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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Stomach Acid and Absorption

There is a bit of a myth that we don't have any stomach acid to break things down. This is not true. Let me remind you of our surgery.

You have two "stomachs". Your old stomach is called your "remnant stomach". Your remnant stomach is always functioning, creating stomach acids or juices and is spitting them out. Your new pouch produces very minimal stomach acid. That is why you must chew and chew your food, to help break up your food since your food will no longer meet up with the acids in the stomach for a long period of processing. Your food travels down and meets up the stomach acid where the two join up in the intestines.

So yes your food does mix in with stomach acids - but for a far briefer time than before and in a different place than before. So yes, it is possible that you still suffer from any reflux after surgery. For most, RNY helps decrease it and for many it is no longer an issue...but for some, yes reflux can be a problem still.

When it comes to absorption, we don't absorb until later in the intestines. We completely bypass the duodenum which is responsible for absorbing most minerals and vitamins a b d and k, iron and calcium. (Hence the tendency for us to be low in these). The old stomach also produced a substance called "intrinsic factor" that helped us absorbed b-12 and now we no longer have that as hence constant supplementation of b12. Thats' a basic in absorption for you.

Here's a great picture for you!!!