Today I want to share with you 11 Ways to Naturally Improve Stomach Acid Production as the third part in my stomach acidity series. In case you missed them, part 1 was 33 Ways to Tell If You Have Low Stomach Acid and part 2 was How to Test At Home for Low Stomach Acid, HCL Challenge.
I have already made it clear that stomach acid is essential for optimal digestive health.
The digestive system is 30 feet long and the stomach itself is only a small portion of that.
The stomach is a temporary storage place for food. Only water and alcohol are digested here, which is why you get drunk on an empty stomach. Additionally, HCL is here, which is the only acidic organic in the digestive tract. The HCL kills bacteria and helps break food down so that it can effectively send food on its merry way.
Naturally increasing its production, then, is ideal.
11 Ways to Naturally Improve Stomach Acid Production
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- Add fermented veggies to your diet. You can simply make your own fermented veggies or buy ones such as Bubbies Sauerkraut, Farmhouse Culture, and Kimchi. If you can’t handle the full product, try just the juice, which also helps.
- Use a quality sea salt. Pink Himalayan Salt is my favorite because not only can it help with acid production, it also contains important minerals like magnesium which helps fight high-stress levels (and is great for those recovering from Adrenal Fatigue).
- Explore food combining. Carbohydrates reduce the production of HCL and protein requires HCL to be digested. If you can avoid mixing the two, it could help. (That said, I feel it’s more important to just eat without the extra stress, and if this one will stress you out, skip it.)
- Marinate your meats. You can marinate meats prior to cooking them to help with pre-digestion of them. Using a marinade with lemon, lime, apple cider vinegar, etc. to help your body better digest the protein.
- Chew. Take your time when eating meals. Did you know that digestion begins in the mouth and that you have digestive enzymes there as well? Chew your food slowly so as to break it down as much as possible before it even reaches the stomach.
- Hot vs. cold liquids. Ice water inhibits the production of stomach acid, so avoid drinking it with your meals and instead drink it around meal times. (This is also the reason why I can’t do more than 8 Betaine HCL pills in one sitting – too much cold water.)
- Choose a beverage wisely. Ginger, dandelion root and lemon are all things which naturally increase HCL production. Make your own warm beverage using them (try making a warm version of my lemonade!) or easier yet, try one of these (caffeine-free) teas: Ginger Aid® and/or Roasted Dandelion Root.
- Take Betaine HCL. In addition to the fact that the Betaine HCL Challenge will help determine your current HCL levels, the Betaine HCL pills can also help to increase stomach acid production. Take them in the same way you conducted the challenge. Each time you decrease a pill, you’ll know your stomach acid production is naturally increasing.
- Be calm. Overall stomach acidity levels drop as we become more stressed. Learn to manage stress, especially around meal times when the body’s job is to digest food.
- Eliminate all food sensitivities. Consuming foods on a daily basis that you are sensitive or intolerant to (i.e. wheat, gluten, soy, eggs, corn, preservatives, nightshades, etc.) causes a decrease in stomach acid production. If you’re not sure what these might be, but feel this could be contributing to your problems, consider working 1-on-1 with me. This is my specialty, my passion and where my clients find the most success.
- Apple Cider Vinegar. Add it to your diet wherever you can. You can mix a little in with water prior to all meals or better yet, cook with it. Some recipes: Homemade Apple-Spiced Vinaigrette, Homemade Sweet Sage Dressing, Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Grapes and Walnuts. Bragg Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar is my favorite.
In case you haven’t gathered it yet, I find the digestive system 1,000% fascinating. I live and breathe ways to optimize it since I spent years tearing it down.
For even more, grab The Gutsy Girl’s Bible: an approach to healing the gut.
You will heal. I will help.