Prescribed drugs for heartburn increase the risk of stomach cancer by two times, according to an article published in the Daily Mail. An observational study carried out by researchers from the University College London revealed that individuals who use proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) to treat chronic heartburn even at the recommended time of two weeks double the risk of the development of cancer in the succeeding seven years, compared to those who do not use PPIs. Moreover, individuals who use the prescribed drugs take them for a year are five times more likely to develop cancer. Furthermore, those who take PPIs every day for three years are eight times more at risk of cancer.
As part of the study, the researchers observed more than 63,000 patients for an average of 7.5 years. They calculated that for every 10,000 people taking PPIs, around eight of them will develop stomach cancer, which is four times more than if none took the drugs.
Since the drugs were first licensed in the United Kingdom 28 years ago, the rates of esophageal cancer are around 15,000 new cases each year. According to the data of Cancer Research U.K., cases of esophageal cancer increased by six percent since the early 1990s. Aside from cancer risks, PPIs were also linked to the increased risk of stroke, a decrease in sperm count, raised the risk of kidney failure, and increased risk of hip fractures.
In England, about 55 million of PPIs are prescribed by doctors every year to treat chronic heartburn. However, like all other prescription drugs, PPIs are deemed to have side effects, especially to those patients who continue to use them for months or years, instead of the recommended maximum of two to four weeks. PPIs work by blocking the release of stomach acid by cells, known as proton pumps, in the lining of the stomach.
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Causes of heartburn and its natural home remedies
Heartburn, also known as acid reflux is a common condition that is caused by gastroesophageal reflux (GER), a condition where some of the stomach contents are forced back up into the esophagus, creating a burning pain in the lower chest. Heartburn is a symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), which is a persistent acid reflux that happens more than twice a week.
According to the data of American College of Gastroenterology, over 60 million Americans experience heartburn at least once a month. Moreover, some studies indicated that over 15 million Americans suffer from its symptoms every day. Heartburn often occurs in most people if the lining of the esophagus comes in contact with excess stomach acid for a long period. According to the National Health Service in the U.K., the condition can be a result of eating consuming specific food and drinks, such as coffee, alcohol, chocolate, and fatty or spicy foods, being overweight or obese, smoking, pregnancy, stress and anxiety, some medicines like anti-inflammatory painkillers, and a hiatus hernia, wherein a part of the stomach moves up into the chest.
There are different natural remedies for heartburn relief, such as the following:
drinking a glass of water
changing your body position, such as standing up straight after meals, sleeping sideways, and elevating the head and upper body when lying down.
practicing deep breathing exercises
avoiding foods that can cause heartburn
eating meals that are rich in protein
losing weight and eating smaller meals
sipping a baking soda concoction
drinking fennel tea or chamomile tea
adding a mixture of a teaspoon of honey and a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar in a glass of warm water and drinking it 30 minutes before eating
adding herbs such as mint, dill, caraway, horse-radish, bay, fennel, tarragon, marjoram, cumin, cinnamon, ginger, and cardamom in the food that you are cooking
Read more stories about other harmful medicine at DangerousMedicine.com.