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Many believe that aloe vera, taken orally, can be an effective way of alleviating symptoms of acid reflux. There is some scientific support behind using aloe vera for acid reflux: the Heidelberg stomach acid test has found that aloe vera may be able to inhibit the production of hydrochloric stomach acids, which are the underlying cause behind the acid reflux. Aloe vera might also work in the stomach much as it does on the skin, as a soothing balm that promotes healing. This may be another reason why aloe vera helps acid reflux: it may help heal the loose flap on the esophagus that allows painful acids to escape the stomach and cause reflux.
When taking aloe vera to treat acid reflux, people can either drink it in juice form or in the form of liquid gel capsules. Aloe vera juice is made from the natural gel that aloe vera leaves contain. It's important that the juice does not contain any of the latex that aloe vera leaves contain, as it's known to be a powerful laxative. The gel is extracted from the plant and can then be ingested as is, or mixed with water or some other juice. Many find the flavor of aloe vera to be too bitter by itself, and therefore prefer it mixed in with something more palatable. If one understands the procedure, getting the juice of aloe vera for acid reflux can be made at home, but it may be simpler to buy it at a local health store.
Gel capsules are also available in many health stores as a way of taking aloe vera for acid reflux. Gel capsules often contain the aloe vera chemicals that work as a laxative, so proceed with caution when weighing whether or not to use capsules. Capsules are convenient for their portability, and for sparing people the bitter taste of aloe vera juice.
Aside from preventing the stomach from producing excess stomach acids, using aloe vera as a treatment acid reflux may also help prevent the stomach from regurgitating acidic fluids by coating the stomach. A coating of aloe vera over the stomach may help keep the esophagus in healthy condition, and prevent what acids are in the stomach from causing heartburn.
Pregnant women and those with kidney problems are advised to consult a doctor before using aloe vera for acid reflux, as these conditions may react adversely to the plant’s gel. In fact, anyone suffering from acid reflux ought to consult a doctor before experimenting too heavily with remedies. Acid reflux is often caused by a combination of sleeping habits and one's particular food diet. A medical professional can help pinpoint these root causes and resolve them, whereas aloe vera, and other remedies, may merely help alleviate symptoms without necessarily addressing the underlying issue.
I have tried aloe vera for acid and heartburn, and found it to be somewhat effective. I like that it is natural, because I prefer not to take too many medications. However, I did ask my doctor before taking it, and would recommend that everyone should do the same before taking home remedies for acid reflux. Just because a treatment for acid reflux is natural does not mean that side effects won't occur.
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