Belching, hiccuping and related issues are common complaints among patients. Dr. David Johnson of Eastern Virginia Medical School explains the distinction between normal and abnormal belching, and discusses the behavioral component of what's known as supragastric belching -- meaning it isn't serving an important physiological function. Yet, belching and the related condition of air swallowing aren't easily treated. Interventions could include drugs or speech therapy. Hiccups, meanwhile, are associated with a spasm of the intercostal muscles and diaphragm. Hiccups are common, but a persistent issue can signal a serious health problem and should be evaluated by an expert.
Sauerkraut, aside from being loaded with vitamins and nutrients, contains the amino acid glutamine, which is critical for gastrointestinal health and repairing gut mucosa. Sauerkraut also has many probiotic characteristics that help protect against disease and improve immune function.
Low doses of naltrexone appears to be effective in treating Crohn's disease, perhaps by boosting a patient's immunity, a small study found. One researcher said additional study is needed but there is hope that "a new era of treatment may be on the horizon."
Irritable bowel syndrome affects 10% to 15% of Americans, but it can be difficult to diagnose because symptoms and triggers vary from patient to patient. One expert suggests patients keep a food diary to identify their specific trigger foods.