or raft, on the top of your stomach contents.

      This physical barrier helps to keep stomach contents and acid in place.In fact, Gaviscon lasts up to 2X longer vs ordinary antacids. Gaviscon is available across pharmacies and epharmacies over the counter. can be purchased over the counter from pharmacies.

      If you follow the link, you can find out more about Gaviscon. The whole range of products can be found here.