by: Dr. Craig A. Maxwell
If you’re suffering with chronic gastritis, acid reflux, bloating, or peptic ulcer, there may be an underlying cause of your condition. It’s called helicobacter pylori, a common cause of stomach ulcers.
What is Helicobacter Pylori?
Helicobacter pylori is a bacterium that causes chronic gastritis (intestinal inflammation) and ulcer. It can also cause acid reflux. It is estimated that over 90% of people with peptic ulcers are infected with this bacterium. People with H. pylori in their bodies fall into two categories: Colonized and infected. Colonized patients often do not notice any symptoms, whereas infected patients do.
Helicobacter Pylori Causes
H. pylori lives in the GI tract of up to 30% of the Unites States population, 80% of whom are asymptomatic. The most common cause of H. pylori infection is contaminated food or water or person-to-person contact with saliva, blood, vomit or fecal matter. This infection is sometimes contracted in childhood.
Symptoms of H. Pylori Infection
Symptoms of helicobacter pylori infection can sometimes be difficult to pin down. Since the bacterium is the primary cause of stomach ulcers, this can be a strong indication of H. pylori infection.
- Burning Abdominal Pain
- Frequent Burping
- Sudden Weight Loss
- Chronic Acid Reflux
- Bad Breath
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Constant Hunger
Patients with helicobacter pylori may experience some or all of these symptoms. In addition to clawing abdominal pain and terrible acid reflux, helicobacter pylori can eventually lead to stomach and esophageal cancer.
Four Methods of Diagnosing H. Pylori
Accurate diagnosis is the first step to effective treatment. These are the four most promising methods of diagnosing helicobacter pylori infection.
- Blood Antibody Test
Some blood antibody tests are not the most accurate. The H. pylori blood antibody test from Direct Labs is a very effective blood test for diagnosing this bacterium. It tests for IgG, IgA, and IgM antibodies for more complete and accurate testing.
However, antibodies to H.pylori may remain positive for several months after an H.pylori infection is gone, so it is not the best test for followup after treatment.
- Urea Breath Test
Urea is a chemical made up of nitrogen and carbon and is normally produced by the body from excess waste. In a person without an H. Pylori infection, these nitrogen-containing chemicals are eliminated in the urine.
The test is done by having the patient swallow a small tablet containing urea from an isotope of carbon. Exhaled breath is then collected and examined. Carbon dioxide detection on the breath means the patient is positive for helicobacter pylori infection.
- Stomach Biopsy Test
In a stomach biopsy test, a small piece of your stomach lining is taken during an upper endoscopy (EGD) and examined for the presence of H. pylori. This procedure can be uncomfortable but is quite accurate.
- Stool Antigen Test
A stool antigen test is one of the most accurate methods of detecting H. pylori infection. For my patients, I recommend the H. pylori stool antigen kit from Direct Labs. The test can be taken in the privacy of your own home with results seen within 7-10 business days. To ensure accurate testing, it’s important to not take digestive enzymes, antacids or aspirin during the first two days and prior to and during the collection.
How to Heal H. Pylori and the Drawbacks of Conventional Methods
- Conventional H. Pylori Treatments
Once helicobacter pylori infection is confirmed, most doctors will prescribe two or three antibiotics plus a proton pump inhibitor (PPI) to treat your symptoms. Since no single antibiotic can successfully treat an H. pylori infection, you may have to take several courses of antibiotics over the course of weeks or months to eradicate the infection. This form of therapy eradicates H. pylori about 80-85% of the time. For most, it is a difficult treatment to tolerate.
Another problem with this course of treatment is the antibiotics not only destroy the H. pylori infection but will also destroy many of the healthy bacteria in your gut. It can also leave you open to chronic candida infection and autoimmune-related diseases.
Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) prevent your body from properly producing necessary hydrochloric acid. This will stop stop the pain of GERD, and may allow ulcers to heal, but they do not address the underlying cause. If H. pylori is not completely treated, the symptoms will return.
- Natural H. Pylori Treatments
What Is The Best Way To Get Rid Of Helicobacter Pylori Naturally?
Since conventional H. pylori treatments can cause such unwanted side effects and often do not completely clear the infection, I recommend a more natural approach.
Diamond Nutritionals’ Stomach Support Formula is my recommended treatment for documented H.pylori infection. Stomach Support Formula also contains a blend of other ingredients which kill H. pylori, while soothing the stomach.
For the past 12 years, all of my patients who tested positive in their blood, stool or upper GI tract biopsy for H. pylori were placed on this formula. After only thirty consecutive days of treatment (one capsule twice a day), 95% of patients who tested positive for the infection tested completely negative with no evidence of H.pylori.
For those who have not been successful with traditional triple or quadruple treatment, or who have had H.pylori symptoms for longer than 6 months, I recommend a second month of treatment. After a 2 month treatment, about 98% of my patients test negative for H.pylori.
- What is Mastic Gum Extract? (It’s Great, But Works Much Better When Combined With These)…….
Mastic gum extract, even in small doses, is very effective in killing H. pylori infection. This effective H. pylori remedy comes from the Pistacia Lentiscu tree and has been used for centuries to treat a variety of gastrointestinal disorders. In my experience, it is best taken with a synergistic blend of ingredients which also kill H. pylori and soothe the stomach. This is my four-point program, all in one capsule.
When you’re living with chronic gastritis or ulcer, your digestive system needs serious support. That’s where Diamond Nutritionals’ Stomach Support Formula comes in. In addition to mastic gum extract, this supplement also contains a potent blend of synergistic ingredients designed to sooth your ailing stomach while eliminating the H. pylori infection. It contains bismuth citrate to sooth the mucosal lining of your intestines and promote normal bacterial growth. Zinc carnosine is a complex of zinc and L-carnosine which is very beneficial for stomach health. Berberine sulfate has potent, yet soothing, bacterial-balancing properties.
Helicobacter pylori can wreak havoc with your digestive system and often, so can the conventional methods designed to treat it. With this formula, gastritis and stomach ulcers can be a thing of the past. Get off the antibiotic roller coaster by eliminating the cause of stomach ulcers without destroying your immune system.