Is Bacterial Overgrowth Causing Your Heartburn or GERD?

How many times have you run to the store for more medication because you seriously feel like you could breathe fire out of your throat?

Too many, I’m sure.

You just finished your 2nd slice of pizza or scarfed down the best Mexican burrito in town, but then BAM you feel that burning sensation in your chest again.

This isn’t a new feeling for you, so of course you’re prepared.

Reaching for your Tums or Pepto-Bismol, you’re feeling grateful for this symptom relief medication.

Americans spend over 11 billion dollars on these proton pump inhibitor medications every year. But is your money going to good use when it’s not fixing the root cause of your problem?

What if you knew these medication could even be adding to your acid reflux?

You might be temporarily relieving your symptoms, but you’ll have to head straight back to the pharmacy to stock up on more medication once your acid reflux symptoms rear their nasty heads again.

With any disease, it’s important to treat the root cause of your symptoms – not only to get permanent relief, but prevent serious conditions down the road.

Untreated gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can lead to serious health issues.

These health concerns include:

  • Esophagitis
  • Barrett’s esophagus
  • Strictures
  • Ulcers
  • Worsening of asthma
  • Esophageal cancer

The Sting About Heartburn and GERD



Doctors are sure about one thing – the symptoms of heartburn or gastroesophageal reflux disease, chronic heartburn, happens when your lower esophageal sphincter (LES) muscle relaxes at the wrong time, sending stomach acid back up into your esophagus.

This is the cause of your heartburn symptoms.

Your stomach acid is very acidic and your esophagus doesn’t contain the protective lining for this acidity like your stomach. This is why you feel that burning sensation throughout your esophagus.

But what doctors have been so focused on is trying to reduce the acid in your stomach, not why your LES is relaxing out of turn.

Your LES , which connects your esophagus to your stomach, is supposed to open only when you swallow food, but in a case where there is increased intra-abdominal pressure in your stomach, your LES relaxes and regurgitates stomach acid.

Now, let’s talk about why there’s an increased pressure in your stomach.

Why Your Medications Actually Add to Your Acid Reflux Symptoms

There’s actually a common misconception that excess stomach acid is the cause of your acid reflux symptoms.

But we now know the true cause of heartburn and GERD is a forced opening of your lower esophageal sphincter due to intra-abdominal pressure.

So, why have the drug companies failed us?

They’ve flooded the pharmaceutical market with drugs that actually add to the fire of your symptoms.

These medications cause a decrease or neutralization in stomach acid production, but your stomach acid is essential for proper digestion and killing off any unwanted bacteria.

Stomach acid is like the bouncer at a club, monitoring the number of people who come in and out.

Just like the bouncer, your stomach acid prevents any overpopulation of bacteria in your stomach simply because most bacteria can’t survive in such an acidic pH level.

This is why eliminating this natural and important production of hydrochloric acid causes an imbalance of gut bacteria.

When you have an overgrowth of bacteria in your small intestines (SIBO) this bacteria produces an abnormal amount of gas and bloating in your gut.

This gas adds to your intra-abdominal pressure causing your lower esophageal sphincter to open, allowing stomach acid to reflux into your esophagus.

This is why your medications aren’t actually eliminating the cause, they are adding to it.

SIBO Causes Acid Reflux

Neutralizing or eliminating the production of stomach acid leads to an overgrowth of bacteria.

Since stomach acid is essential for proper digestion and absorption of carbohydrates, this imbalance leaves you with an improper breakdown of carbs in your stomach as well.

And what do bad bacteria feed off of?


There’s the vicious cycle again – Your bad bacteria feed on improper digestion of carbohydrates, which promotes bacterial overgrowth.

These bacteria start to release more and more gas, which turns into an increase in intra-abdominal pressure in your stomach causing your lower esophageal sphincter to reflux acid into the esophagus.

Your heartburn symptoms kick in, so of course, it’s time to pop your antacid medication – restarting the cycle.

There is a significant relationship between heartburn medications, decreased stomach acid, and SIBO.

The following studies have proven your heartburn symptoms are the result of SIBO and your acid reflux medications are promoting these symptoms:

Kill the Burn: Rebalance Your Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth

You need to break the cycle of your painful heartburn symptoms and treating the cause is the only way.

This cycle is kicked off, unbeknownst to most, by your acid reflux medications, which reduces stomach acid. Having low stomach acid leads to an overgrowth of unwanted bacteria, malabsorption of carbohydrates, increased gas/pressure in your gut.

You need your stomach acid to keep a wrap on any unwanted bacteria growing in there to prevent intra-abdominal pressure on your lower esophageal sphincter.

Your LES is the door that allows your stomach acid to regurgitate back up into the esophagus when there is too much pressure.

Keep your LES door locked by reducing your small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. Atrantil does just that – it breaks the cycle of untreated bacterial overgrowth and helps improve digestion.

Atrantil targets these methane-producing bacteria and eliminates them for good.

The natural ingredients specifically feed your good gut bacteria and get your digestive system back on track by relieving you of constipation, diarrhea, bloating, gas, and abdominal cramps.

By |November 29th, 2018|Atrantil, Microbiome|7 Comments
  • Sandra D. says:

    I am an RN and have suffered for years .This is the best explanation I have read ! I am very very bloated and uncomfortable with terrible flatulence . Also lactose intolerant and cannot tolerate onions cabbage, garlic or Red wine .
    My 32 yo daughter has IBS and GERD and now my son recently shared he has the same problems. Is this hereditary?
    I have read Brenda Watson’s newsletters and her book “Skinny Gut”. which recommends a very strict low carb diet and no sugar to change the balance of bacteroideres and firmicutes. Do you agree ? Seems like just starting Atrantil is only one part of the treatment.
    I started taking Protonix which has stopped the burning but the bloating is worse. I also take Culturelle but have not noticed any improvement.
    Yesterday a carrot lodged in my upper esophagus and this is not the first time .
    I have 3 questions.
    My problem is so severe I am worried. Do I stop the protonix ?
    Do I need an endoscopy?
    Would a stool analysis would be beneficial before I start Atrantil?
    Sandra Downer RN CDE

    • Atrantil says:

      Hi Sandra,

      Thank you for the feedback. We are glad you enjoyed our blog and are sorry you are suffering from adverse symptoms.

      We actually did not do stool analysis in our clinical trials. Instead, we used the criteria that Xifaxan used in their clinical trials and focused on clinical improvement of symptoms. Using symptomatic improvement in our clinical trials we had over 88% improvement.

      When taking Atrantil we recommend sticking to a low carb diet and stopping probiotics until symptoms have been resolved. Once symptoms have been relieved and you have reduced to a maintenance dose, you can slowly add back in the carbs and probiotics.

      As for taking Protonix, we really recommend talking to your health care provider to see what is best for you. Also, if you have not had an endoscopy before and you are having food lodged in your esophagus, we recommend seeing a gastroenterologist, who will perform an EGD to make sure you are not having any obstructions. We hope this helps to answer all your questions.

      Please let us know if we can be of further assistance.

      Thank you and best wishes,

      Team Atrantil

  • Mo says:

    This product has changed my life in an amazing way! I have suffered from IBS and heartburn for years. I took Atrantil for 1 month and will be purchasing again! Like by the end of the day! Thank you so much for such a wonderful product!!

    • Atrantil says:

      Hi Mo,

      Thank you so much for being a valued customer and for your feedback! We are so happy you are feeling better and wish you the very best.

      Thank you,

      Team Atrantil

  • teng ma says:

    Can I take this product with fiber or prebiotics

    • Atrantil says:

      Hi Teng ma,

      Thank you for contacting us! Yes, you can take Atrantil with fiber and prebiotics. In fact, in the colon, Atrantil acts as a prebiotic as well! We hope this helps to clarify. Please let us know if we can be of further assistance.

      Thank you and best wishes,

      Team Atrantil

  • khalil says:

    i would like to ask can i person have symptoms of both GERD and SIBO

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