Navigation Links
Losing Weight May Ease Chronic Heartburn
Date:5/21/2013

By Kathleen Doheny
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, May 20 (HealthDay News) -- Obese and overweight men and women who suffer from heartburn often report relief when they lose weight, a new study shows.

The researchers tracked the effects of weight loss over a year in patients who had a persistent form of heartburn known as gastroesophageal reflux, or GERD.

"If you lose weight, you will have improvements in your reflux symptoms," said study author Dr. Preetika Sinh, a gastroenterology fellow at the University of Kansas School of Medicine. In women, but not men, long-term exercise also helped reduce symptoms, she added.

Sinh was scheduled to present the findings Monday at the Digestive Disease Week annual meeting in Orlando, Fla.

Previous research also has linked weight loss with a decline in GERD symptoms.

Heartburn, or acid indigestion, is very common, with more than 60 million Americans having it at least once a month, according to the American College of Gastroenterology. Stomach acid flows backward up into the esophagus, and the burn begins.

GERD, the more frequent, chronic form of heartburn, can lead to complications if left untreated, including a narrowing of the esophagus or precancerous changes in the esophageal lining.

Sinh evaluated more than 200 men and women with an average age of 46. At the start of the study, all were overweight or obese, with an average weight of 220 pounds.

At the beginning of the study, 38 percent had heartburn scores severe enough to be classified as GERD. After six months, the patients' average weight decreased to 183 pounds, and only 16 percent still had GERD.

During the next six months, 172 of the patients regained weight, and the percentage of those with heartburn increased again, from 16 percent to 22 percent. Even a small amount of weight gain -- less than 5 percent of their initial weight -- led to worsening symptoms, Sinh found.

Sinh then focused on the 41 patients who didn't regain their weight and found that the percentage with heartburn continued to decline and the symptoms continued to improve.

As part of the weight-loss program, the patients were told to aim for five hours a week of moderate activity such as walking or jogging. The average amount logged was a little less than four hours, Sinh said.

In women, but not men, the exercise also helped to improve heartburn.

Sinh said she can't explain the mechanisms behind either the weight loss or the exercise, or why the exercise seemed to help only women. Although the study found a link between weight loss, exercise and GERD, it did not establish a cause-and-effect relationship.

While the use of heartburn medications is common, Sinh said she can't say if the men and women improved enough to go off medication, since she didn't track those results. Only about 5 percent of the men and women were on heartburn medications in the first place, she said.

One expert said the study had some strengths.

To start with, a relatively large number of people were studied, said Dr. Lauren Gerson, an associate professor of medicine and gastroenterology at Stanford University School of Medicine.

Besides just asking patients to report symptoms, she said, "it would be useful to have pH studies [done to evaluate GERD] to document improvement in overall pH scores after weight loss."

Even so, she said, the findings echo those of an even larger study, published in 2006, that found that weight gain -- even in those with normal weight -- was linked to new heartburn symptoms and weight reduction was linked to a decline in symptoms.

Whether weight loss can help those with heartburn discontinue reflux medications remains an unanswered question, Gerson said.

Because this study was presented at a medical meeting, the data and conclusions should be viewed as preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.

More information

To learn more about heartburn, visit the American College of Gastroenterology.

SOURCES: Preetika Sinh, M.D., gastroenterology fellow, University of Kansas School of Medicine, Kansas City, Kan.; Lauren Gerson, M.D., associate professor, medicine and gastroenterology, Stanford University School of Medicine; May 20, 2013, presentation, Digestive Disease Week, Orlando


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. For Adults Who Are Losing Their Minds: Announcing BrainTrain’s New Cognitive Training/EEG Brainwave Biofeedback Combo
2. Scott R. Tischler of Tischler Brothers Fitness unveils the 4 rules to losing weight while going out
3. Dr. Atul Madan Explains The Difficulties of Losing Weight Just by Diet and Exercise
4. Scott R. Tischler Unveils the 5 Keys to Losing 90 Pounds By the End of Summer
5. The Miracle of Lap Band Surgery; Take On the Challenge of Losing Weight Quickly and Safely
6. In A Study, People Prefer Using Virtual Reality For Losing Weight
7. Money Makes A Great Motivator For Losing Weight
8. Scott Tischler unveils the secrets to losing weight by beach season and keeping New Year's Eve resolutions.
9. Money talks when it comes to losing weight, Mayo Clinic study finds
10. Cancer in African Americans: Gap closing for some sites; Widening for others
11. Sync Fitness is Giving Away a Book on Losing Weight and Wearing Skinny Jeans
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Losing Weight May Ease Chronic Heartburn
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... First Choice Emergency Room , the ... Ogunleye, as the Medical Director of its new Mesquite-Samuell Farm facility. , “We ... new Mesquite location,” said Dr. James M. Muzzarelli, Executive Medical Director of First Choice ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... , ... On Friday, June 10, Van Mitchell, Secretary of the Maryland Department ... in recognition of their exemplary accomplishments in worksite health promotion. , The Wellness at ... Wellness Symposium at the BWI Marriott in Linthicum Heights. iHire was one of 42 ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... , ... Those who have experienced traumatic events may suffer from a complex ... as drug or alcohol abuse, as a coping mechanism. To avoid this pain and ... a traumatic event. , Trauma sufferers tend to feel a range of emotions, from ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... The Pulmonary Hypertension ... that it will receive two significant new grants to support its work to ... its 25th anniversary by recognizing patients, medical professionals and scientists for their work ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Comfort Keepers® of San Diego, CA is ... Road To Recovery® program to drive cancer patients to and from their cancer treatments. ... the highest quality of life and ongoing independence. Getting to and from medical ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... Mass. , June 24, 2016   Pulmatrix, ... pharmaceutical company developing innovative inhaled drugs, announced today that ... Russell Investments reconstituted its comprehensive set of ... "This is an important milestone for Pulmatrix," ... will increase shareholder awareness of our progress in developing ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016  Arkis BioSciences, a leading innovator ... more durable cerebrospinal fluid treatments, today announced it ... funding is led by Innova Memphis, followed by ... private investors.  Arkis, new financing will accelerate the ... market release of its in-licensed Endexo® technology. ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016 Research and Markets ... Market - Forecast to 2022" report to their offering. ... method for the patients with kidney failure, it replaces the ... from the patient,s blood and thus the treatment helps to ... chloride in balance. Increasing number of ESRD ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: