Years of bad eating and poor nutrition had weakened my entire digestive system… to the point where I was unable swallow, or even actually absorb the few nutrients that I was taking in!Michael Loguidice
This is my story of how I cured my acid reflux… how I got it… with 1st hand lessons learned about our miraculous bodies! If you suffer from it, then I hope you can learn a few things here. I’ll show you the battle I faced, its ups and downs and how I eventually came out on top. It’s a story about taking action, overcoming ignorance, fears, and going against the crowd.
When I was young I had a very bad idea of what good food was. Pizza, pastas, breads, meats, chips, candies and sodas were the mainstay of my diet. Although I did enjoy salads, they were usually just a side dish, and always loaded with heavy dressings and even bacon or chicken too. There was a McDonald’s very close to my house and was my convenient fall-back option. Sometimes I skipped out from school lunch to make my way over there instead. But it’s hard to even say which is healthier – McD’s might even be an improvement over American public school lunches!
But I also grew up in a generation where it was normal to eat microwaveable foods from a box or can. I even had the misguided idea that using a toaster oven was huge step up from a microwave in cooking and preparing food. Nonetheless, these were the only ways I could prepare any kind of cooked foods. The sophistication of boiling water would come much later and my cooking skills would reach their heights once I added grilling to my routine!
Although I ate many fruits, they lost their appeal to me and couldn’t compete with all the artificial sweets and packaged snacks from convenience and grocery stores. In my university days, I worked in a restaurant and spent roughly 5 years eating all kinds of heavy, greasy foods on a regular basis. The restaurant was well known, so that led me to think I was eating better quality food.
At this point I stepped up from the canned and microwave foods, but I judged food quality based on a restaurant’s reputation and the price. If it was a better price, that might lead me to give it a try.
The Price of Ignorance
So I had been deluding myself all this time and without realizing it, I gained about 40 pounds (18 kg) in 5 years. This also included regular alcoholic binges and other poor lifestyle choices. But my food decisions were based on only a few factors – price, convenience and taste.
Looking back, I had no idea what quality foods were.
Nutritional content wasn’t even on my radar! Fresh, pure, natural, organic, whole foods – these words really had no meaning to me! I chose not to care because I was too busy moving forward with my life.
Soon enough I got the wake-up call and paid the price for this ignorance. When I was 24, I was rushed to the hospital because I thought I was choking. It was pretty foolish, but actually I was just hyperventilating and panicking because a piece of meat was stuck in my throat! No matter what I tried, nothing would budge it loose! Drinking water, trying to vomit, bending over, laying down, etc., nothing worked! Even the doctors couldn’t even help and after several long hours, it eventually passed through by itself!
I made a big deal out of it… it was embarrassing to say the least. The whole time I never considered that I wasn’t choking – if I was I would’ve been dead of course. But this stuck with me.
This was the first time I was aware, but my esophagus had been so badly burned by stomach acid that it was raw and swollen. The esophagus is the tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach. When it becomes inflamed and raw like this, food can’t pass through without difficulty, especially poorly chewed pieces of meat. This is called GERD, or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease. It’s due to stomach acid coming up into the esophagus which causes it to swell and get very narrow, ulcers forms and this can even lead to cancer. Heartburn is also another main symptom (but it’s nothing to do with the heart!).