Can you please recommend a natural way to treat GERD for our 14 year old daughter?
Q. Dear Terry, “Can you please recommend a natural way to treat GERD for our 14 year old daughter? Diagnosed by an allergist when she was eight, he put her on a prescription medication once a day. She took this until she was 11, at which time she began having bad stomachaches. I have recently become more interested in alternative healing therapies. I'd appreciate any recommendations you could make!” — Kathy D., Shawano, WI
A. Dear Kathy, I would do the following for your daughter.
When it comes to GERD, I especially like a combination of d-limonene and sea buckthorn oil. This synergistic blend can greatly improve digestive function. Sea buckthorn has been clinically studied for healing ulcers and other gastric lining inflammation, and d-limonene has been studied for GERD. This combination is very soothing to the mucosa of the digestive tract. I would recommend taking 1 softgel of this blend twice daily.
After a few weeks of taking the d-limonene and sea buckthorn oil blend, I would recommend adding a digestive enzyme formula to your daughter’s daily supplement regimen. Supplementing with pancreatin, a natural digestive enzyme complex that provides the enzymes protease, lipase, and amylase, can make all the difference. Pancreatic enzymes simply help the body do what it already does naturally. I recommend taking 1 or 2 tablets of pancreatin with each meal. Make sure that when choosing a formula, you get an undiluted pancreatin supplement. The United States Pharmacopoeia (USP) has set strict definitions for the level of activity – measured by how effectively the enzyme breaks down its targeted nutrient type – for pancreatin. I believe the best results for improving digestion come from full strength, undiluted pancreatin. Less potent pancreatin has often been diluted with salt, lactose or galactose.
Finally, you may also want to consider adding a blend of probiotics and clinically studied, encapsulated DGL. DGL, which stands for “deglycyrrhizinated licorice,” is a special licorice extract that has filtered out glycyrrhizin, a compound in licorice which can raise blood pressure.
DGL helps keep the stomach and intestinal mucosal lining strong and intact. It is also a strong antioxidant, antimicrobial agent, and helps reduce inflammation. When purchasing DGL, make sure to look for a product that contains a special encapsulated DGL extract standardized to contain 3.5% glabridin, with greater than 10% total flavonoids per dose.
For some time it was thought that DGL needed to be chewed to be effective. However, new research involving this special encapsulated extract of DGL has found that because of its high flavonoid content and antioxidant activity, it yields more potent effects than standard DGL extracts. Therefore, it provides benefits at a lower dosage – only two capsules daily (300 mg) are needed versus the usual 3-6 wafers (1,500-3,000 mg).
Terry . . . Naturally