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Antacid tablet without sugar or artificial sweeteners?
Old 03-21-2015, 12:42 PM   #1
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Antacid tablet without sugar or artificial sweeteners?

Anyone know of a sugar-free and artificial sweetener-free antacid other than baking soda? I currently take a generic form of Tums to control a repetitive, hacking cough which is caused by acid reflux. But I don't want to get cavities from the sugar which is in the tablets. I searched the shelf for sugar free antacids and found zero. Asked the pharmacist, he said he knows of none. I see from a websearch that there are Tums with artificial sweeteners (aspartame, etc). I want to avoid them too. I had been using baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) with good results, but discovered it raised my blood pressure to 160 over 105, due to the sodium content, and the large amounts I needed to take to control the acid. I usually only need the tablets at night when lying down. The current sugar-containing tablets work great to control the acid, but I just don't want to end up at the dentist with lots of cavities. I have taken Prevacid with good results for acid and the cough, but I don't want the hormonal changes that Prevacid causes. Still looking for the elusive sugar-free and artificial sweetener-free antacid, that doesn't raise my blood pressure. Thanks
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Old 03-21-2015, 03:52 PM   #2
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Well, the active ingredient in Tums is calcium carbonate, so I suppose you could chew up chalk. Probably not a great answer. But Tums and other calcium carbonate- based antacids have a lot of chalk in them (1000 MG), and I'm guessing that any product with that much chalk isn't going to be popular if it doesn't have natural or artificial flavors.

These capsules have calcium carbonate in them, and have no sugar. But I don't know if they'd release the calcium carbonate where you need it, and I doubt there's enough of the stuff to do the trick for you.

Tums and a quick brushing of the chops?
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Old 03-21-2015, 04:15 PM   #3
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What about omeprazole (Prilosec)? It's over the counter, pretty cheap, and if you have acid reflex that lasts for weeks or longer, it does a way better job than antacids in my experience.

You may want to ask your doctor about it.
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Old 03-21-2015, 04:57 PM   #4
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Break the Tums in half or quarters, and swallow the pieces without chewing. Or perhaps consider taking a calcium or magnesium supplement at bedtime.
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Old 03-21-2015, 05:43 PM   #5
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I use Tums sugar-free antacids. they are sweetened with sorbitol (which does not cause tooth decay and a small amount of aspartame (which I would prefer they omit). Not ideal but works for me (I buy them from amazon http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1).
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Old 03-21-2015, 05:44 PM   #6
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You can get food-grade calcium carbonate power at your local home brewing store or from an online store. Calcium Carbonate : Northern Brewer
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Old 03-22-2015, 07:30 AM   #7
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Thanks for the ideas!
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Old 03-22-2015, 11:27 AM   #8
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You can get food-grade calcium carbonate power at your local home brewing store or from an online store. Calcium Carbonate : Northern Brewer
You beat me to it, but I wonder how one would take it. It is a fine powder, and not very soluble (IIRC, a teaspoon takes several quarts to get it to dissolve). It might be a bit like the cinnamon challenge!

But if you can get it down, it should do the job, that's the active ingredient, the other stuff is the delivery package - which might still be an important part of getting it to where it needs to do its job?

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Old 03-22-2015, 03:08 PM   #9
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Some natural remedies that work for us are bananas, cabbage or cabbage juice, potatoes and peppermint tea.
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Old 03-22-2015, 03:16 PM   #10
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The biggest aid for me is simply to stop eating after supper. Late evening snacks are brutal if you have a tendency toward GERD.
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Old 03-22-2015, 03:24 PM   #11
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You beat me to it, but I wonder how one would take it. It is a fine powder, and not very soluble (IIRC, a teaspoon takes several quarts to get it to dissolve).
The amount in a Tums Extra tablet (750 mg) would be less than a quarter of a teaspoon.
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Old 03-22-2015, 03:57 PM   #12
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I have a very mild case of acid reflux. It was much worse when I was w*rking. I used to do the TUMS routine. I even had an Rx for Prilosec. I was able to discontinue the Prilosec after a year. I modified my diet to only eating acid reflux triggering foods once in a while.

These days, I rarely have any problems. Spicy or acidic foods will still trigger it, but nowhere as bad as before.
I use Kirkland Signature brand Maximum Strength Acid Reducer, Ranitidine Tablets USP 150 mg. I bought them on Amazon.
The label says no sodium or sugar added. They are manufactured by Perrigo, for Costco Wholesale Corporation.

Natural remedies for me are crackers, yogurt, cottage cheese, or a slice of plain white bread. Ginger ale is also a good stomach settling thing.
If these fail, I take an acid reducer.

I also make sure I have at least two hours between eating and laying prone. This is very important.

Mr B takes Omeprazole (Rx) 20 mg capsules, 1 per day, as prevention, 1 hour before meals. He has Barrett's esophagus. He has no problems with any kind of food ever.
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Old 03-22-2015, 04:40 PM   #13
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I looked for alternatives to antacids, and have come up with these, along with the companies I buy them from. I'm sure you can find them from other places. A dietician friend suggested them for issues DH was having, and they've all but eliminated Tums from our medicine cabinet:


Puritan's Pride: Papaya Enzyme and/or Multi-Enzyme Formula and/or Charcoal Capsules


Vitacost: Mega Digestive Enzymes and/or Gay Enzyme


Hyland's Gas (natural relief for gas and upset stomach)


Good luck.
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Old 03-22-2015, 04:54 PM   #14
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I'm concerned about indiscriminate calcium antacid use. Are you aware that in order to control stomach acid enough to treat esophagitis, one needs to take antacids every 2-3 hours? That risks side effects from excessive calcium intake, including kidney stones. There was a report of a 61 yr old who took 3-4 tabs of Tums ultra and a vitamin D supplement daily and became critically ill due to a very high calcium level.

I am not aware of any adverse effects on the human endocrine system reported with Prevacid or Prilosec, so I'm not sure what hormonal effects you are referring to. Excess calcium will affect parathyroid hormone levels.

Reflux is increased with alcohol, caffeine, increased weight, and eating shortly before bedtime. I've been on and off Prilosec for a couple of years. I'm trying to increase my exercise and watch my diet better, as weight reduction will make a huge difference, as it did 4 years ago when I lost 30 pounds. (I have to lose it again.)

Avoiding the excess calcium will also solve your sugar concerns.

Be aware of any drug interactions in either case.


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Old 03-22-2015, 06:20 PM   #15
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DH likes yogurt if his tummy isn't 100%. Does that help anybody else?
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Old 03-22-2015, 07:25 PM   #16
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TUMS Ultra 1000 has 1.5 grams of sugar per tab. Unless you are eating these around the clock (which would probably lead to kidney stones and other problems), how could that little sugar cause cavities? Plenty of fruits and vegetables have more sugar than that...a serving of broccoli has 2.5 g sugar, an orange 7 g, a banana 14 g, an apple 19 g. Worrying about TUMS seems like small potatoes.
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Old 03-22-2015, 08:20 PM   #17
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DH likes yogurt if his tummy isn't 100%. Does that help anybody else?
Definitely yogurt to soothe a bad stomach or counteract acid. I blend a can of peaches (minus the juice) with plain Greek yogurt. Grind first, then liquefy. Great stuff !
I'm on antibiotics for 10 days, and have had a mild indegestion reaction to them if taken on an empty stomach. I drink 4 ounces of my chilled peach smoothie, pop the pill, and have no problems at all.
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Old 03-22-2015, 08:51 PM   #18
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...Reflux is increased with alcohol, caffeine, increased weight, and eating shortly before bedtime. I've been on and off Prilosec for a couple of years...

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Can one be on Prilosec indefinitely?
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Old 03-23-2015, 08:46 AM   #19
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Thanks for the replies! I'm definitely going to try some of the natural remedies. Is it OK to take the remedy immediately before lying down to sleep?
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Old 03-23-2015, 09:02 AM   #20
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Thanks for the replies! I'm definitely going to try some of the natural remedies. Is it OK to take the remedy immediately before lying down to sleep?
It all depends on how bad your acid reflux is and what you have eaten that triggers it.
I generally wait for 2 hours before laying prone after eating anything. My case is mild. Yours sounds more advanced.

Have you consulted a doctor ? Erosion of the esophagus is serious stuff. That advice came from Mr B.
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