by: Dr. Craig A. Maxwell
Stomach ulcers are erosions in the lining of the stomach, duodenum or intestines. If you often experience unusual stomach pain, especially after eating, you may be one of millions of Americans who struggle with one or more ulcers.
Ulcers can cause severe stomach pain and make it difficult to process and assimilate the nutrients from food. If you’re currently taking antibiotics and acid reducers for your stomach pains, it may only be making things worse. This page will help explain the most common cause of stomach ulcers and how to treat them naturally.
Symptoms of Stomach Ulcers
The symptoms of stomach ulcers can vary from person to person and may initially be mistaken for other digestive disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome and acid reflux disease. There are two types of stomach ulcers; gastric and duodenal. Gastric ulcers occur in the stomach while duodenal ulcers occur in the duodenum.
The most common symptoms of stomach ulcers include:
- Throbbing/gnawing stomach pain
- Burning sensation in the stomach
- Upper abdominal pain
- Stomach discomfort after meals (1-3 hours)
- Acid reflux
- Mild nausea
- Blood in stool (severe cases of intestinal bleeding)
Causes of Stomach Ulcers
It may surprise you to know that up to 90% of stomach ulcers are caused by a type of bacterium known as h. pylori. H. pylori infection is usually contracted in childhood and causes chronic intestinal inflammation (gastritis), dyspepsia, and stomach ulcers. While 80% of people infected with h. pylori are asymptomatic, the remaining percent can suffer greatly from the effects of this bacterium. H. pylori infection, if left untreated, can lead to esophageal and stomach cancer.
Other common causes of intestinal ulcer are:
- Chronic use of NSAID pain relievers – Using aspirin and ibuprofen to treat chronic pain can damage the protective lining of the intestines, which can lead to the formation of ulcers.
- Overuse of antibiotics – Antibiotic use can be acceptable in emergency situations but overusing them can also destroy the protective intestinal lining and lead to leaky gut syndrome and peptic ulcers.
- Excessive alcohol consumption – Alcohol increases stomach acid, which can worsen acid reflux and lead to intestinal ulcers.
- Family history – Family history of stomach ulcers is often caused by passing h. pylori infection back and forth.
- Chronic candida infection – Works in conjunction with h. pylori and increases intestinal permeability.
Diagnosing Stomach Ulcers
The first step to treating any type of stomach ulcer is figuring out what’s causing them. For my patients with severe stomach pain and stomach pain after eating, I recommend a specific Direct Labs test to find out if you’re dealing with h. pylori infection.
It’s called the H. Pylori Blood Antibody Test. Some blood antibody tests are ineffective. The H. Pylori blood antibody test from Direct Labs is by far the most effective blood test for diagnosing this bacterium. It tests for IgG, IgA, and IgM antibodies for more complete and accurate testing. For this test, you simply order it online then go to your nearest Direct Lab office for your blood draw. You should get your results back in 7-10 business days!
I also recommend the Doctor’s Data Comprehensive Stool Analysis x 3 DD Kit. It evaluates for parasitic infection, leaky gut syndrome, and candida while measuring dysbiotic bacteria, digestive enzymes, digestion capability, and even a count of all probiotics!
Natural Treatments for Stomach Ulcers
Once you’ve gotten to the root cause of your stomach ulcer, it’s important to implement some natural treatments. This includes making some dietary changes and adding natural healing supplements designed to support your digestive system and soothe an ulcerated digestive tract.
- Dietary Changes
First of all, I strongly recommend you cut the junk out of your diet. This means giving up soda right away. It contains artificial sweeteners such as aspartame and high fructose corn syrup that continually erode your stomach and intestinal lining and make stomach pain much worse. Instead, eat healing foods that are easy on your stomach such as soups, stews, brown rice, oatmeal, steamed organic vegetables, cabbage, organic yogurt, and healthy fats. Coconut oil, butter, and extra virgin olive oil are great examples of healthy fats your body needs to heal and properly digest nutrients from food.
Diamond Nutritionals’ Foundation Vitamins
All Diamond Nutritionals’ products are professional-grade products. The are made in American to the highest standards and contain no dyes or preservatives.
- Vitamin A – 7,500 IU
- Vitamin C – 500 mg
- Vitamin D3 – 500 IU
- Vitamin E – 100 IU
- Vitamin K – 50 mcg
- Thiamine – 25 mg
- Riboflavin – 25 mg
- Niacin – 25 mg
- Vitamin B6 – 38 mg
- Folic Acid – 400 mcg
- Vitamin B12 – 500 mcg
- Biotin – 200 mcg
- Panthothenic Acid – 150 mg
- Calcium – 100 mg
- Iodine – 113 mcg
- Magnesium – 200 mg
- Zinc – 10 mg
- Selenium – 100 mcg
- Copper – 1 mg
- Manganese – 2.5 mg
- Chromium – 200 mcg
- Molybdenum – 25 mcg
- Potassium – 50 mg
- Choline Bitartrate USP – 50 mg
- Inositol – 50 mg
- Mixed Tocopherols – 50 mg
- Lipoic Acid – 25 mg
- N-Acetyl-Cysteine USP – 25 mg
- Rutin – 25 mg
- Lutein – 3 mg
- Boron – 1.5 mg
- Lycopene – 1 mg
- Vanadyl Sulfate Hydrate – 1 mg
Diamond Nutritionals’ Ultra Probiotic Formula
For patients with ulcers and other digestive troubles, I recommend Diamond Nutritionals’ Ultra Probiotic Formula. Unlike other probiotics, which only contain 1 or 2 active cultures in a low-dose capsule, each packet of Ultra Probiotic Formula contains 225 billion CFUs (colony-forming units) complete with six unique probiotic strains to populate your gut fast to boost your immune system and relieve gastrointestinal discomfort.
These strains include lactobacillus plantarum, lactobacillus acidophilus, bifidobacterium lactis, lactobacillus salivarius, lactobacillus casei, and bifidobacterium bifidum.
Diamond Nutritionals’ Digestive Enzyme Formula
It may surprise you to know that acid reflux is a sign of too little acid being produced by the body, not too much. If you’re experiencing stomach pain, dyspepsia, and acid reflux, I recommend adding a digestive aid.
I recommend Diamond Nutritionals’ Digestive Enzyme Formula. Though there are plenty of digestive enzymes on the market, they often contain only one enzyme. Our formula goes many steps further with a proprietary blend of ingredients designed to not only give you the acid balance you need but support your pancreas and blood sugar as well.
These ingredients include:
- Pancreatin – Supports a healthy pancreas and stable blood sugar levels.
- Betaine – Balances stomach acid pH.
- Ox Bile Extract – Improves breakdown of proteins and fats.
- Bromelain – Helps your body better break down protein and assimilate nutrients from food.
- Pepsin – Pepsin improves digestion by increasing bile production.
Diamond Nutritional’s Stomach Support Formula
Patients with h. pylori and stomach ulcers need Diamond Nutritionals’ Stomach Support Formula. It contains zinc carnosine to support the digestive tract and encourage healing. It also contains mastic gum extract to protect the stomach lining and bismuth to inhibit h. pylori growth. The berberine sulfate hydrate contained in this formula also has strong antibacterial properties that inhibit bacterial overgrowth.
Stomach ulcers can be very painful and lead to serious health complications if left untreated. If you’re just used to your stomach hurting when you eat, you don’t have to live with it. Chronic stomach pain is not normal and you have plenty more options besides what you find at the pharmacy. Once you discover what a few dietary changes and some key supplement can do for your health, you’ll be amazed at how much better you feel!
Dr. Maxwell has successfully treated many patients with GI disorders, including ulcers. His goal is to identify and eliminate the root causes(s). Please feel free to call us at 513-741-4404 to schedule a consultation. We will be glad to assist you and answer any questions you may have.