Dr. Michelle Jorgensen

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The Baking Soda Test: How to Test for Low Stomach Acid

Baking Soda Test - How to Test for Low Stomach Acid

Have you ever wondered if you might have problems with stomach acid? It’s a common issue that can lead to a range of digestion and health problems. Luckily, there’s a simple home test you can perform that involves just baking soda and water. Let’s explore the importance of stomach acid, how to identify levels, and the “baking soda stomach acid test” that can help you gain insight into your stomach’s health.

Key Takeaways

  • Understanding the importance of stomach acid is key to maintaining optimal digestion and well-being.
  • The Baking Soda Stomach Acid Test can help identify stomach acid levels, and can be repeated multiple times for accuracy.
  • Consulting a healthcare professional may be necessary if lifestyle modifications or natural remedies are not providing relief from symptoms related to stomach acid production.

Understanding the Importance of Stomach Acid

Stomach acid plays a vital role in digestion and overall how your gut feels and works.  When stomach acid levels are off, it can lead to a variety of health issues.  Most people think high stomach acid is the concern, but more often it’s actually low stomach acid that causes the problems.  

Low stomach acid can lead to lowered defense against bad microorganisms, acid reflux, and slow digestion.  Although the symptoms are common, this is a frequently misdiagnosed condition.

Common treatments for stomach acid problems are antacids, H2 blockers, proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), and in certain cases, surgery. But the catch twenty two is that these all lower stomach acid even more, leading to worse problems rather than resolving the symptoms.  The baking soda test can provide useful insights into stomach acid levels and help you choose the correct solutions.

Diagnosing low stomach acid can be challenging, as it is often based solely on symptoms.  As a result, it can be difficult to tell if it’s low or too much stomach acid. The baking soda test provides a simple, cost-effective method for assessing stomach acid levels at home.

Identifying Symptoms of Low Stomach Acid

Symptoms of low stomach acid can include bloating, indigestion, and acid reflux. In some cases, these symptoms can be misdiagnosed as excess stomach acid, making it difficult to determine whether the issue is low or high stomach acid. One way to gain clarity on your stomach acid levels is by performing the “baking soda gastric acid secretion test”, simply known as the baking soda test.  This easy test measures the production of carbon dioxide gas when baking soda reacts with stomach acid. 

The Baking Soda Stomach Acid Test: How It Works

The baking soda stomach acid test is a straightforward and affordable method for determining if you have adequate stomach acid. It works by measuring how long it takes you to burp after drinking baking soda in water.  This baking soda reacts with stomach acid to produce carbon dioxide gas, which leads to a burp from you.  If your acid levels are normal, you will burp in two to three minutes after drinking.

**Early burps and multiple burps may indicate an excess of stomach acid, while burping after three minutes could suggest that there is not enough stomach acid. 

The test accuracy can be affected by several factors such as swallowing air during the test and eating before testing. However, it can be a useful tool for assessing stomach acid levels and guiding further testing or treatment.

The Baking Soda Test

Performing the Baking Soda Stomach Acid Test at Home

To perform the baking soda stomach acid test at home, follow these steps:

  1. Mix 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda in 4 to 6 ounces of cold water.
  2. Drink the solution.
  3. Watch for a burp and pay attention to the time when it occurs.
  4. If a burp happens within 2-3 minutes, there is most likely enough stomach acid.
  5. Repeating the test several times – preferably in the morning before food- can yield a more accurate picture of your stomach acid levels.

Natural Remedies for Improving Stomach Acid Production

Foods for Gut Health

Natural remedies can be an effective way to increase stomach acid production and improve digestion. Apple cider vinegar is one such remedy, known for its potential to stimulate acid production and assist with digestion. Adding a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to a glass of water and drinking it before meals can help improve stomach acid production, but don’t substitute for low acid.

Fermented foods, such as sauerkraut, kimchi, and kefir, are another option for improving stomach acid production. These foods contain organic acids, enzymes, and probiotics that aid in digestion and combat H. pylori, a common cause of low stomach acid. Nonetheless, keep in mind that those suffering from mold illness, candida, or other fungal infections may find their symptoms worsening after consuming fermented foods and should, therefore, avoid them.

Supplements to Help Treat Low Stomach Acid Production

Supplements, such as HCL Digest, can help treat low stomach acid production and improve digestion. HCL Digest contains Betaine HCL and digestive enzymes that work together to break apart proteins and support proper digestion. It’s important to take HCL Digest with every meal and supplement until the cause of the low acid has been corrected.

If you have been using medications such as ibuprofen, Tylenol, or aspirin for two weeks or more, you should not use HCL Digest. These medications can interact with supplements and increase the risk of stomach ulcers or other complications.

This is step one of a comprehensive gut healing protocol.  For information about the next steps to healing the gut, go HERE

When to Seek Professional Help for Stomach Acid Issues

Should symptoms persist, worsen, or if you suspect an underlying health issue causing low stomach acid, seeking professional help becomes necessary. Consult a gastroenterologist or a specialist in digestive health for appropriate diagnosis and treatment. These professionals can provide guidance on the most suitable testing methods and treatments for your specific situation.

Summary

Understanding the importance of stomach acid and its role in digestion is crucial for maintaining overall health. The baking soda stomach acid test can be a helpful tool for assessing stomach acid levels at home. By exploring natural remedies, supplements, and consulting with healthcare professionals when needed, you can take a proactive approach to addressing stomach acid issues and achieving optimal digestive health.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the baking soda test accurate for stomach acid?

The baking soda test is generally accepted to be accurate for measuring low stomach acid.

What does it mean if you burp after drinking baking soda and water?

Burping after drinking a baking soda and water mixture is the result of a chemical reaction between the sodium bicarbonate and stomach acid which produces carbon dioxide gas. This gas bubbles off and leads to a burp.

Can low stomach acid be fixed?

Low stomach acid can be fixed by increasing hydrochloric acid levels through supplements such as betaine hydrochloride (HCL Digest), taking the enzyme pepsin, making dietary changes, and healing your gut with other supplements.

Picture of Dr. Michelle Jorgensen DDS

Dr. Michelle Jorgensen DDS

Dr. Michelle Jorgensen is an author, speaker, teacher, biologic/holistic dentist, and health and wellness, provider. After practicing traditional dentistry for 10 years, Dr. Jorgensen became very sick. Through her own journey to return to health, she discovered she had mercury poisoning from drilling out mercury fillings for her patients. She was concerned that there may be other health-threatening materials or procedures in dentistry and this led her to the Biologic/Holistic Dentistry field.

For the last 15 years, she has been paving the way in Biologic/Holistic dentistry, learning from pioneers all over the world. She has created the Total Care Dental Way, a patient CARE centric, health-focused method for treating dental and overall health. Patients from around the world seek out her care and come to Total Care Dental to have their health restored.

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