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SIBO, low stomach acid

Discussion in 'Gastrointestinal and Urinary' started by Mary, Apr 21, 2015.

  1. Mary

    Mary Senior Member

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    http://modernherbalmedicine.com/articles/small-intestinal-bacterial-overgrowth-(sibo).html

    http://www.foodrenegade.com/hcl-not-just-supplement/

    Baking soda burp test for low HCL:
    On an empty stomach, drink a glass of water (about 8 oz.) into which you have mixed one-quarter teaspoon of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate). See how long it takes you to burp. If you haven't burped in two minutes, your stomach acid production is low.

    Five years ago I had SIBO and my doctor told me to take betaine HCL. It prevents bacterial overgrowth, and it worked. The past year I've slacked off taking it, thinking I didn't need it any more, but it turns out I did (need it). I've restarted the betaine HCL and intestinal problems have retreated again :)
     
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  2. Gondwanaland

    Gondwanaland Senior Member

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    How about pepsin instead of betaine HCl?
     
  3. Mary

    Mary Senior Member

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    I take a product that has both betaine HCL and pepsin. I don't think pepsin alone would do the job, if someone was low in stomach acid. Several years ago I tried taking digestive enzymes alone and didn't see real improvement until I added in HCL. It also helped with recurring gallbladder problems.
     
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  4. PeterPositive

    PeterPositive Senior Member

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    This reminds me I should experiment with betaine HCL once again.

    I have low stomach acid and SIBO but years ago I tried HCL and it was burning my insides, even at a very low dose. At the time I needed tissue healing in my guts and I was uber-sensitive to anything, maybe with the exception of water.

    After high dose zinc, glutamine, vitamin E and B complex I have improved quite a bit, not so much sensitive anymore but still have low HCL.

    I have some Betaine at home. 650mg each tablet, but I want to try a lower dose, just to stay on the safe side.

    Is there any problem with cutting the tablet in half?

    If it works I will try to build it up to the full dose.
    cheers
     
  5. Mary

    Mary Senior Member

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    @PeterPositive - I don't think it would hurt to cut the betaine tablet in half. I know there are certain drugs you're not supposed to cut, but I can't think of any reason why it would hurt to cut plain old betaine HCL in half. I hope it helps you! :thumbsup:
     
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  6. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

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    I haven't seen these tablets but I'd be surprised if it was safe to cut them in half, given that they contain acid. I'd be worried that it might burn your gullet.

    Would it be a good idea to phone a pharmacist?
     
  7. PeterPositive

    PeterPositive Senior Member

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    I have done the test and yes, that's pretty much the effect :)
    Actually the gullet did not burn, I took the tablet at the end of the meal making sure it was not the last thing I ate. So that some water and other food would "push it down" :)

    30m to 1h later I got a clear burning sensations in the right side of the stomach. Not very pleasant but bearable, but also did not help the digestion.

    I'll take a pause and try again in a few days. Sometimes my body just needs time to get used to supplements, other times it just says no. Typically it takes 3-4 trials.
     
  8. Mary

    Mary Senior Member

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    @PeterPositive - I was told to take HCL right before a meal, so it's in the stomach when the food comes down to help digest it. It's possible that taking it after a meal does not work as well so you might try taking right before a meal and see what happens.

    Re splitting the pill - I was thinking it would be like an aspirin which is aspirin all the way through, so no harm in cutting it, though of course I could be wrong.
     
  9. PeterPositive

    PeterPositive Senior Member

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    Interesting, thanks.
    Oddly on the product's bottle they say to take it at the end of the meal.

    I may try the other way around.
     
  10. Gondwanaland

    Gondwanaland Senior Member

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    Is it enteric coated?
     
  11. Mary

    Mary Senior Member

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    @PeterPositive - I just thought of something. You're taking betaine HCL in the form of a tablet and I'm taking capsules. A very brief research indicated that capsules in general break down and are absorbed more quickly than tablets. Tablets are more prone to linger. Perhaps your tablet is not dissolving the way it needs to and that is causing the burning because some of it is remaining undissolved in your stomach.

    This is what I've been taking for several years: http://www.swansonvitamins.com/swanson-premium-hydrochloric-acid-pepsin-250-caps
    I generally take 3 before a meal, sometimes 4 if it's particularly hard to digest.

    A doctor told me that to calculate the dose, to take it up to the point where I began to feel "acidy" and then back off by one.

    I'd very interested to see what would happen if you switched to capsules.
     
  12. WoolPippi

    WoolPippi Senior Member

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    Hi, I take Lamberts HCL tablets and cut them in half and quarts all the time without problem.
    Whole they contain 324 mg HCL which is only half the ammount of your pills. I think you'll do fine on lesser dosage.

    I take them after meals and vary dosage with what and how much I ate. I go by nausea or burning sensation. Nausea is too little pill, burning was too much. I can now predict needed dosage pretty much and it works wonders for my digestion and nutrient uptake. Stool colour indicates good dosage too, dark = bile which is dependent upon stomach acidity.

    Cup of fatty chicken soup = 1 pill
    Half a steak = 3 pills
    Handfull of fries/chips or full fat cream = 1 pill
    Some lettuce with little tuna or a handfull of chips/crisps or one slice of bread = half a pill

    Just make sure you don't keep the cut pill lingering in your mouth, the exposed acid eats away at enamel I feel.
    I rinse with another sip of water afterwards.

    Btw, I only eat one of the foods per meal, I don't mix. So it's soup or lettuce. Bread or tuna. They each require different strongeness of acid. Bread needs weak acid but lots of it. Meat wants strong acid in concentrated fluid.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2015
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  13. PeterPositive

    PeterPositive Senior Member

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    They don't say, but I don't think it is.
    Enteric coating is used for medications that needs protection from stomach HCL. In this case it would be pointless :)
     
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  14. PeterPositive

    PeterPositive Senior Member

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    @Mary @WoolPippi Thanks for the suggestions, I will keep experimenting.
     
  15. South

    South Senior Member

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  16. student

    student Senior Member

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    So maby we- want THE bitters before the meal – plus Bet-HCL shortly (30 min) after… how complicated can this CFS-life get.

    Yes, good post @South: „Taking the HCL capsules 30-60 minutes after the meal is over would send the HCL into the small intestine, which is the first part of the intestine after the stomach - and doing so mimics what a normal person's digestive system does: a normal person's digestion sends a clump of very acidic food out of the stomach and into the first part of the small intestine. There, the pancreas senses acidity and responds by sending enzymes and bicarbonate into the small intestine. Which is a good thing.“ see @South 11th apr ’15 in the other thread. How cute. Does it work well??

    @Peter pos. Breaking mine HCL - in half (with fingers) was possible. I have now difficulty to swallow without food. So mixing it in some food. Thats what I accept well. So – after 6 mounth. What is your regime to take HCL. What worked well for you. Are there NEW experiences - out there?
     
  17. South

    South Senior Member

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    @student - I do take HCL since I made that post, but only after unusually large meals. My reason for not doing so for most other meals is that taking it so often seemed to make my saliva feel acidic on my teeth (despite swallowing the capsule whole), as if it acidified my whole body a bit too much to use it so often.

    But there may be a reason this happens to me: I take the acidic form of vitamin C daily, several times a day, so maybe that's enough acid for typical meals, and perhaps more acid for a typical meal is jut too much for me. (It didn't give me any reflux, though).

    Personally, the effect of the HCL seems the same in my digestion as the effect of some acidic vitamin C, it just feels the same to me after meals. So I do not know if HCL is truely different than other acids in how it affects the pancreas and digestion of food.

    I take vitamin C because it seems to help keep allergies at bay and because I can't eat much fruit, thus don't get that much C in my diet.

    For a week once I even tried the non-acidic form of vitamin C and then also used the HCL, and again, the effect just seemed the same to me as the acidic form of C does (which I take after meals).
     
  18. bertiedog

    bertiedog Senior Member

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    Has anybody else got symptoms of overstimulation from betaine hcl, say 600 mg with meals and maybe 100 with a couple of snacks? I have been feeling this recently and had lots of bad heads too but also been feeling quite stressed at times too (actually I have had a bit of extra stress recently so that might be it but did wonder cos usually I can handle things pretty well).

    Thanks
    Pam
     
  19. Mels

    Mels

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    Pam, I reacted badly to betaine and in my research realised it is a methyl donor; I am very sensitive to supplements that are methyl donors, and wondering if that could be causing your response?

    Good luck!

    Mels
     
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  20. bsw

    bsw w/r/t

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    I found Swedish herbal bitters to be more effective then betaine. Betaine temporally increases acid, whereas Swedish bitters leads to a more permanent solution. (Basically you don't have to take bitters before every meal)

    But if you're just trying to kill off stomach overgrowth, I don't think there will really be a difference.
     
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