Dr Oz: OTC Heartburn Medication Esophageal Cancer Risk & Side Effects

Dr Oz: Heartburn Medication Side Effects

Heartburn drugs, known as proton pump inhibitor drugs, are extremely popular in the U.S. However, these drugs come with serious side effects and dangerous risks you may not know about. Americans spend $14 billion on heartburn medication each year, but are PPI drugs actually safe?

Heartburn occurs when stomach acid flows back up into the esophagus. PPI drugs help suppress stomach acid, but can also lead to other conditions like pneumonia, bone fractures and rebound acid. Because PPI drugs eliminate all stomach acid, they allow bacteria to grow and reduce the body’s ability to build calcium and magnesium.

Dr Oz: Heartburn Medication Esophageal Cancer Risk

Dr Oz explained why OTC heartburn medication may increase the risk of esophageal cancer.

Dr Oz explained why OTC heartburn medication may increase the risk of esophageal cancer.

Cindy has been taking PPI drugs every day for the past 12 years. Dr. Oz was very concerned about Cindy, because it’s now being shown that OTC heartburn medication may increase the risk of esophageal cancer. Cindy and Dr. Oz felt the difference between a normal esophagus and a cancerous one; the cancerous esophagus was a gross, jumbled mass.

Dr Oz PPI Drug Guidelines

Dr. Oz also demonstrated how antacids, H2 blockers, and PPI drugs work differently. Taking an antacid drug neutralizes acid, while H2 blockers reduce acid production. PPI drugs completely shut down acid production, which is good temporary relief, but can lead to serious side effects.

Dr. Oz believes that PPI drugs are not being used correctly in this country. He recommends that no one take PPI drugs for more than 14 days, and no more than 3 cycles in the year. The drugs should always be taken with food, and when you decide to get off the drugs, taper off slowly to avoid acid rebound.

Dr Oz: Heartburn Natural Remedies

Of course, there are plenty of natural ways to reduce heartburn. Avoiding trigger foods and drinking chamomile tea is a great place to start. Plus, one tablespoon of manuka honey works great for soothing heartburn.

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About the author

After my childhood dream of achieving Olympic figure skating gold fell through, I moved on to Plan B: become a writer. I've been writing since I can remember, and consider myself lucky to be making a career out of it. I graduated from Marymount Manhattan College in 2011, and since that time, I have worked as a writer, editor and blogger. Luckily for this site, my love of TV borders on obsession.

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