So for those of you who don’t know (which is probably most people), I have serious issues with heartburn due to a surgery procedure I had to endure back in 2001. The valve connecting my esophagus to my stomach was too strong and wouldn’t loosen to allow food or liquid to go down. Consequently, I couldn’t swallow well and was constantly gagging my food back up. Gross, I know, but at least it never reached my stomach so it had no bile or anything with it.
Before the surgery the problem had gotten so bad that I was choking on my own spit. After much deliberation I went under for abdominal surgery and they lasered the muscle which effectively killed it. In order to give me a little help with keeping stomach acid under control, they took some of the stomach and tied it around the esophagus.
My dreams of being an astronaut were lasered away in that instant! I’ll never be able to eat in space because I need gravity to make the food go down now. Woe woe woe!
………I’ve never wanted to be an astronaut so that’s not a problem at all.
I would now be able to swallow but never like a “normal” person. I’ve found ways around gagging on my food and they mostly involve drinking a butt load of water while I eat. They also warned me I would most likely have problems with heartburn later in life.
“Later in life” has come! My heartburn has gotten so out of control that I started taking 2 Zantac along with 1 Alkeseltzer every day, usually twice a day. Once in the afternoon and once in the evening. Even then the effects of the antacids were no longer having any effect and I’d still go to bed with heartburn so I’d have to sleep propped up on pillows.
I was scared I was abusing the antacids and they weren’t working anymore so I saw the doctor. He assured me I wasn’t killing organs taking so many antacids (I’m sure that answer would’ve been different had I been doing that long-term though) but that a change of meds was needed since normal measures weren’t working.
So now I’m on Omeprazole (Prilosec), 2/day for 30 days instead of the usual 1/day for 14 days.
Yep. I’m on the heavy duty plan. It’s giving me nasty headaches but nothing unmanageable. And with this plan I’ve had to carefully watch what I eat so that when I get off the meds at the end of the month, I won’t drop back into my normal pain. I may anyway but I’m going to try to avoid it. So my diet has undergone a dramatic metamorphosis. Even with the Omeprazole, if I eat something my body can’t handle, heartburn begins to flare. A slice of salami will give me a stomach ache.
So I’ve tried to be diligent about cutting out fatty, spicy, super sugary, gluten, and dairy foods. So far I feel good. Although often times in the evening my stomach gets a bit finicky due to the Omeprazole again. Side effects are wonderful, aren’t they? But it’s not bad. I’ve cut down my portions so I’m not stuffed at the end of the meal and cut down the amount of water I drink with each meal. I’ve also cut down on my coffee and chocolate (and when I ingest both).
Serious weight loss! I lost weight on Thanksgiving!! I’ve never done that before! Even on my best years I’ve stayed the same weight or gained 1 lb. Nope. This year I lost weight and am down to a new low even!
Woo! Go me! Heartburn sucks but at least I’ve got a consolation prize!
Maybe I’ll be able to reach my 160lb goal by the end of this year? I don’t know but I’m going to try at least!