Constipation? Tummy Aches? Diarrhea? Do You Wonder Why?

Do you struggle with digestion of your food? Do you find yourself clutching your stomach at the end of a meal because of cramping and bloating? Do you feel nauseous or suffer from diarrhea? If you said “yes” to any of these questions, you might be struggling with the effects of low levels of hydrochloric acid (known as HCL) in your stomach acid. HCL is responsible for breaking down and digesting the food that you eat.  

Gastric acid is normally produced within your stomach lining, which is specially formed to be resistant against the powerful acid. This acid is largely made up of hydrochloric acid that has a very low pH. The presence of hydrochloric acid makes it possible to break down proteins and absorb nutrients from the food you eat.1 HCL is also a critical part of your immune system, keeping infections and diseases at bay.  

However, it is possible to be deficient of hydrochloric acid, a condition referred to as hypochlorhydria.2 This condition makes digesting proteins and other foods very difficult and can lead to symptoms such as nausea, bloating, cramps, or an upset stomach. Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to improve your digestion and find relief from these painful symptoms.  

Foods that are naturally high in zinc, such as nuts, seeds, whole grains, and legumes can help restore proper levels of hydrochloric stomach acid. Additionally, steering clear of processed foods and white sugar as well as fatty and fried foods can help improve your digestive process. Fill your diet with organic fruits, vegetables, and fermented foods to help keep your stomach acid and gut bacteria healthy and thriving.3  

In fact, if you struggle with digestive issues, fermented foods may be some of the best additions to your diet. Fermentation is a natural process that converts yeast and bacteria into alcohols or acids. These acids in particular can help to restore the balance of beneficial bacteria in the gut and alleviate some digestive problems. In addition, fermented foods can help with common digestive concerns such as diarrhea, bloating, gas, constipation, and stomach cramping.4 Enjoy making your own fermented pickles or try making a fermented nut sauce. The possibilities for making fermented foods is endless.  

In addition, hydrochloric acid supplements in the form of betaine hydrochloride are an excellent boost for improved gastric acid production. When selecting an HCL formula, please be sure to choose a high-quality supplement from a reputable company that you can trust. Your gut will thank you! 

Resources

  1. “The Role of Hydrochloric Acid in Aiding Digestion.” Integrative Therapeutics, LLC, 29 Aug. 2016, www.integrativepro.com/Resources/Integrative-Blog/2016/The-Role-of-Hydrochloric-Acid-in-Aiding-Digestion.  
  2. “The Role of HCL In Gastric Function And Health.” Clinical Education, www.clinicaleducation.org/resources/reviews/the-role-of-hcl-in-gastric-function-and-health/. 
  3. “What Foods Are High in Hydrochloric Acid?” LIVESTRONG.COM, Leaf Group, www.livestrong.com/article/292143-what-foods-are-high-in-hydrochloric-acid/
  4. Coyle, Daisy. “Food Fermentation: Benefits, Safety, Food List, and More.” Healthline, Healthline Media, www.healthline.com/nutrition/fermentation#benefits.