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When I got diagnosed with mild gastritis (but no H. Pylori) and esophagitis, I looked all over the internet to find what to do. I did not find many accounts of people who have cured themselves successfully and how they did it. So I thought I would write my story once I am cured. Here it is. If you have cured yourself from gastritis too, please share your experience below as well.
Many people ask how long it takes to be cured. At first I started on dexilant for a month but I did not see any improvement. After a month I kept taking dexilant and I started the low acid diet in parallel. I got much better in 2-3 days. After two months on dexilant and one month on the diet, I felt completely good. Then I stopped the dexilant cold turkey and got a lot of pain and acidity back in my stomach. Now I regret I did not take the dexilant a little longer as my stomach was obviously not healed and not strong enough to go through the rebound effect of stopping dexilant. I regret also that I did not stop dexilant slowly taking it every other day for a week, then every three days for a week, .... I felt anxious about taking a medication that has so many side effects taken long term and I wanted to stop immediately, which was not reasonable.
Anyway there I was back at the beginning with stomach pain and acidity day and night. I felt pain related to the esophagitis as well which really scared me. I hesitated to take dexilant again but I decided to try to cure myself the natural way. Below I describe what I did. I got cured in approximately two months, getting slowly better week by week. After two months of natural cures I had no stomach pain anymore and no excess acid, I was able to sleep again, felt like a new healthy (and lighter -- I lost a few pounds) person. However after those two months, I felt that I needed to follow the diet another month for my stomach to get strong and be able to handle a less strict diet.
Most of what I did is summarized in two books which I found very useful:
The first book is "Dropping acid: the reflux diet cookbook & cure" by Jamie Koufman. This is the book I based my diet on. The only disagreements I have with the author regard dairy products that I stopped taking as they make the stomach produce more acid (very clear for me), and the use of ginger, manukka honey and aloe vera which I find too irritating and/or acidic (and I don't feel that they help). Also she does not talk about salt which is known to be irritating for the stomach lining in excess, I felt an improvement when I lowered my intake in salt. I will explain the diet more in details below.
The other book is "Ulcer free! Nature's safe & effective remedy for ulcers" by G. Halpern. I know you may have gastritis and no ulcers but the two conditions are related and what cures one usually cures the other too. I used some of the natural supplements recommended in this book. In particular slippery elm (this one is actually not mentioned in the book) and DGL licorice for stomach pain (coat the interior of the stomach lining), Zinc-Carnosine (reduce inflammation and protects stomach lining - I felt a great improvement after starting to take it especially with acid production at night), and cabbage juice (finished my recovery with this one, after two days I had no stomach pain anymore at night). I describe the supplements more below.
What did not work for me
Mastic gum hurts my stomach. It is supposedly helpful against H. Pylori which I knew I did not have (I had been tested).
Prelief removes the acid in food and stomach very efficiently but causes constipation.
Tums works well for 45 minutes but then there is a rebound effect with the stomach producing more acid.
Manukka honey hurts my stomach (Too acidic, Ph level 4, but maybe also because of the tea tree essential oil in it). It is supposedly helpful against H. Pylori.
Aloe Vera is too acidic (around Ph level 4), and I don't feel it is doing anything positive.
Ginger is irritating and I don't feel it is doing anything positive.
Probiotics helps with digestion but not really for the stomach.
Zantac works very well at removing the acidity but makes me feel dizzy and incredibly tired.
PPI worked very well at removing the acidity and pain in my stomach while I was taking it while doing the diet, but I had a bad rebound effect when I stopped (one must stop slowly by taking it every other day for a while). Also having too low acid in the stomach because of PPI might cause problems in the long term (problems with Calcium and B12 absorption, bacterial infection more likely).
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