Is Milk Really Good For Fighting Heartburn?

For quite some time now, health experts and dietitians continue to be in the process of proving the benefits of drinking milk as an aid to treating heartburn and acid reflux or even GERD.

Numerous authors of health books and journals have claimed that lactose and lactic acids, which are the components present in milk, aggravate acid production thus causing abdominal cramping and pain. This is certainly not an ideal condition in people who are suffering from digestive disorders.  After all, who would want to suffer even more pain during heartburn if he or she is already in distress?

Due to this, we question, is drinking milk really bad when you are suffering from heartburn?

The benefits you can get when drinking milk are numerous. It contains some of the chief minerals required for the body. These are calcium, phosphorus, iron, and iodine. We all need more of these as opposed to the other minerals because they give our bodies the adequate ability to function normally. Accustomed as we are to thinking of large quantities of minerals, it is often difficult for us to realize that such small amounts can really do any good. Yet almost all of those that are present seem to be necessary for smooth working of the body. This is why milk should be incorporated in our daily diets to attain the four mentioned minerals.

Calcium, as the major mineral present in milk, has a dynamic effect upon both nerves and muscles. If for any reason the calcium in our bodies drops below the safe level, the nerves become extremely irritable. The muscles go into spasm, and cramping pains are felt in various parts of the body. One of the major roles of calcium is its task in making our heart operate in a smooth and regular rhythm. It would likely become very irregular and might even stop beating altogether if our calcium level drops. It also plays an important role in the formation and structure of the bones and it goes hand in hand with phosphorus. Altogether, they keep the bones strong and firm, and make our teeth hard and durable.

Aside from milk one of the greatest providers of calcium can be found in dairy produce, vegetables (the green ones), beans, soy beans, lentils, potatoes, peas and fish. The most easily absorbed form of calcium is that found in cheese, buttermilk, and of course, plain old milk. A diet that is rich in calcium helps to promote growth. It increases one’s vitality and adds vigor to the later years of life. People who have been given adequate amounts of calcium in their youth not only live longer, but they also seem to escape some of the hazards and disabilities of old age.

So why is milk, in spite of all the goodness it can give to our health, a questionable grub in the role it plays to people who are having troubles with digestive disorders?

HeartBurnIs it really bad to drink milk during an episode of heartburn or acid reflux? Or could it really bring relief?

Doctors in the olden days treated gastric ulcers with milk. During acute stages, a liquid diet is given. This consists largely of milk and cream. The liquid diet must be taken every two or three hours at first. After a few days, pureed foods and fruit juices may be added. Some doctors would prefer the patient to drink condensed milk, a type of milk that is viscously prepared with a mixture of sugar. It is the viscous property that is presumed to attract excess acid in the digestive tract.

On the other hand, some doctors would recommend their patients to drink fresh cow’s milk due to its unprocessed concentration which is thought to have more lactic acid and lactose content compared to the pasteurized and commercially produced versions. There are scientific studies and testimonials from patients during the late 70’s that proves the efficacy of milk in reducing the incidence of heartburn.  Unfortunately, modern medicine disagrees with this notion.

Medical doctors today discourage drinking milk as an acid blocker for heartburn and acid indigestion. They claim that milk is a potent acid stimulator and increases the risk of ulcers and indigestion. In addition, milk delays the healing process of ulcers and it promotes ulcer formation because it serves as food for the bacteria Helicobacter pylori (the bacterium that causes peptic ulcers). Milk also has the tendency to encourage acid production causing even more severe heartburn.

This is mainly the reason why researchers are convincing health care practitioners; especially those who are influenced that milk is good to lessen the symptoms in heartburn, that it can never be a supplementary treatment or first aid intervention during such a condition. Furthermore, milk contains fat which is an element that promotes acid production as well.

While others are still skeptical and some may have been persuaded about this, it is imperative to assess carefully if milk can really relieve heartburn. Whether or not you believe the claims, there is always the possibility of acquiring either a positive or negative result. Talk to your physicians first. Read various journals and articles about the subject matter. Understand the needs of your body and incorporate simple preventive measures and/or natural remedies to avoid heartburn. With the right disposition and information, the risk of potentially harming yourself can be avoided.


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