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waist size?

Printed From: Barrett's Support Forum
Category: Barrett's Support Forum
Forum Name: Barrett's Oesophagus
Forum Discription: Your Questions about Barrett's Oesophagus
Printed Date: 20 Sep 2020 at 7:37am

Topic: waist size?
Posted By: RonMac
Subject: waist size?
Date Posted: 16 Mar 2009 at 6:16am
Just a wee question to forum members.
I, admit, to having rather a large middle, and am attending Gym 3 times a week to try and reduce it!
I think that this 'beer belly' is a contributor to the reflux I feel.  I notice that as I move from sitting to standing I often get the burning sensation in the lower gullet.
Apart form this, I am. Of course, a fine figure of a man, with great modesty to boot!
The rest of me is normal, and for 30 years a was a good imitator of  a stick insect, and indeed could fall downs drains, or 'stanks' as Scots call them.
Let us call it middle aged spread.
So, lets be honest.
Who else has got one, and do we think it contributes to the reflux.
Honest answers on a postcard to this forum!

Posted By: gblyth
Date Posted: 16 Mar 2009 at 9:50am
Dear Ron

I have attended several medical presentations regarding underlying factors contributing to Reflux and Barrett's

Nearly all of them refer to a large Body Mass Index and point out the "Beer Belly" to be a major contributing factor.

It is all to do with the pressure on you Lower Oesophageal Sphincter so anything you can do to tighten that up will help. So losing weight in the region of your middle should help.

I understand you should avoid sit ups as these may increase your reflux.

Good luck

I would like to declare that I am a director of SynMed Limited the company that distributes the Halo Treatment from Barrx Medical in the UK.

Geoffrey Blyth

Posted By: GreenEyedMarine
Date Posted: 16 Mar 2009 at 3:18pm


First off, I am new to this site and have greatly enjoyed reading your posts.  The one on the wine as a cure for Barretts almost had me in tears.


The one thing that has helped me remove inches (yep, I'm an American..and still stuck on the inches/feet/yards thing) has been walking for 30 mins twice a day and lifting weights to increase muscle mass. 


The more muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn while you sleep.  I'm all about efficiency, particularly if it's while I'm snoozing. 


Like Geoffrey said, sit ups can cause more acid reflux; so while I’m walking or lifting weights I continually concentrate on keeping “good form” posture, with my abs tight and shoulders back.  I have done some “crunches” that didn’t cause reflux, but have heard they can bother some with GERD.  Ask one of the staff members at your gym to discuss how to do proper (and yes, people do them wrong, so having someone teach you is best) crunches and see how it works for you.


Good luck!..and I bet you are one fine specimen of a man..Wink



p.s. Yes, I have a membership to a gym, My acid reflux was horrible until I started loosing inches off my waist.  I also believe that working out reduces stress, which in turn, also reduces acid production.  All around, a great idea; however sticking to it is the hard part.   

Posted By: RonMac
Date Posted: 16 Mar 2009 at 8:32pm
Thank you for your kind and informative post.
Indeed, I was a fine perfect specimen sometime between my slipping down drain size and later life.  This 'perfect' period must have lasted at least two weeks!
For so many reasons the BMI and waist has to come down.  The heart attack I had was further proof of this, as MI's are now seen as being directly connected to bulging middles!
So, I was working hard and did lose 2.5 stone after heart attack,  but as you suggest so many of us, lose our initiative, and cannot keep up the exercise, so it all came back and with it the reflux leading to Barretts.
I try and walk a mile a day, but work often precludes this.
  So, the three gym sessions per week are the way I am trying to do this waist/weight reduction..
The crunches are, I am told, the best way to 'tone' tummy, but as you suggest may not be good idea for reflux.
So, its an experimentation time for me.  My GI Consultant said that the ONLY way to lose tummy was by cardio vascular exercising.
I have never found exercising anything but mind numbing boring.  I burn the calories, but never reach that 'buzz' I am supoosed to get!
I visit USA often, and was in NYC in May.  I felt quite at home with my tummy!  In UK we call it a  beer belly. And that is something I rarely drink! 
It is an epidemic for USA and UK, couch potatoes, and fast food addicts.  It really has to change!
Thanks again for your post.

Posted By: RonMac
Date Posted: 16 Mar 2009 at 8:35pm
Thanks for the reply.
I suspected as much!
So its the hard Cardio road then!

Posted By: GreenEyedMarine
Date Posted: 17 Mar 2009 at 12:39am


You aren't kidding about the mind numbing cardio.  I have an MP3 player going full blast, tv in front of me with the script going on the bottom so I can read it, and a magazine to boot.  Still hate it.
The weather is starting to break here so I will go back to walking my son (and my dog) to and from school.  When I was still in the USMC I went to a professional school in San Diego.  There was little room for parking the cars on the base, so you ended up walking back and forth from the barracks to the school, to the chow hall, back to the school, back to the...well, you get it.  The walks weren't long, but I spent at least an hour walking every day.  I had broken my ankle before and was not running at the school..however I lost 20 lbs in 6 weeks. (I was watching my diet pretty closely as well).
Just a thought; if you like walking vs. trotting on the tredmill..break up your day with a couple of walks or add them to your cardio.  Either way, I can guarentee it will work.
I know about that 2 weeks of being thin as a rail then..bam!  it's all gone..or all there..mattering on how you look at it.  One min my uniforms fit, the next - I made some seamstress very very busy and still trying to gain ground back to where I was before.
What are 2.5 stones and MI's?  I'm outside of Cleveland, Ohio, and don't travel abroad much since I've left the Marines.  The waistlines throughout the U.S. are expanding.  I have a 10 year old son, so I end up at fast food more than I would like to.  I just savor the menu - sigh - and look for the side salad on the menu. 
Good luck and let me know if you can find any other way to make the cardio less boring. :D
Ohio, U.S.

Posted By: RonMac
Date Posted: 17 Mar 2009 at 4:00am
2.5 stones is British for 35 pounds!   14 pounds in a  stone.
MI is Heart Attack, a Myocardial infraction.
Yep, we are family, separated by the same language!
I skirted San Diego, heading back to Las Vegas a few years ago from LA. 
Like everything, everyone has an opinion that differs on how to exercise.  My Cardio rehabilitation team speak about burst - pause as we exercise the big muscle we call the heart. So, I wear a heart monitor and aim for heart beat of 130 to 140 then drop back to 70 which is where the daily meds, like beta blockers, have me..
Apparently, by doing this burst - pause you maximize the positive effects on the heart.  Therefore I aim to take it up 4 / 5 times  a session holding it steady for 3 mins a time.
I do the treadmill and the bike, then rowing machine before hitting the weights.
I was told yesterday that my sports center now has 4/5 heart attacks a year, whereas it was 1 or 2,  5 years ago.  I can understand that.  We guys, end up competing with ourselves, till we reach the insanity of pushing ourselves beyond our limit. 
It is a sad fact, that I will never run the mile in 3.50.  I will kill myself trying though!(lol)  So, I follow cardio advice, its not the time, its the boring bust - pause.
I do a six monthly treadmill test with Cardiologist in attendance,  and they push me to 200+ bpm, then observe return to normal.  This is all they are interested in!
Needless to say I am a pool of water on the floor!
Such Fun!

Posted By: chrisrob
Date Posted: 17 Mar 2009 at 5:56pm
Hi Ron,
I gained an extra inch or two when I had to give up teaching. It's amazing the calories you use up on your feet all day long.
I took them off again by cycling more.
I put them on again when shortness of breath (PPI side effect) stopped me getting on my bike.
Sure I'll lose them again now I've had my op.
Then I hope to also get back on the bike.
Sure exercise in a gym is boring: but you're amongst some of the best scenery in the world. Surely exercise in the good clean air amongst the heather on the hills will help?
Anyway, good luck with getting the fine figure of a man back again.

Posted By: GreenEyedMarine
Date Posted: 17 Mar 2009 at 10:29pm
Chris, What PPI are you taking?  Just curious..I just switched from Prilosec to Nexium and am wondering what side effects people are having..

Posted By: RonMac
Date Posted: 18 Mar 2009 at 7:11am
I found the Omezoprole (Prilosec) to be increasing my heartburn, gas, to an unacceptable level.
My consultant has suggested I try others, and has suggested to my doctor  three other PPI options. 
I see Doc tomorrow to discuss which one I am going to try.
I always feel that its better to start with small dosage and work up to a maintenance dose, which will be different to different people.
Do you have Rennies Delfatine in US?  This is seen by some GI Specialists as the best OTC immediate relief along with Gaviscon to heartburn / reflux symptoms.
I can say that they help a bit.  Certainly, delfatine is easier to carry in pocket than Gaviscon in a bottle or sachet!

Posted By: chrisrob
Date Posted: 18 Mar 2009 at 8:02am
Hi Michelle,

Two of the biggest aggrevators of reflux appear to be weight and stress so I'm glad you're attempting to reduce both of those.

I have tried various PPIs. They have different names in UK than US but have been on Lansoprazole, Pantoprazole but mainly Omeprazole. They all seemed the same to me.

I was worried about side effects. There are some shown on the box inserts with the tablets but there are others which aren't. I researched a list form the net which I posted here: - but further to that am now convinced, the worst side effect is the hypochlorhydria (low stomach acid) which means the essential minerals are not being absorbed into the body - particularly calcium (beware osteoporosis), iron (beware anaemia) and selenium (beware depression).

I am lucky (I hope) that I have just had the fundoplication operation (Monday) and so far haven't had any indication I shall need to take any more PPIs. But, of course, it's early days yet and I'll see what the coming weeks bring as I go through the recovery process. So far, touch wood, it seems to be going OK.

All the best


Posted By: Moggs
Date Posted: 18 Mar 2009 at 6:01pm
Hi Again RonMac
You can get gaviscon in tablet form which you suck. I find the lemon ones are best for me and work better & quiocker than the liquid form. Perhaps it's because with sucking them the gaviscon goes much slower down yr gullet so sooths it more oon the way down. Also it's easy to just break off afew tablets & slip them in yr bag or (for men) wallet, so you've always got them with you.

Posted By: RonMac
Date Posted: 18 Mar 2009 at 6:04pm
Many thanks.  I have seen them at supermarket check outs, so must investiagte!

Posted By: GreenEyedMarine
Date Posted: 19 Mar 2009 at 2:23am


Thanks for the education on the terms.  I had a Marine that was from the UK when I was teaching..we had alot of fun with the different terms.  He kept insisting that the British gave us a perfectly good language and the Americans have wasted no time in "f-ing" it up. 
The Prilosec (omeperezole) wasn't working, so the doc has started me on (eomeperezole) Nexium.  I hope that there is more difference in the medicine than the one letter in the name. 
I have never heard of Rennies Delfatine, however will check out how/where it is sold out here.
I am, however a little concerned about something.  One thing I have been taught over and over again (in fact, just last week by my doctor and gym staff) is that your max heart rate should be 220 minus your age.  So unless your 20, you shouldn't be reaching 200 bpm. Confused Please, PRETTY please, check with your heart doc before pushing that hard again.  Could be why your gym is seeing more MIs?
Congrats!!!  You are so lucky to have had the op.  If the hearburn isn't under control by next year (as long as I am keeping up my end of the deal, that is) I am going to start begging.  Let me know how it progresses..k? 
I have found another form of stress relief/exercise: gardening.  Wow, had I known that gardening took up so much energy and killing weeds is so theraputic I would have done this years ago!
Thank you.  I love this site!  I have felt so alone for the past 6 months it was driving me nuts! 

Posted By: RonMac
Date Posted: 19 Mar 2009 at 5:55am
Thank you for your pulse concern.
II only reach that under Cardiologist supervision, while on the treadmill test.  Under Gym conditions, allowing for Beta Blocker effects, I reach 130-140,  hold for a minute, then drop back to 80-90, only to do it all again 5/6 times a treadmill session.
I did ask Cardiologist why the seemed intent in killing me, but he assured me that as he was watching multiple lines on the screen, he would see my impending end before i did, and more than likely slow me down!(g)
He went on to explain that he was interested in my recovery rate, and as long as that was 'normal'  I was OK.   So, they 'kill' you to see that you are OK.  Makes sense?
Of course fact is , my recovery rate is much better post heart attack, than it would have been pre heart attack.
I now have a wee metal stent where the narrowing was in the artery.
I agree, its great to have a forum where we can chat ad naseum about our Barretts, and other ailments.
Thanks for caring.


To do is to be--Neitzche
To be is to do--Descartes
Do be Do be Do--Sinatra
To Be is to Burp........Reflux

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