Read below to learn what you need to know, to understand Gripe Water….
Joined: 01 February 2005
Location: United States
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Posted: 20 October 2005 at 7:54pm | IP Logged
One of the main ingredients in gripe water is sodium bicarbonate (baking soda), which is a natural antacid. Unfortunately, on its own sodium bicarb is not a very good antacid, which is why it is not sold as such. The reason for this is that, while it very effectively neutralizes stomach acid, it also activates or “turns on” the acid producing proton pumps in the stomach lining, causing them to produce even more acid. Magnesium hydroxide and calcium carbonate are more often used as antacids because they neutralize acid without turning on the proton pumps.
When combined with a Proton Pump Inhibitor (PPI) such as lansoprazole or omeprazole, sodium bicarbonate actually enhances the action of these drugs. In order for a PPI to inhibit or “block” proton pumps, the pumps must be in an active state. So when a PPI is combined with sodium bicarbonate, the bicarb neutralizes the acid, protecting the drug from degradation in the acid, and turns on the proton pumps, which are then blocked by the PPI. Zegerid is an FDA approved form of such a combination. It contains omeprazole, sodium bicarbonate, and a peach/mint flavoring.
Because gripe water contains sodium bicarbonate, which can actually cause more acid to be produced, it often provides temporary relief from the symptoms of reflux, but then causes it to come back even worse than before. For these reasons, I do not recommend the use of gripe water. But if it works for you and your child, that is great.