Swelling, Bloating and Back Pain

Interview with Carolyn Dean, MD, ND.

1. In general, what causes swelling?
Several things can cause swelling. Toxins in the body are diluted with fluids and can cause swelling. Because of gravity, the fluids tend to accumulate in the feet. Another reason for swelling is lack of proper minerals. Minerals are required in the cells to drive chemical reactions that keep our body going, the minerals, then pull fluids into the cells to help with the reactions and to flush out the toxic end products of chemical reactions. But if you don’t have enough minerals to draw fluids into the cells, those fluids can accumulate as swelling in the feet and even cellulite. For example, most people are deficient in magnesium and don’t get their RDA which is already very low. Emotional and physical stress, toxins, alcohol, coffee, soda’s, etc., deplete magnesium even further. Magnesium is a natural detoxifier.

2. Have you ever heard of a person’s feet becoming swollen from drinking too much alcohol? Does beer have a particular effect?
Yes, but the swelling is often hidden under a general body weight gain. Beer is made with yeast and some people are sensitive to this, or even allergic. Or they can have yeast overgrowth from taking antibiotics and the yeast in their intestines cross reacts with the yeast in beer. This can make people appear drunk faster and cause pain and swelling in their joints, including the feet. The yeast toxins themselves (there are 178 produced) have to be diluted and this fluid retention shows up as swelling in the feet.

3. How much beer would have to be consumed for this to happen?
That’s very individual, but the more yeast overgrowth a person has the less beer required.

4. Is the swelling in this case temporary? At what point should a person see a doctor?
It should be temporary, but if a person is a chronic beer drinker, they will also experience weight gain and liver damage and doctors will blame the swelling on liver damage. There is also protein deficiency in chronic beer drinkers because they get their calories from beer and don’t eat enough protein. This type of liver damage is called fatty liver. Protein deficiency can build up fluid in the body causing swollen feet.

5. Is foot swelling a dangerous situation that would require the person to quit drinking beer?
As above, it can indicate liver damage and fatty liver, which makes it a dangerous situation.

Bloating and Back Pain

1. Is there a connection between bloating and back pain? Is one the result of the other?
There can be a connection when the bloating is high up in the abdomen pressing on the liver and spleen and the diaphragm. Pressure on these structures can cause referred pain into the back and up into the shoulders that can be misinterpreted as structural pain.

2. If a person experiences these symptoms, should they see a doctor?
If the two symptoms occur together the first steps should be to relieve the bloating.

3. Is bloating temporary? And if the bloating goes away, will the pain then go away?

Bloating is usually dietary.
Drinking too much carbonated water
Swallowing air
Eating lots of sugar and carbohydrate products feeds yeast and bacteria in the intestines, which produce gas.
Eating when stressed and not digesting.
Drinking lots of cold water with a meal.

Medical Disclaimer:

The ideas, procedures and suggestions contained in this article are not intended as a substitute for consulting with your physician. All matters regarding your physical health require medical supervision. Neither the author nor the publisher shall be liable or responsible for any loss, injury or damage allegedly arising from any information or suggestion in this article. The opinions expressed in this article represent the personal views of the author and not the publisher.

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