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Using Orange Peel Extract to Treat Heartburn and GERD

Updated on July 14, 2011

There is good news for those who suffer from heartburn and GERD. Dr. Weiss talks about the seriousness of both of these conditions and how to resolve this problem with a very safe and effective remedy in this month’s issue of “Ask The Doctor.” Heartburn is a common complaint that more than 60 million Americans suffer through at least once a month. Another 25 million suffer from heartburn syndromes every day. Heartburn pain is caused by the splashing of fluids from the stomach in to the lower esophagus (the tube that carries the food from the mouth to the stomach). The stomach in order to digest food secretes hydrochloric acid. Hydrochloric acid is a very strong and corrosive substance. The stomach itself has a special lining to protect it from the strong effects of hydrochloric acid.

However, the end of the esophagus which connects to the stomach, which is called the lower esophagus sphincter (LES), this is the stomachs gatekeeper. The LES uses pressure to open and close. When food travels down the esophagus to the stomach opening the LES opens letting food into the stomach. When the food has been released it closes. If it works properly, it will stay closed through digestion keeping food and hydrochloric acid from leaving the stomach going up the esophagus. Sometime the LES open when it is not supposed to causing hydrochloric acid to rise up into the esophagus and that cause heartburn.

GERD is short for gatroesophageal reflux disease. When someone has GERD they suffer from persistent heartburn. This can be serious overtime, GERD is known to contribute to asthma, pneumonia, hoarseness and chronic cough, and it can even erode teeth. Among the more serious effects of GERD are the risks of developing cancer of the larynx (voice box) and cancer of the pharynx (throat) therefore it is important to take GERD seriously.

There are various factors that contribute to heartburn and GERD. One way we can aid in our digestion is by not consuming very large meals. Smaller meals are much easier to digest and less likely to cause heartburn. Certain foods are also likely to cause heartburn and GERD. One should avoid highly acidic or spicy foods such as: citrus fruits, chocolate, tomatoes or tomato based products, raw onions, garlic, black pepper, and vinegar. I’m not saying we should avoid these foods all together. This is unfortunate, because many of these foods are very beneficial. These foods should only be avoided if you are prone to GERD. One way to be able to achieve a healthy digestion and avoid heartburn is to food combine.

Certain groups are more vulnerable. These include overweight individuals, whose abdominal fat cause greater pressure in the abdomen, pregnant women are another group. More than 25% of pregnant women experience heartburn some time in their pregnancy. Another group that is prone to this are those who have a hiatal hernia.

There are many medications prescribed in the United States to treat both heartburn and GERD. These medicines offer relief, but not without a myriad of side effects. Some of them interfere with vitamin and calcium absorption and they block digestive enzymes. Antacid products often contain sodium bicarbonate, aluminum hydroxide, magnesium hydroxide, calcium carbonate and aluminum phosphate. These ingredients work by neutralizing stomach acid. Hydrochloric acid is vital for proper digestion. A lack of it causes problems, such as having badly digested foods, bacteria growth, and vitamins do not get absorbed. This also causes the stomach to secrete even more acid, and as more acid is produced, even more heartburn follows. This causes what is known as acid rebound.

The stomach becomes more prone to food poisoning as a result of prolonged anti acid use. Antacids also prevent the absorption of many medications including: allopurinol, aspirin salicylates, benzodiazepines, blood thinners, diabetic medicine, iron, phenytoin type drugs, thyroid medications, and ulcer medications, just to list a few. Antacids also impair the production of B12 and calcium absorption. As you can see in the case of antacids it is often better to just live with heartburn. What is one to do?

There are some natural alternatives, one that is very effective. It is called orange peel extract. Scientists believe that orange peel extract works by helping the esophagus peristalsis, moving food through the stomach effectively and efficiently, therefore food doesn’t stay in the esophagus longer than required; this in turn lessens the chance of heartburn developing. Orange peel extract also works as a sufactatant, which is a substance that reduces the surface tension of liquids. What this does is decrease the potential for the fluid to splash up into the esophagus.

Orange peel extract has been studied in several clinical trials. Participants were asked to rate their heartburn for severity and frequency. The participants were given 1000 mg of orange peel extract and were asked to rate the severity of their heartburn after taking the extract. The results were amazing! 90% of participants reported resolution of their heartburn symptoms after only two weeks of taking the orange peel extract. What was even more amazing was that even after they stopped taking the orange peel extract they reported symptom resolution on days 21, 28 and 35. Almost all these heartburn sufferers no longer experience heartburn, thanks to the natural, safe and effective cure.

It is recommend that one take 1000 mgs of orange peel extract every other day for twenty days for effective relief of heartburn and GERD. Look for a product that is standerized for a minimum of 98.5% (highest purity) of d-limonene, a compound found in orange peel extract. Orange peel extract is not only effective but safe as well; however pregnant or nursing women should not take orange peel extract. You should not take orange peel extract if you have an ulcer, because this can cause a burning sensation. Until further studies are done, orange peel extract should not be given to children.

Despite these few words of caution, the benefits are many. Orange peel extract has pronounced cancer prevention activity. It has been determined by research that orange peel extract actually inhibits the way cancer cells divide and grow. A clinical study examined the safety of orange peel extract on cancer patients, and no toxicities were demonstrated in any of the patients. Analysis of their blood levels revealed that the orange peel extract was well absorbed.

If you are one of the millions of American, who suffer from heartburn or GERD consider the natural alternative to prescription or over the counter antacids that only relieve pain temporally while creating even more acid and a host of other problems. Consider taking orange peel extract the safe and gentle alternative.

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    • Internetwriter62 profile imageAUTHOR

      Internetwriter62 

      5 years ago from Marco Island, Florida

      Hello Suez,

      The magazine where I got the information was from a health food retailer so I would imagine you can get this product at either a health food store or online. I have never tried it myself, so I wouldn't know of a specific brand.

    • profile image

      Suez 

      5 years ago

      some info as to where to buy Orange Peel Extract would have been helpful!! :-)

    • Internetwriter62 profile imageAUTHOR

      Internetwriter62 

      8 years ago from Marco Island, Florida

      Thank you drbj. I only heard of orange peel extract recently. Let's just say I owe a debt of gratitude to the many health periodicals I pick up at the health food store, they are a fountain of information. I wish I remember where I saw that one, but I know it came from one of the periodicals I get at the health food store.

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      8 years ago from south Florida

      Hi, IW62 - never heard of orange peel extract as an alternative for treating GERD, but then I learn something new every other minute these days. The only problem is remembering it all.

      Thank you for the well-written research on the subject.

    • Internetwriter62 profile imageAUTHOR

      Internetwriter62 

      8 years ago from Marco Island, Florida

      Thank you Greatlife, it seems they discover new things everyday. I'm glad, because that give us all more alternatives.

    • Greatlife profile image

      Greatlife 

      8 years ago

      I never knew about this benefit of orange peels. WIll give it a try.

    • Internetwriter62 profile imageAUTHOR

      Internetwriter62 

      8 years ago from Marco Island, Florida

      Thank you rebekahElle, the article really did not endorse any product. I'd imagine that if you buy you extract from a very reputable manufacture that adheres to very strict guidelines I'm sure the oranges they would choose would be of a good quality and not have any dyes injected in them.

    • rebekahELLE profile image

      rebekahELLE 

      8 years ago from Tampa Bay

      I am wondering which orange peels they use for the extracts?

      there is research that some Florida orange peels are injected with Citrus Red #2 (food color) to make the peels oranger in color. it is not to be ingested and supposedly does not penetrate the pulp of the orange. hopefully they would not be using those peels. the title caught my attention as I had not heard of this before. interesting hub! :)

    • Internetwriter62 profile imageAUTHOR

      Internetwriter62 

      8 years ago from Marco Island, Florida

      Thank you Michael Shane & Sandyspider, I learned something new to when doing this hub. Its good to know there are alternatives.

    • Sandyspider profile image

      Sandy Mertens 

      8 years ago from Wisconsin, USA

      I learned something new. Thanks.

    • Michael Shane profile image

      Michael Shane 

      8 years ago from Gadsden, Alabama

      Never heard of that one! Thanks!

    • Internetwriter62 profile imageAUTHOR

      Internetwriter62 

      8 years ago from Marco Island, Florida

      Thanks Brie, As you can see there are various natural alternatives to the "remedies" the pharmaceutical companies are trying to push on all of us.

    • Brie Hoffman profile image

      Brie Hoffman 

      8 years ago from Manhattan

      I've used yellow mustard and it works fantastically.

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