Jump to content

stomach issues


Recommended Posts

About 3 weeks ago, I started getting really bad reflux and gas. I have had this many times before, but it has been under control when I take Prevacid as needed. The funny thing is that I drank a lot of diet soda and carbonated drinks for years and decide to give it up about 6 weeks ago. This should have helped my stomach issues, not made them worse. In fact I have mostly been eating really bland foods and drinking only water and broth for the past month and my stomach hasn't really gotten better. I've barely even had Gatorade, because it is acidic. And I've even been taking Prevacid every day which I usually don't.

I did start eating yogurt recently, and I am wondering whether that is the problem. I ate it yesterday, and a couple of hours later, I felt naseous, had gas and then got diarrhea. Someitmes I gag right after eating the yogurt and I have the same problem with milk, but I am OK with other dairy products like fro yo and cheese. Is it worth getting tested for lactose intolerance, or should I just avoid yogurt and milk? What kind of tests do they use? My POTS symptoms are in check for the most part, and I don't want to do anything to cause a relapse.

The only other change that I have been making is to reduce my beta blocker, and I am wondering whether this has made me hungrier and caused my stomach to produce extra acid. This doesn't explain the other symptoms, though.

Would appreciate any thoughts on this...


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hello Rita,

I have had acid reflux for about 20 years now. So I have tried almost everything. There some thing besides meds that can help reflux. Here is a list of the

things I do.

elevated head of bed

Gavison brand liquid antacid before bed (this one foams up in the stomach and makes a barrier so the acid doesn't splash up.

No eating at least 3 hours before bed.

Simethocone (for gas)

Take digestive enzymes with meals.

1 Zantac 75 before bed.

This maintainance program works well to keep me free of symptoms most of the time.

I noticed that you said in your message that you treat your symptoms when they flare up. That may be the key--recognizing the reflux as a chronic problem and treating it with a maintanience program all the time.

As for the gassiness after yougart and milk, I know people who have that problem. Some have told me that using lact-aid helps them a lot.

Good luck!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Rita,

I'm lactose intolerant. It's something that has gotten worse for me over the years instead of better. The test for it isn't so much fun...you have to fast and then they give you a drink that has lactose in it and see if you "respond" ;-) But i had that about 15 years ago, so maybe they have a better test now. I never had problems with acid reflux (except for reacting to certain medications), but i did have the symptoms you stated after drinking milk. Milk was the worst for me and i could handle a little bit of cheese. Now i can't handle any dairy. Anyway, you might have more than one thing going on with your GI system, so it's probably best to see a gastro doc. I've had good luck with the two I've seen. One diagnosed me with the lactose intolerance and the other diagnosed IBS. It improved the quality of my life tremendously. Good luck!


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Obviously Kristen would know more about this than I, but I think that if you're lactose intolerant, you are still (usually?) able to tolerate yogurt and hard cheeses?

I don't do any form of dairy, but I love soy yogurt, and the cultures don't seem to affect me negatively.

I, too have GERD, and since my insurance ***** they wouldn't cover the Protonix starting right before I left, and now I have to use Zantax, and the long-term CVS brand acid reducers, neither of which works very well. (Oh I miss my Protonix!!!)

I apologize in advance for being graphic, if I am!

I have had bad gas/bloating/cramps/diarrhea for about 8 years now. Most days. Unlike some POTS people, I have very rapid digestion, so my problem is opposite theirs. If it's possible, I think the Protonix might have helped my digestion a little bit.

That's weird, too, if your acid is in connection with the soda, cuz I always have thought they would be acidic.

Also, it does say in "What to Avoid" that dairy might aggravate symptoms in some of us.

And hey, if dairy doesn't work out for you, soy's pretty good!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks to all of you for your suggestions. You've helped to convince me that I do need to see a doctor instead of trying to figure this out on my own. I do have a routine that I follow - my bed is tilted and I try to eat smaller meals, avoid the foods that cause reflux/gas and don't eat before bedtime. But my self-treatment sure isn't working! :rolleyes: Kristen I think you're right that more than one thing is going on.

My POTS dr won't be much help, but I do have a good (and very cute!) gastro. I am just scared that he will suggest another upper endoscopy. I've had 2 of them before - one just a week before I got POTS. I think it contributed to my onset and I don't want to go thru that again. And, unfortunately, I may not be able to make it to the gastro for a couple of weeks.

Steph, I think my gastro did tell me that I could take Prevacid as needed. I will check with him again. I've been taking it every day for the past few weeks and it helps, but not enough. Maybe it's just that I need to switch meds. Most of the time my stomach doesn't bother me, and my episodes don't usually last for more than a week. So I'd rather not take something every day.

I read a little bit on lactose intolerance, and I think I may have a very mild version...I think some people react to all dairy and others to just some forms.

Jan, I am curious about the digestive enzymes you mention (and, by the way, I was so happy to hear that your husband's treatment is going well!). Which ones do you take?


Link to comment
Share on other sites

My doctor realized I had developed a milk protein allergy soon after I became sick. I'm told this is quite common for people with OI/CFIDS for some reason.

Lactose and I get along fine ;-) but it's the protein that makes me very ill (stomach pains/cramps, intense pain that goes down my arms and through my body, headaches...). I can still eat a piece of cheese on a burger, but when it comes to milk and ice cream and things like that I must have soy products.

I look for the PARVE symbol on almost everything I eat.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh, one more thing Rita. Those of us with this milk protein hypersensitivity will not 'test' positive for it in any traditional allergy test. You will just have to cut dairy out completely for three months or so to see if it works. The milk protein problem can cause a lot of upper GI distress like mouth ulcers, reflux, upper GI pain, etc. AND you can get symptoms several hours AFTER eating the offending food. Like, for example four hours later.

Hope this helps!


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks, Emily. My symptoms seem to be lasting for a few days after I have the dairy. I didn't have any dairy yesterday and I woke up this morning feeling nauseous. My stomach problems have been worse in the past and are mild compared to others here. But this current wave has been going on for about a month so I need to get it checked out. I broke down and made an appointment with my gastro for Friday. He will probably tell me I am fine, but I at least need to try to figure this out. I'll post an update then!

Thanks again,


Link to comment
Share on other sites

rita -

sorry for the delayed reply, but i thought i'd chime in to affirm your reading that there are different degrees of lactose intolerance. it can also vary for a given person from time to time. when i had the major GI issues this past year, running the gamut from ulcerative colitis to gastroparesis & reflux & more, "everyone" seemed to think i should scrap dairy. i did for quite some time & no difference for me (other than when in the midst of a UC flare). i already knew i had a bit of sensitivity, i.e. can't have 5 servings of dairy in one sitting, but that's not something that has much of an effect on me day-to-day. anyway, like em said the testing isn't foolproof depending on what part of the dairy you're sensitive too.

but more importantly, how did your appt go on friday??

B) melissa

Link to comment
Share on other sites


I can't tolerate yogurt either, not even the soy kind. There's something about the bacteria or whatever. It gives me a stomach pain. I can count on it. If the food is supposed to be "good" for you, I can't eat eat. Figures?!


Where did you get your information about the milk sensitivity not showing up in a milk allergy test? Just wondering. My entire life my stomach has been "sore" and I've had IBS forever and I do NOT test positive (in the blood) to milk protein. BUT, I noticed that the intestinal problems and soreness are much improved after I've cut out milk. I've asked my allergy doctor about my negative blood test reaction, and he didn't say anything?!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Melissa, thanks for checking in.

My appointment went well. My doctor thinks I have a mild form of IBS, and now that I think about it, I think he's right. He told me to switch from Prevacid to Pepcid, Tagamet or Zantac and also take fiber supplements. I was definitely NOT getting enough fiber before, and that may have been a big part of the problem. I'm also supposed to stop all dairy for a week and see what happens. Then I can eat dairy again, and if I feel worse then dairy could be part of the problem.

So that's the plan for now. So far I do feel like I am getting better, so I'll just keep my fingers crossed. My stomach issues are minor compared to lots of folks here, but they still leave me feeling yucky a lot of the time! So I am really trying to get them under control...


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...