“Acidity” refers to a set of symptoms caused by an imbalance between the acid secreting mechanism of the stomach and proximal intestine and the protective mechanisms that ensure their safety.
The stomach normally secretes Hydrochloric acid that is essential in the digestive process. This acid helps in breaking down the food during digestion. When there is excess production of acid by the gastric glands of the stomach, it results in the condition known as Acidity.
Acidity is responsible for symptoms like Dyspepsia, Heartburn and the formation of Ulcers (erosion of the lining of the stomach or intestines). Acidity tends to have a much higher incidence in highly emotional and nervous individuals. Consumption of Alcohol, highly spicy foodstuffs, non-vegetarian diets, and Non Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAID's) also predispose to gastric acidity.
Acidity or Hyperacidity / Gastritis is correlated to “AMLA PITTAM” in Ayurveda. Viruddhahara Sevana (Incompatible Foods), Dustaahara Sevana (Unhygienic & Infected foods), Ritu Vishesha (Seasonal Factors), Desa Vishesha (Geographical Factors), excessive intake of Amla, Vidahi and Pitta aggravating Foods. Spicy food intakes, Supression of natural urges, intake of poisonous substances etc are the causative factors for Amlapittam according to Ayurveda.
Amla pittam is closely interlinked with Ahara, Vihara and Achara; as such “NIDANA PARIVARJANAM (Avoiding the root cause)”constitutes one of the primary line of treatment, along with PATHYASEVANA (Beneficial food consumption & Good Life Style) Measures.
Eliminative Procedures like VAMANAM (Induced Emesis / Vomiting), VIRECHANAM (Purgation) and VASTI (Specialised Enema Procedures) should be adopted as per the need of the case. Shamana Chikitsa (Pacification Treatments) by using Researched Internal Medicines is the common line of treatment. Irritant, Processed, Spicy and Stored food has to be avoided. Foods and drinks consisting mainly of Bitters, Particularly products ofYava and Godhuma (Barley & Wheat) are to be consumed more.