I started dieting (this time) in January of this year. I had terrible cravings and problems with low blood sugar.
I started reading books on nutrition, and finally a few clues led me to believe that I might be suffering from low stomach acid. Apparently when the stomach produces insufficient amounts of acid, the problems with digestion are much the same as having too much acid. Here's a link to an article explaining about it: http://altmedicine.about.com/cs/dige...s/a/LowHCL.htm
These are some of the symptoms:
Bloating, belching, and flatulence immediately after meals
Indigestion, diarrhea, or constipation
Soreness, burning or dryness of the mouth
Multiple food allergies
Feeling nauseous after taking supplements
Weak, peeling and cracked fingernails
Redness or dilated blood vessels in the cheeks and nose
Hair loss in women
Undigested food in the stools
Chronic yeast infections
Low tolerance for dentures
Now, I had quite a few of these, but the real clue was the fact that I occasionally have gastric reflux- but it does not burn
my throat. The pH of the stomach should be about 1, but what was coming up was nearly neutral. That is definitely not good.
I started taking the supplement "betaine HCl" and within 2 days, my blood sugar swings had stabilized! That was completely unexpected, but welcome. I guess I wasn't absorbing something
my body needed to keep the blood sugar stable.
I've been taking the supplement for two months now. For the first time in my life, my fingernails are growing in strong. They don't bend backwards any more, or split off. I haven't had an episode of heartburn or other indigestion since starting this, except for the one time I ate some yogurt without taking the betaine.
I can go longer between meals now, and I don't have any terrible cravings. My body is now digesting the food properly, and I'm getting what I need out of the food.
I think part of my overweight problem was caused by this condition. Carbohydrates don't need acid for digestion, but most other things do, and I think I wasn't getting near what I needed of the protein and fatty acids from the way my stomach was *not* breaking things down. Thus, I ate more than I needed, because my body was desperate for the building blocks it needed, but all I was really getting out of it was empty carbs. I was eating a healthy diet, but I might as well have been gorging on junk food for the good it did me.
Does anyone else have this particular "obstacle"? It's pretty strange not eating anything unless I take a pill first, but it really helps.