If you have acid reflux pain, adjusting your lifestyle is one of the best things you can do for yourself. It really can make a huge difference in how you feel. It’s also the most important thing you can do to stop the progression of your disease. Kyle’s story is a great example of how making changes, even when they are hard, are worth it in the long run.
Kyle is a young, active father of two. When he’s not working hard to close his latest sale, he’s chasing around his young kids, playing golf, or skiing. After learning about the potential for serious, long-term complications as a result of reflux disease, he decided to get serious about his lifestyle and make an effort to control his symptoms.
This is Kyle’s story.
Kicking my soda habit
I love Diet Pepsi. I used to carry around a bottle with me most of the day, and I was easily drinking 40-50 ounces every day. But about a year ago, I started to notice that I had heartburn more and more often. I was to the point that I was taking Zantac every day to control my symptoms. After spending time on RefluxMD and learning that I’m at Stage 2, I realized I needed to make some changes. I already felt lousy enough and the medication didn’t stop my acid reflux pain from to getting worse.
The first thing I did was quit drinking soda to see if it would make a difference. I almost immediately started to feel better. (Of course, I replaced that habit with a tea-drinking habit, but so far, that doesn’t seem to be causing me any problems).
Finding my other triggers
So I started to pay attention to the other things I was doing to see if I could figure out what else was causing my symptoms. I realized that chocolate, tomato sauces, like pizza sauce and salsa, and coffee all made me feel miserable. Now I know that what I eat is going to make or break how I feel.
Stress changes everything
The other big thing I’ve noticed is that stress is a huge trigger for me. I started a new job last year, and I had heartburn every night no matter what I ate. My symptoms were significantly worse. I even started to have regurgitation at night. Once I felt more comfortable with the job, my symptoms went back to normal.
What I do now
The biggest thing for me was identifying my triggers. If I avoid carbonated drinks, tomato sauces, and chocolate, my symptoms are pretty much under control. I do still take a daily Zantac, but I don’t seem to need anything stronger than that. I’m not going to lie, it was hard to break the soda habit, but feeling better is worth it.
Kyle is a great example of how identifying your triggers can help you manage your symptoms. It may take some trial and error, but finding (and avoiding!) your triggers really can help you feel better. We’ll be checking in with Kyle periodically to see how he’s doing, so look for more of this story to come. Thanks for sharing your story, Kyle!