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Does Timing Matter?

Gastroesophageal reflux (GERD) is a fairly common problem that we see in our clinic. This complaint is not at the top of patient’s list of symptoms but when they find out it can be treated without prescription or OTC medications they are elated.

While studying Ayurvedic Medicine I became impressed with their dietary guidelines that were developed over 1000’s of years and are tried and proven. The only other system of medicine that I have seen come close to Ayruvedic’s comprehensiveness is Chinese Medicine. Unfortunately, Western medicine’s dietary guidelines found in the “food pyramid” has very little validity and sustenance.

Ayurvedic medicine promotes lunch as being the largest meal of the day with dinner being light and eaten before 6 pm. If this advice alone were followed many patients would find relief from their GERD. Rather than accepting this common sense approach, Western Medicine felt it necessary to do a study to prove its validity. They had 30 patients with GERD assigned to one of two groups where they either ate a standard* meal either 6 hours or 2 hours prior to going to bed. When they measured the acid exposure from supine acid reflux the 2-hour group was significantly greater.

If following this simple advice does not eliminate the symptoms completely then acupuncture almost always will.

Terry Pfau DO, HMD

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