Betaine HCL Challenge
Begin by taking 1 capsule of betaine hydrochloride (HCL) with your largest meal of the day. If no reaction is felt after taking the BH, repeat the process the following day with 2 pills with your largest meal. If you still do not feel anything, continue to increase by one pill per day until you feel any change in your digestive system or you reach the maximum of 8 pills. Remember, you should feel something after one or two pills – this is normal. Taking more without feeling any response is a definite indication your stomach acid level is low.
Once you reach the point at which you feel the warming or burning sensation, it’s important to not cease taking the HCL capsules. In fact, you have just uncovered your level of deficiency. Simply take one less pill the next day and remain at this number of pills daily until the warming sensation returns. Continue to decrease in this manner by one pill each time you feel the warming sensation. This weaning down process restores your stomach acid levels.
Once you have determined your dose for your largest meal, you then add Betaine HCl to all of your meals and snacks. For smaller meals, you take less pills. In general, if you eat half as much you take half as much. For example, if your dose is six capsules with your largest meal, then you will take two or three capsules with a smaller meal. You should take at least one or two pills with any snack or protein shake. In general, the more fat that you eat, the more Betaine that you should take.To recap: you will increase steadily by one pill daily until you reach the burning/warming point and slowly wean yourself off the pills by decreasing your dosage by one pill each time the sensation returns.