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Salt, Smoking Increase Odds of GERD

Instead of tea or alcohol, two interesting European studies found smoking and high salt intake increase the risk of gastro-esophagal reflux disease (GERD), commonly known as GERD. The research team based their work on some 47,000 patients who took part in two major public health surveys in a county in Norway.

Results by the numbers:

  • Patients who had smoked every day for more than 20 years were 70 percent more likely to have acid reflux than non-smokers.
  • Those who routinely added salt to meals were 70 percent more likely to have acid reflux than those who didn't.
  • Patients who ate salted meat or fish three or more times a week were 50 percent more likely to have acid reflux than those who never ate those foods.

Strangely enough, heavy coffee drinkers -- those who consummed about seven cups a day -- were also around 40 percent less likely to develop acid reflux than those who drank one or fewer cups a day.

I recommend a conservative, non-drug, non-surgical treatment for GERD that has worked virtually every time:

Medical News Today November 13, 2004

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