Neutralise Excess Stomach Acid

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To find which powder, of four, is best for neutralising excess stomach acid.


With stomach pain relief powders being a consumer product, I predict that the best cure for neutralising a build up of stomach acid will be the one which has the lowest cost to successfully neutralise the dilute hydrochloric acid (HCl) (0.5 mol) (to represent the excess acid found in our stomachs). This powder would have be the one which costs less than any of the others to bring the acid build up to a neutral pH of 7. This is because it would make it more affordable and uses a low amount of powder at the same time. I will be measuring how much hydrochloric acid it takes to neutralise 25.0ml of remedy solution.

Stomach Powders:

The powders in question are used for curing acid indigestion. Heartburn and acid indigestion is discomfort in the upper digestive tract. It can affect all ages but is common in adults over 60 years old. The symptoms could be mistaken for a heart attack or a heart attack could be mistaken for indigestion. Symptoms of this malady include: belching or slight regurgitation of stomach contents into the mouth, giving an acid taste, burning or uncomfortable feeling in the chest, difficulty swallowing, mild abdominal pain or bloating, and occasional nausea or vomiting. This unpleasant condition can be avoided by refraining from smoking, overindulging in food and, especially, alcohol. Other measures include decreasing fat in the diet, not wearing tight clothing, and trimming down if you are overweight. Neutralising the excess hydrochloric acid in the stomach can treat acid indigestion. Adding a base or a carbonate, producing water, which is not a problem, usually does this.

Aci - Go marketed by "Winterfields" and costs £1.80 for 100g. (£1.80 / 100g)

Ban - H+ made by "Waxo-Gelcome" has been subject of a nationwide television advertising campaign, and costs £1.25 for 50g. (£2.50 / 100g)

Contracid a popular "Wellington Pharmaceuticals" product, and costs £2.10 for 100g. (£2.10 / 100g)

Destracid made by "Fresco" and costs £3.50 for 200g. (£1.75 / 100g)

Having done a little research, I discovered that the indigestion remedies could be any of a few chemicals, here are the results:

Sodium Bicarbonate or Sodium Hydrogen Carbonate:

The most popular brands of medication that contain sodium carbonate are Alka-Seltzer and Brom-Seltzer. Alka-Seltzer has aspirin, which could be a stomach irritant. This reaction should take place:

NaHCO3 + HCl NaCl + H2O + CO2

Calcium Carbonate:

Calcium carbonate is a fast acting cure. The compound is a powder made from chalk, bones and shells. Like sodium based cures these compounds are good in small doses for short-term relief. Too much calcium can damage the kidney and lead to calcium deposits.

CaCO3 + HCl CaCl + H2O + CO2

Magnesium Hydroxide:

This forms magnesium chloride (a harmless salt) and water in the stomach to calm indigestion.

Mg(OH)2 + 2HCl MgCl2 + 2H2O


Choosing an indicator was another main task. Acid - Base indicators (also known as pH indicators) are substances which change colour with pH. They are usually weak acids or bases dissolved in water.

I had several different indicators to choose from, they are described below:

Universal Indicator:

A universal indicator is a solution which undergoes several color changes over a wide range of pH's. The colour is used to "indicate" pH directly. Universal indicators are usually mixtures of several indicators. A mixture of pH indicators, used to gauge the acidity or alkalinity of a solution. Each component changes colour at a different pH value, and so the indicator is capable of displaying a range of colours, according to the pH of the test solution, from red (at pH 1, strong acid) through green (neutral) to purple (at pH 13, strong alkali).

Bromothymol Blue:

Bromothymol blue changes from one colour to another as the pH of the...
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