Gastric acid is a substance secreted by the stomach that helps digestion. If you have too much or too little, digestive diseases occur. See how you figure out if gastric acid level is normal.
Too little stomach acid can lead to chronic disease and stomach cancer. Not only hyperacidity leads to heartburn, but also gastric hyperacidity. In such circumstances it is important to realize if your stomach is functioning normally and if is producing enough acid. Visiting the doctor is mandatory if you feel you have digestive problems, but there is a simple method you can do it at home to see if you have enough acid.
The test that estimates stomach acidity
In order to perform this test, you need to mix ¼ teaspoon of baking soda with 150 ml of lukewarm water. Drink the solution obtained in the morning on an empty stomach. Baking soda and stomach acid create a chemical reaction resulting in carbon dioxide. Thus, in a few minutes you should belch to remove the dioxide.
If your stomach produces enough acid, belching should appear in 2 or 3 minutes. You will need to keep an eye on the clock. If you don’t remove carbon dioxide in 5 minutes, you probably have too little stomach acid. For more reliable results, the test should be repeated in 3 consecutive mornings.
Stomach hyperacidity is accompanied by other symptoms, such as bloating, fullness feeling after meals, digestive problems, diarrhea or constipation and allergies to certain foods. Sometimes nausea can occur, brittle nails, fungal infections, acne, anemia and hair loss.
You shouldn’t have too much stomach acid, and the symptoms are similar to those of having too little stomach acid. The most common signs are bloating, flatulence and heartburn. When acid reaches into the esophagus the gastro-esophageal reflux disease occurs, which creates an even greater discomfort for the patient. The patient may face hoarseness and other respiratory problems.