This is my new life living with Acid Reflux / Gastritis / GERD.
Unexpected things happen all the time. I never thought I’d end up with a problem like Acid Reflux / Gastritis / GERD. It’s taken some time to adjust to my new life but as it continues I find that it’s been a true blessing in disguise. I’m healthier now than I’ve ever been, both physically and emotionally.
About a year ago now my wife had to rush me to the emergency room in San Diego when I seriously thought I was having a severe heart attack, I’m only 28 years old (27 at the time). Pounding sharp pains were stabbing me in the chest. My arms and legs were going numb extremely fast. So fast that when I tried to walk, my knees would lock up. The chest pressure was unbearable. It felt as if a Mack truck had just rolled on top of me. Needless to say, I was having a severe panic attack due to my GERD, not a heart attack (although it’s a proven fact however that GERD attacks mirror heart attacks).
After nearly 5 months of not knowing what was wrong with me and still suffering a lot of the symptoms, I finally found the right doctor to go to. I went Dr. Dean Rider in San Francisco, CA and he finally told me what was up with my body – I had GERD. He discovered this after doing an upper endoscopy with some biopsy samples.
Some people have different symptoms when it comes to Acid Reflux / Gastritis / GERD but here’s a quick list of a few symptoms I had on a daily basis:
- heartburn – light to extreme
- crazy chest pains - these were the worst, some sharp bolts and it was all over the place
- weird abdominal pressure – it’s hard to describe the feeling, it just felt like something was there pressing on my upper abs
- weird chest pressure – like I said, impossible to describe except for a Mack truck rolling over you
- upper abdominal swelling - right underneath my rib cage it was swollen
- numbness in my arms – off and on, resembling a panic / anxiety attack
- hard to breathe while laying down – I’d wake up in the middle of the night gasping for air multiple times
- mood swings – with all this going on to your body how could you not be a little out of it
- sore throat – I felt like I would get this all the time
- light dry cough – this and having to clear my throat a lot
Throughout this blog you are going to hear my refer to Acid Reflux / Gastritis / GERD as kind of the same thing, with reason. They are of the same family, well sort of, and all revolve around Acid Reflux. I actually started with slight heartburn when I was younger. I can only remember one bad Acid Reflux attack when I was in college and it was a very stressful time in my life. It quickly went away after a few weeks and that was that. It was not until years later when I had this bad attack called Gastritis, which is inflammation of the stomach lining. Soon after that, I was diagnosed with GERD, irritation to the lining of the esophagus.
Here’s a nice article explaining the difference between Gastritis and GERD in an easy scientific’ish form. If interested, WebMD goes into more great detail on what exactly is Acid Reflux, what exactly is Gastritis and of course, what exactly is GERD.
There are a few different types of GERD. Check out this description on Livestrong of a few of the types.
So yea, it’s pretty nuts. After not changing anything in my life for a month or so after figuring out what was wrong with me I finally decided to make a change starting with my diet. I tried all types of diets and myths of home remedies. Nothing really worked for me. I quit drinking coffee (I use to drink 2-4 cups a day). No more sodas or sugary drinks of any kind. I said bye bye to pizza and most of my favorite foods, ugh Indian, no more nom nom’n the chicken tikka masala. Now after 3 months of being on a diet that I found works great, not only have I calmed my Acid Reflux / Gastritis / GERD but I’ve also lost 40lbs! I went from 200lbs straight to 160.
Ultimately, I’m hoping this blog does two things. One is to inspire you to calm your Acid Reflux / Gastritis / GERD. The second is to inspire you to shred some pounds in a quick, healthy, delicious way.
The next few posts will be some random thoughts leading up to the actual diet I’ve created and soon I’m going to share my actual diet plan that you too can follow along with. In the meantime, I hope you pick up on some of these things I’ve learned in my journey with this diet.