Beware of the PPIs

Study: Study: Acid Reflux Drugs Cause Rebound Symptoms

A recent study shows that being on the powerful acid-suppressing medications like Nexium and Aciphex for a couple months increase the chances of reflux upon stopping them.

I see this all the time. Folks are put on these meds for any type of GI symptom, asthma (which recently was not supported in the literature, but is still used),  or chest pain. They take them for a couple months and when they stop them, instant reflux. So they go back on them, convinced they have reflux and happily go about their life. Unfortunately, they promote increased intestinal permeability (leaky gut syndrome), osteoporosis,  and other vitamin/mineral deficiencies.

These can have huge ramifications on health, all from an innocent 2 month trial on "The Purple Pill".

In my clinic, if one of these meds is on the list, our first goal is to get off of it. My experience, supported by this new study is that it's not easy. Generally, big diet change is needed: elimination of gluten, more real foods like fruits and vegetables. Starting probiotics and maybe aloe or DGL licorice can often allow people to wean off the acid-suppressing meds, a huge victory in health promotion.

Moral of the story: If you need a proton pump inhibitor (PPI) like Nexium for a reflux-like symptom. Take it for 6 weeks. Meanwhile, take the message from your body that something is not right. Cut out smoking, alcohol, caffeine, processed/refined foods and adopt solid whole foods nutrition and regular exercise. Stop the PPI and enjoy your health.

Contributed by:

Dr. Jeffrey Gladd


Dr. Jeffrey Gladd graduated from Indiana University School of Medicine in 2001. He then went on to train in family medicine...

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Dr. Jeffrey Gladd
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