Heartburn that won’t go away despite medication is a widespread problem and it’s a sign that the condition has progressed.
Perhaps you’re curious about the connection between heartburn and erectile or sexual dysfunction. As you continue reading, you’ll discover the answer to this inquiry within the following sections.
Table Of Contents
The Main Cause Of Heartburn & GERD
Side Effects Of Proton Pump Inhibitors
Low Stomach Acid Causes Following Conditions
Absorption Of Vitamins & Minerals
What is a PPI (Proton-Pump Inhibitor)?
Medications On The Rise – Necessity or Business
How Common is Heartburn And How Long Does It Last
Foods to Avoid With Acid Reflux
The Most Common Triggers Of Heartburn
Acid Reflux During Pregnancy
How to Cure Heartburn Fast?
New treatments For GERD – The New Acid Reflux Surgery
The causes of heartburn that won’t go away can vary for each person. Mild forms can usually be treated by dietary changes in a short time.
The intake of antacids, which can bind stomach acid, also relieve the symptoms but we should keep in mind that eliminating symptoms doesn’t mean to heal.
If the symptoms persist, doctors and medical professionals recommend taking PPI’s (Proton Pump Inhibitors), which will be the very focus of this article.
We will provide facts and statistics based on scientific studies that will give you the full picture of whether these drugs actually cure heartburn and GERD, the chronic form of acid reflux, or make it even worse.
In fact, scientific studies suggest that the main cause for heartburn and acid reflux is not necessarily acid abundance.
The Main Cause Of Heartburn That Won’t Go Away & GERD
It has been found that gastric acid deficiency is the main cause of heartburn and GERD. The details will be given later in the article.
Proton Pump Inhibitors block the proton pumps in the stomach. As a result, less acid is produced, which is essential when gastric ulcers are present with the reflux disease.
Study results indicate that these drugs actually only make sense in such a case.
Below are excerpts from a study that clearly reveals the subject with many details
Side Effects Of Proton Pump Inhibitors
If PPI’s are used for heartburn (and probably long-term), the following side effects must be expected (look at the screenshots above):
- Gastric acid deficiency – (Paradoxically, one of the most common side effects of PPIs is gastrointestinal distress).
- Acute Kidney Injury
- Cronic Kidney Disease (which is accoridng to Traditional Chinese Medicine among the main causes of SEXUAL DYSFUNCTION. See the second screenshot above)
- Sleep Disturbances
- The liver often does not react well to PPI, which can be seen in the blood analysis in poor liver values.
- PPIs can promote the development of food allergies. If too little gastric acid is produced, then the food is also less intensively minced. This in turn increases the risk that undigested protein particles (which may act like allergens) enter the bloodstream through the intestinal mucosa. But since they do not belong there, the organism produces antibodies against them. When the allergens arrive again, ie.. when such undigested particles enter the blood again, the allergic reaction occurs.
- PPIs inhibit the absorption of iron, magnesium and calcium, lthat leads to anemia or decreasing bone density and therefore to osteoporosis.
- If the acid production of the stomach is reduced by medication, then this leads to a deficient immune situation in the stomach. As a result, no one should be surprised that people taking PPIs are much more susceptible to bacterial intestinal infections (eg, Salmonella infections) than people who are not taking PPIs and have a healthy gastric acidity level.
- Since the parietal cells also produce the intrinsic factor for the absorption of vitamin B12, it is obvious that the suppression of parietal cells by PPI may also lead to an intrinsic factor deficiency and subsequently to a deficient vitamin B12 absorption.
- Studies from 2009 found that when given to healthy people, PPIs can actually lead to the symptoms they were originally intended for, i.e. they initially cause harmless heartburn which, with continued PPI use, can gradually turn into heartburn that won’t go away, which is actually a sign the condition has gotten worse.
- More concretely, of 120 healthy persons who never suffered from eructations, heartburn or stomach depressions and now received PPIs for eight weeks, 44% subsequently complained of eructations, heartburn or stomach depressions, whereas in the placebo group this was rarely the case.
Proton pump inhibitors, which require a prescription, are linked to a potential 25% increase in the risk of premature death from any cause, according to a new study recently published in the British Medical Journal Open.
No over-the-counter proton pump inhibitors or specific brands of prescription drugs were evaluated in this study.
Prescription variants are typically taken for long periods by patients with severe symptoms, while low-dose over-the-counter formulas are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for short-term use. The researchers stress that their study does not prove cause and effect.
Low Stomach Acid Causes Following Conditions:
- Acid reflux
- Fееlіng оf fullness in the stomach
- Extrеmе gаѕ аftеr mеаlѕ Cоnѕtіраtіоn
- Chrоnіс іntеѕtіnаl іnfесtіоn
- Food allergies аnd іntоlеrаnсеѕ
- Chronic fаtіguе
- Dryness оf ѕkіn and hаіr
- Asthma Dерrеѕѕіоn Oѕtеороrоѕіѕ
- Autoimmune diseases. For example, multiple sclerosis has the following effects on the sexual condition of men:The most common known complaints in men with multiple sclerosis are:
a) Erectile dysfunction (50%–75%)
b) Ejaculation disorders and/or
c) Orgasm disorders (50%)
d) Decreased libido (39%) and
e) Anorgasmia (37%)
Absorption Of Vitamins & Minerals
Long-term use of such PPIs leads to a variety of complications, as stomach acid plays the biggest role in breaking down our food and making nutrients available for absorption in the small intestine. As mentioned earlier, heartburn is the most significant symptom, which at first subsides slightly and with continued use of PPIs, it becomes heartburn that won’t go away.
If the stomach lacks the necessary amount of acid, the absorption of certain vitamins and minerals is also inhibited.
The most important nutrients that are then poorly absorbed include:
- Vitamin B12.
Gastric acid also helps to sterilize food as it passes through the stomach, which reduces the likelihood of intestinal infections.
The main side effect is indigestion, which is the basis for heartburn. If left untreated it can lead to GERD, which is also called acid reflux disease.
What is a PPI (Proton-Pump Inhibitor)?
Without knowing what PPIs are, you can’t learn how to cure heartburn permanently and without any side effects.
If you search in the internet for “best over the counter medication for acid reflux” or any other term that is used to define heartburn, you most likely will get to see results showing medication that reduces stomach acid.
They consider PPI’s as the best relief for acid reflux.
Maybe most people have no idea what PPIs are.
A proton pump inhibitor (PPI) is a drug which blocks the enzyme in the wall of the stomach that produces acid.
Using it for a few weeks may not harm, but, as reported earlier in this article, long-term use of PPI’s can lead to various diseases.
It is worth noting and interesting to see that the media and academia are acknowledging the new findings about the long term use of PPIs but still insist on disproved methods.
The objection may arise that these drugs are used for a short time and that they have been used successfully for decades in the treatment of GERD.
Assuming that this could be true, what else could be the cause of heartburn that won’t go away and GERD?
If that were true, we could research further to find out the reason for these ailments and diseases. However, studies and findings from pharmaceutical research tell us something else.
For instance, University Health News (UHN), which relies on sources such as some of America’s most respected medical schools, hospitals, and health centers reports:
„The fact is that what causes heartburn and other signs of poor digestion may be the common age-related problem of low stomach acid.“
UHN further states: „Despite the common belief that most people have too much stomach acid, the truth is that most don’t have enough.
It is estimated that between 23 and 35% percent of those over 65 have symptoms of low stomach acid as a result of just getting older, while others have it as a result of taking drugs designed to reduce stomach acid production or infections with H. Pylori….“ 
In another article they report:
“They’re among the most commonly prescribed drugs for heartburn, but proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) have been linked to ischemic stroke and other risks“ and „Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are prescribed to some 15 million Americans to reduce stomach acid and ease heartburn.
Millions more use over-the-counter PPIs. New research, however, is showing a link between long-term, high-dosage PPI use and ischemic stroke.“ 
Medications On The Rise – Necessity or Business?
On the 1st of December 2017, Kiplinger has published an article about „The 15 All-Time Best-Selling Prescription Drugs“. There is stated that „Nexium“, a drug for acid reflux ranked 10th.
Below is the related part:
„Company: AstraZeneca Treats: Gastroesophageal reflux disease Lifetime sales: $61.8 billion Patent protection? No If the name rings a bell, there’s a reason…
What’s amazing is how the “Purple Pill” has generated nearly $62 billion in revenue…
„Nexium (esomeprazole) is a proton pump inhibitor that decreases the amount of acid produced in the stomach. 
Since there are different drugs for acid reflux disease or mild heartburn, we summarize all drugs of this type, which can lead to the conclusion that these are among the best-selling drugs.
The well known magazine „Nature“ published an article about the newest research results on September 20th, 2017.
The conclusion from this article is that the conventional treatment approach to heartburn and acid reflux has definitely to be revised:
„Proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) are widely used for gastric acid suppression in a number of gastric-acid-related diseases, including GERD.
However, in recent years, increasing evidence of adverse events has been reported, raising concerns with clinicians and patients.“ 
Besides the destructive effects of stomach acid if entering the esophagus, over time, acid reflux leads to the inability of the body to absorb essential nutrients, as mentioned earlier.
It comes to putrefaction in the stomach, which feeds the milieu for H. Pylori
How Common is Heartburn And How Long Does It Last
According to the American College of Gastroenterology:
“More than 60 million Americans experience heartburn at least once a month and some studies have suggested that more than 15 million Americans experience heartburn symptoms each day. Symptoms of heartburn, also known as acid indigestion, are more common among the elderly and pregnant women.” [http://patients.gi.org/topics/acid-reflux/]
Please note the statement “are more common among the elderly”! This is a crucial fact that we must take into account in order to properly understand the subject. It’s a clear indication of a lack of stomach acid in old age, which is known to cause heartburn that won’t go away, as mild heartburn can happen to anyone. It’s harmless.
A recent study conducted by Serhat Bor, from the Division of Gastroenterology Ege University School of Medicine, İzmir, Turkey, and Elif Sarıtaş Yüksel from the Department of Gastroenterology, İzmir Katip Çelebi University School of Medicine, Atatürk Training and Research Hospital, İzmir, Turkey revealed that the highest rates of GERD prevalence are in northern countries, led by Norway and the US, followed by Turkey, Egypt, Argentine, Germany and UK.
[source: Turk J Gastroenterol 2017; 28(Suppl 1): S4-S9]
As for the question, how long does heartburn last, we can say that It depends on the severity and how you try to get rid of it
Foods to Avoid With Acid Reflux?
If food is naturally or the meal does not include unnatural ingredients and if you have a healthy digestion, then you don’t have to worry about which foods could cause heartburn. However, you would have to be careful not to take water or drinks immediately after meals.
If you are fast food junkie, you probably only can hope for relief, because then most likely your heartburn and acid reflux won’t go away.
Children – not babies – (normally) never have stomach pain or heartburn. This is proof enough that we are endowed with all the properties we need for perfect health.
There is nothing suggesting that excessive stomach acid is harmful or that too much stomach acid even occurs.
On the contrary, it is well known that stomach acid decreases with age and many studies have been conducted examining the association between stomach diseases and acidity with results showing that the less stomach acid you have, the more diseases can develop in your body.
If you have any pain anywhere in the body, whether in internal or external organs, you do not say that you need to remove any elements from these organs!
But when it comes to the stomach, the culprit is almost always identified: excessive stomach acid! And according to the current methods of treatment, it must be eliminated. And they do this by prescribing PPIs over a long period of time, which in turn causes more and more stomach acid to be lost, which is a factor that can cause heartburn that won’t go away and GERD. The more frequently these drugs are taken, the more the condition worsens, according to the studies.
Does it not seem odd to you? This is really very strange.
The main question that must come into mind is “Why (usually) people that don’t eat fast food and drink alcohol, almost never get heartburn?” That’s the right question.
Another important question is: “Why is heartburn so widespread in countries with western eating habits”.
And last but not least: “Why does a disease or condition become more prevalent the more it is treated with certain medications; in this case with PPI’s?”
Statistics clearly show, that most parts of the african and asian people are almost free of GERD, the severe form of heartburn.
The right approach is to accept that there are eating habits or used drugs that cause illnesses in the long term.
For instance fast food may not harm if you eat it once a month or maybe twice or even not if it’s taken once a week, however, eating it every day can not only cause heartburn, but also many other diseases.
If we keep in mind how much fast food is consumed, we can guess why heartburn is also very common.
As the saying goes: “You are what you eat!”, you can’t expect to maintain your health and wellness, if you are a “fast food junkie”.
Once you get permanent heartburn, you have to be careful.
Only then we can talk about food that should be avoided
Because natural food and normal eating habits almost never cause heartburn.
There are some foods that are known to have boosting effects on the immune system, such as cordyceps sinensis mushroom. It has a regulatory effect.
The best way to get rid of heartburn is increasing your stomach acid. Thus, you have to take supplements, but more important is, you have to make a dietary change.
If you are already suffering from frequent heartburn, you must observe which foods will improve or worsen your condition.
But, it is not true that everyone who suffers from heartburn should avoid or take the same foods.
Such misleading information can probably be found a thousand times on the Internet.
You should make a list, where you put all the food you eat into three groups.
- The first group, foods that worsen your condition.
- The second group, foods that ease your heartburn.
- The third group, foods that neither help nor harm, i.e. the condition remains the same, or you could not see any clear changes.
Now lets dive into the main part of that topic.
The Most Common Triggers Of Heartburn
Dr. Jonathan V. Wright who is medical director at Tahoma Clinic, Renton, Washington, states in an article,
“Since 1976, I’ve checked literally thousands of individuals complaining of “heartburn” and indigestion for stomach acid production using a commercially available, extremely precise, research-verified procedure.
Overacidity is almost never found, especially in those over age 35.
The usual findings are underacidity (from “just a little under” to no acid at all) or normal acidity, in which case the indigestion symptoms are caused by something else.
The majority have underacidity (as might be expected in a no-longer-young stomach).”
He further states:
“I can say that in 24 years of nutritionally oriented practice, I’ve worked with thousands of individuals who’ve found the cause of their “heartburn” and indigestion to be low stomach acidity.”
Source: Dr. Jonathan V. Wright – The Digestive Theory Of Aging Part 2
Now the legitimate question arises why patients suffering from heartburn that won’t go away or GERD should take gastric acid reducing medications such as proton pump inhibitors etc. when it is true that low stomach acid levels lead to digestive problems, and later to these diseases and conditions.
John Clarke, a gastroenterologist at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore says:
“So when there’s less stomach acid, it leaves people vulnerable to nutritional deficiencies and infections, including food poisoning like salmonella, a serious, sometimes life-threatening digestive system infection called Clostridium difficile, and perhaps pneumonia.”[source: www.npr.org]
Over time acid reflux can cause GERD. This is the abbreviation for Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease.
If you are suffering from GERD than you could struggle to find any relevant solution for.
Occasional heartburn is a common phenomenon in Western countries. Mostly, the person has exaggerated while eating or drinking.
Eating until your stomach bursts causes the stomach entrance to open and acid or food components to rise up into the esophagus.
This is physiological under these conditions. The pressure in the stomach is too large, so that the locking mechanism can not withstand.
But the esophagus is sensitive. It does not tolerate acidity, it burns and hurts.
If the discomfort occurs in such frequency that the well-being is significantly impaired, or an organ complication occurs, it is called a reflux disease.
In reflux disease, the barrier function at the transition between the esophagus and stomach is disturbed.
The locking mechanism is complex and only works in conjunction with the diaphragm, lower oesophageal sphincter and entry into the stomach.
In the event of a malfunction with incompetent occlusion, the pressure difference between the thorax and the abdomen alone causes an excessive acid load on the esophagus even without the stomach being overfilled.
The reflux disease can cause the following symptoms:
- Frequent cough
- Erosions on the enamel
- A type of bronchial asthma.
In the advanced stage, the esophagus develops an endoscopically visible, clinically painful inflammation due to the action of acid.
Over a period of years, esophageal cancer can develop in very unfavorable cases.
The causes of heartburn that won’t go away can be different. In general, however, it can be said that with heartburn, the regulation of gastric acid production is not in balance.
In most cases, suffering people have also indigestion. Usually, body cleanse also is a useful method to improve the general health condition. If done properly and regularly, it can increase stomach acid.
Today, after tons of studies, it is well known that most cases are caused by low stomach acid which requires a totally different treatment approach.
I recommend the book “Why Stomach Acid Is Good for You: Natural Relief from Heartburn, Indigestion, Reflux and GERD” by Dr. Jonathan V. Wright who is a pioneer in natural treatment and an expert in the use of bioidentical hormone replacement for men and women.
He is a fore-runner in research of natural therapy.
Since 1983, Drs. Wright has regularly taught seminars about natural treatment methods to a large number of physicians in the United States.
This book is definitely a “must-read” for anyone suffering from heartburn that won’t go away or even acid reflux disease.
Acid Reflux During Pregnancy
During pregnancy, the hormone progesterone is produced. It serves to relax the uterine muscles.
It also relaxes the sphincter between the stomach and the esophagus. As a result, gastric acid enters the tube and triggers the unpleasant feeling of heartburn.
Progesterone also slows down the wave-like contractions of the stomach, which slows down digestion.
Until birth, a woman’s uterus can grow to the size of a watermelon.
Towards the end of pregnancy, the growing fetus in the abdominal cavity needs so much space that it slows down the excretion and pushes up the stomach acid. This also causes heartburn.
Pregnant women and also other people suffering from acid reflux at night should sleep on a so called “acid reflux pillow“. It really helps.
How to Cure Heartburn Fast?
There are lots of alternative ways to do this but here we want to introduce a very effective method to get rid of heartburn:
It is something that is known in European countries as a remedy for colds, not in treating heartburn.
Taking thyme juice for heartburn is well known among Turks and the most famous doctor and medic of the Middle Ages, Abu Ali Sina, reports on it in his well-known work Al Qanun Fi’t Tib (Canon of Medicine). Here is a short quote:
“Thyme has a decomposing and dissolving effect. It even breaks down frozen blood.
Thyme juice prevents freezing in winter.
It cleans the lungs, facilitates ejection of sputum.
Mixed with honey and boiled, it cures pain in the chest and under the ribs and prevents spitting up blood.
As an additive to food, it protects eyesight and relieves poor eyesight.
It is good for digestion, relieves indigestion.
It is diuretic, helps against worms”.
After taking it for three or four days, you can observe a significant improve in your general health condition. You take it with every meal right before starting to eat.
You put some thyme juice (about 0.5 cm or 3 – 4 tablespoons ) in a glass (0.2 L) and fill the rest of the glass with water. You drink half before eating and finish the glass while eating. After eating, wait an hour and drink the same amount of thyme juice diluted with water. The thyme juice should not contain too much thyme oil. It should be somewhere between 0.5% and 1%. If there is more, the juice dosage must be reduced accordingly.
Because thyme oil is very strong you should never take it in pure form.
If you take it in pure form it culd be dangerous but diluted with water it has lots of benefits.
Take it again after one additional hour (which is then 2 hours after the meal) 3 – 4 tablespoons of thyme juice diluted with water.
Don’t take it more than three weeks. After three weeks you have to take a break of at least 5 – 7 days.
But most likely you will get rid of the symptoms after a maximum of 4 – 5 days. No matter how severe the complaints are, it doesn’t take more than a few days to feel the relief.
New treatments For GERD – New Acid Reflux Surgery
Antасіdѕ, antibiotics, аntіhіѕtаmіnеѕ, histamine blосkеrѕ, anti-spasm drugѕ, раіn kіllеrѕ, PPI’ѕ (Prоtоn Pumр Inhіbіtоrѕ) etc., dереndіng оn thе раtіеnt’ѕ соmрlаіntѕ, are bеіng рrеѕсrіbеd for реорlе with mild hеаrtburn, acid rеflux, аnd any оthеr gastric соmрlаіnts the patient mау hаvе.
All оf these drugѕ thаt аrе ѕuрроѕеd to “cure” thе соndіtіоn, аrе only ѕuссеѕѕful іn mаkіng it wоrѕе.
Thеу wеrе оrіgіnаllу оnlу mеаnt tо bе used аѕ a tеmроrаrу ѕуmрtоm blосkеr, nоt a сurе, and not for lоng-tеrm uѕе. Hоwеvеr, thаt is not how thеу аrе being used.
GERD surgery for a dаmаgеd еѕорhаguѕ, dаmаgеd ѕtоmасh lining, a relaxed оr dаmаgеd LES, or possibly a hiatal hеrnіа are results of PPI abuse.
Thе wоrѕе-саѕе scenario іѕ саnсеr.
Approximately 7500 monthly searches are done on Google with different keyword variatons in order to find information about GERD (acid reflux) surgery.
A report regarding the GERD surgery success rates reveals however, that nearly 18% of patients who undergo primary laparoscopic antireflux surgery, experience recurrent gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) requiring long-term medication or a secondary surgery.
Among all logical and effective ways on how to cure heartburn, surgery only should be considered when everything else has failed. Even then you should consider TIF, the new GERD surgery method.
TIF is useful in cases of severe GERD with the inability of applying any other treatment method due to any reason.
The U.S. National Library Of Medicine has published more than 60 studies about heartburn and GERD symptoms in adults. Some of the studies there are quite interesting.
TIF (Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication), The New And Most Safe GERD Surgery
Besides the ineffectiveness of PPI’s, some studies also reveal successful cases of the TIF Procedure. For example in one study the participants were divided in two groups.
One group was treated with TIF, a new kind of surgery method. TIF is the acronym for “transoral incisionless fundoplication”.
This is a minimally invasive treatment for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) that is performed in the outpatient setting.
The TIF procedure is performed from inside the patient’s stomach without incisions.
The other group had to take PPI’s (with maximum dose) for 8 weeks and they all were tracked for six months.
The study revealed that the TIF therapy was more effective than the PPI’S. The study concludes:
“All patients underwent endoscopic evaluation at 6-month follow-up.
Complete healing or reduction in reflux esophagitis at 6 months was achieved in 90% (18/20) of patients in the TIF group (off PPIs) compared with 38% (5/13) in PPI group.
90% (28/31) of patients in the TIF group (off PPIs) reported elimination of daily troublesome heartburn versus 13% (2/16) of patients in the PPI group (maximum daily dose).”
However, there are two main points to consider:
1) The TIF method is associated with side effects and risks such as nasuea, vomiting etc.
There is also a video describing the whiole procedure in detail.
2) The study shows the results for a six month period.
It does not mean that the patients will not experience recurrent GERD.
I think they will most likely experience recurrent GERD, because of the fact that GERD is the consequence of low stomach acid. At least some of them if not all.
Therefore, one should use alternative treatment methods to get rid of heartburn and GERD, even if it is severe.
Because it is well known that some natural supplements, if used properly, definitely lead to relief and complete healing.
Of course, no one can predict when healing will occur.
Maybe a few days, weeks or maybe two or three months. But it is well known that alternative methods usually can lead to complete healing.
Only if there is an obstacle in using any kind of natural supplement, such as an allergic reactions etc., you should think about the TIF method.
And, consider that according to the study mentioned above, nearly 10% of the TIF group did not get healed.
In addition, you should also consider that according to research nearly 18% of people got GERD surgery, have to undergo a second surgery or long-term treatment with PPI’s (according to prevailing opinion).
And last but not least the side effects and risks of a surgery are clear.
If you are suffering from severe GERD or permanent acid reflux, you should consider using special pillows until you get rid of GERD.
At least, the pillow prevents the acid from reaching the throat and mouth during sleep.
This also reduces the damage that the acid could otherwise cause.