The Surprising Link Between Hiatal Hernias and Respiratory Issues
Are you someone who suffers from respiratory problems like asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)?
If so, you might be surprised to learn that there's a possible connection between these issues and a condition you might not have heard of before: hiatal hernias.
What Are Hiatal Hernias
Hiatal hernias occur when a portion of the stomach slides up into the chest through a small opening in the diaphragm, the muscle that separates the chest from the abdomen. While not everyone with a hiatal hernia experiences symptoms, those who do might notice heartburn, chest pain, or difficulty swallowing.
What you might not know is that hiatal hernias can also affect your respiratory system. Here's how:
The diaphragm is an important muscle for breathing. When you inhale, the diaphragm contracts and moves downward, allowing your lungs to expand and fill with air. When you exhale, the diaphragm relaxes and moves upward, pushing air out of your lungs.
However, when you have a hiatal hernia, the stomach can push up against the diaphragm and interfere with its movement. This can make it harder for you to breathe, especially if you have an underlying respiratory condition.
In fact, research has shown that hiatal hernias are more common in people with respiratory issues than in the general population.
A study published in the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology found that 43% of people with COPD also had a hiatal hernia, compared to just 11% of people without COPD.
Another study published in the journal Chest found that people with asthma were more likely to have a hiatal hernia than people without asthma.
The researchers hypothesized that the pressure changes in the chest caused by asthma attacks could contribute to the development of hiatal hernias.
So, what does all of this mean for you?
If you have a respiratory condition like asthma, COPD, or chronic bronchitis and also experience symptoms of acid reflux or heartburn, it's worth exploring further.
By being aware of the possible link between these issues, you can take an active role in your own health!
5 Lifestyle Tips to Help Manage Linked Symptoms
1. Eat smaller, more frequent meals: Large meals can put pressure on your stomach and diaphragm, worsening symptoms of both hiatal hernias and respiratory issues. Instead, try eating smaller meals throughout the day to avoid overeating.
2. Avoid trigger foods: Certain foods can trigger acid reflux and heartburn, which can worsen symptoms of hiatal hernias and respiratory issues. Common trigger foods include spicy or fatty foods, caffeine, and alcohol. Try to limit your intake of these foods or avoid them altogether.
3. Elevate the head of your bed: When you sleep, gravity can help keep stomach acid from flowing back up into your esophagus. Try elevating the head of your bed by 6-8 inches to promote better digestion and reduce acid reflux symptoms.
4. Exercise regularly: Regular exercise can help strengthen your diaphragm and improve your breathing. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise, like walking or cycling, most days of the week.
5. Take all-natural supplements: All-natural supplements like Hiatal Health and Resp Relief can help support your digestive and respiratory health. Hiatal Health targets the discomfort of heartburn, acid reflux, and indigestion that is frequently triggered by hiatal hernias or esophageal weakness. And Resp Relief can help support open airways and promote relief of bronchial and sinus inflammation.
Improving Respiratory Health by Improving Gut Health
By making these simple lifestyle changes, you may be able to manage your symptoms of both hiatal hernias and respiratory issues more effectively. And by adding all-natural supplements like Hiatal Health and Resp Relief to your routine, you may be able to provide additional support for your digestive and respiratory health.