Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Fighting fire with fire, with the help of mother

You may recall that a couple months back I went on a fast. Since then my body has been completely out of whack. Apparently my system was shocked by the absence of caffeine/beer/cheese, and then shocked again by the reintroduction of those very things. It’s easy to blame the fast, but it’s more likely the simple fact that I am getting older. I do, after all, have graying sideburns. That said, I’m sure it was the fast.

One of the things I have seemingly been confronted with is acid reflux. According to my doctor, a.k.a. the Internet, acid reflux happens when your stomach creates too much acid or whatever and it refluxes or something. The remedy is to take one of the drugs that I’ve seen on TV but never had any idea what it was for because I assumed, “I’m a young guy, I don’t need to pay attention to this.” Flomax? Dercatex? The one where the couple is taking a bath outside? Probably that one.

Anyone who knows me (post college) knows that I don’t like drugs. I prefer to do things the natural way, which in most cases is, “Wait until it goes away.” The acid reflux didn’t seem to be going away, so I researched some au natural remedies.

One home remedy involved having a glass of whole milk before bed. I haven’t had milk in years because the entire concept of milk disgusts me, but I braved through it. For about a week straight I downed a glass of milk before going upstairs to bed, slammed the glass on the counter and screamed, “Take that, acid!” It did nothing.

I needed to take it to the next level. According to my strenuous research, the most popular home remedy for acid reflux involved drinking apple cider vinegar. It couldn’t just be any vinegar, however. It needed to be the organic, non-pasteurized kind. Also, I need not be scared by “the mother.” I had no idea what that last part meant.

“Cool,” I thought. “Drinking vinegar … this is what my life has come to. I am 34.” It was also recommended that I drink it with a straw since vinegar is acidic and it wouldn’t be a good idea to be swishing it around in my mouth and what not. I did use the straw, but I think it still touched my teeth. I look forward to my next visit to the dentist when he says, “There are literally holes in your teeth. What happened?” And I’ll be like, “Fighting acid with acid, doc … please fill the holes, provided my insurance covers that.”

When my wife got home she saw that I was drinking vinegar through a straw and thought nothing of it, as she is an informed bystander of my war against body acid. Then she looked at the bottle and said, “Why does it say, ‘With the mother?’” and started laughing.

Yeah, so apparently organic apple cider vinegar contains “the mother,” which is described as floating matter that forms from the pectin and apple residue. It’s as attractive as it sounds. If any parts of the mother ever get through my straw I will probably throw up.

I can’t even really tell if drinking the vinegar is working or not. Is that body acid or vinegar acid? It should be mentioned that the most popular natural recommendation to combat acid reflux is to lower or eliminate caffeine intake. I think we all know that can’t happen, so here’s to vinegar! Cheers! Word to the mother.



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