Milpam3 -- I just wanted to comment on your question about peppermint... I have GERD, took two semesters of Anatomy & Physiology for nursing school, and have a master's in health promotion (just to give you a quick background).
The paradox of peppermint is that it can be good for digestion, but bad for acid reflux. This is because peppermint is a smooth muscle relaxer. Since the stomach is made of smooth muscle, relaxing any tightness or spasms can help food move through into your intestines. The problem for those with GERD is that the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is also made of smooth muscle. It is designed to open when food goes down your esophagus, and then close so nothing can come back up. The esophagus is not designed to withstand stomach acidic, so the LES is meant in part to protect it from acid exposure. Peppermint can relax the LES, thus interfering with this protective mechanism. Hope this explanation helps.
- 2/3/2008 12:21:22 PM