Low stomach acid test


I am hypo and taking 150mcg levo but still have symptoms.

I have an appointment with my G.P. tomorrow to ask for a referral to St. Thomas for an active B12 test but I also want to ask about low stomach acid and if this could be the reason why I was low on B12 folate and Vitamin D when I had them tested earlier in the year. My stomach symptoms are getting worse, I am constantly bloated and burping and know this can be symptoms of either high or low stomach acid.

Does anyone know if the G.P. can test for this and if so what test do I ask for.

Many thanks browny

Last edited by

13 Replies

  • You can do a simple at-home test for low stomach acid using bicarbonate of soda and water. See this page :


    It probably isn't super-accurate, but its easy and does no harm, and could be educational.

    You could always test yourself by trying Betaine HCl + Pepsin 600mg capsules. I buy these :


    but they are easily available online from loads of different suppliers and manufacturers.

    Take a couple of bites of a main evening meal, then take 1 capsule of Betaine HCl & Pepsin, then finish your meal. See if it helps over the next few hours.

    The next night try a couple of bites of food then take 1 capsule, then about halfway through your meal take another capsule. See how you feel after that.

    I take two capsules for a big meal, and one for a smaller meal, but I know that some people take loads! It's worth googling for info about this. You will get information and treatment faster than you ever would from a doctor.

  • Hi humanbean.

    Many thanks for the links, I will do the burp test tomorrow, if the Betaine HCI & Pepsin relived the symptoms of bloating and gas would it then help to absorbed the nutrients better?

    Best wishes browny

  • In the past I've been prescribed ranitidine, omeprazole and lansoprazole for stomach problems. They all suppressed acid. I was quite shocked when I discovered I actually have insufficient acid rather than too much. I think I get more nutrition from my food now than I used to. If you read about proton pump inhibitors like omeprazole and lansoprazole they reduce absorption of vitamin C and vitamin B12, and they also increase the risk of hip fracture and pneumonia. I wouldn't take them again.


  • They also reduce magnesium - I have just heard it from Suzy Cohen on the Gluten Summit on-line .....

  • Have you tried the self testing, browny? When you are uncomfortably bloated, take a little vinegar in water and see if it subsides. There is also a burp test first thing in the morning using baking soda in water. If you don't burp within five minutes, you may have low acidity. google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q...

  • Hi Heloise

    Many thanks for replying and for the links, I will try the vinegar and buy some baking soda tomorrow and do the burp test.

    Best wishes browny

  • browny, if it turns out you have acid or acid reflux, there are a couple of things you can do besides going on those pharmaceutical drugs. I would try deglycerized licorice first.

  • This is a useful link :


  • Thanks for this link, very interesting.

  • Many thanks shaws

  • My husband had bloating and food staying in his stomach problems for years. Has a couple of gastroscopies, both times they said he had a small hiatus hernia so that was the problem . I was researching one day and read that symptoms for high stomach acid and low stomach acid were very similar. Article said you could easily test which you had by doing the following: when you are suffering bloating and indigestion take a tablespoon or so of neat lemon juice. If symptoms get worse drink lots of water to dilute. If symptoms improve within five minutes or so then it is likely you have low stomach acid. To improve situation have a glass of water with about 1 or 2 tablespoons of lemon juice with meals. My husband's bloating and pain vanished like magic within 5 minutes and has been having diluted lemon juice with breakfast and dinner every day since and hey presto no more bloating and stomach pain - magic! By the way we have found that it has to be pure lemon juice, waitrose do one called "a touch of Sicilian lemon" which is best. Tescos has lemon oil in it and doesn't work.

  • Many thanks Janee, I will certainly give it a try,

    glad your husband has improved with this method.

    Best wishes browny

You may also like...