Betaine HCI

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Betaine HCI
  Evaluated for:
Effectiveness Rating Effectiveness Rating
Gastroesophageal reflux (GERD)
0 (Unclear Effectiveness)
0 (Unclear Effectiveness)


  • Interestingly, some cases of heartburn and dyspepsia are caused not by too much acid but, rather, by too little. Stomach acid is essential for proper gut and immune function. One important effect of stomach acid is to strengthen the muscular sphincter at the top of the stomach, which squeezes shut tight to prevent backwash of acidic stomach fluids up into the esophagus. Obesity, advanced age, and certain medications can lower acid levels, which relaxes the sphincter and increases the risk of heartburn and GERD.
  • Betaine is an acid-containing supplement that helps to break down protein. Taken prior to meals that contain protein, it aids digestion of that protein. Otherwise, without sufficient acid, protein can undergo a process called putrefaction, which interferes with digestion and metabolism of the protein.
  • Betaine is often taken along with digestive enzymes and/or medications known as H2 blockers, which offset the acidity of the supplement.


  • Muriatic acid should be used with caution if the stomach lining is thin.
  • The data supporting the use of muriatic acid for heartburn or indigestion are limited.
  • If you have been diagnosed with Barrett’s esophagus, stomach bleeding, or ulcers, muriatic acid is not a good choice for you. There are no data supporting its benefit with these conditions.
  • Excessive dosing of muriatic acid can cause burning.
  • Do not use muriatic acid if you are on non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for pain or inflammation. Two common over-the-counter examples are ibuprofen (Advil ®, Motrin®) and naproxen (Aleve®)

Betaine is contraindicated in patients taking aspirin, non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (e.g., ibuprofen, naproxen, diclofenac, and many others), and steroids. Concurrent use of these medications along with betaine may compromise the integrity of the stomach lining and cause ulcers and other potentially life-threatening complications.

DOSAGE:Each tablet of betaine generally contains about 650 mg. Dosing ranges between approximately 3000 to 5000 grams, corresponding to 4-7 tablets/meal, and should be titrated up slowly depending on symptoms and side effects. This supplement should be taken only under the supervision of a qualified medical professional.

CONCLUSION: If you elect to try Buetaine HCI, remember to include it in your list of medications when you visit your doctor and other health care providers.