Antacid Overdose!
Yunmin Lee, Ryan Chong
Hillcrest Middle School
Floor Location : J 075 H

Indigestion and increasing acidity levels in stomachs aren't uncommon, given the foods our stomachs are expected to break down in the modern world we live in today. We get it, some of you just don't have as a strong gut as I do. That's why there's something called antacids! They're commonly known as Tums® , Alka-Seltzer®, or maybe you might know them as Rolaids®. You just orally consume them to lower your acidity levels in your stomach so it doesn't hurt and stay upset for as long. They're temporarily going to give you relief from things that happen to you like heartburn, acid reflux, or simple indigestion. We have been surrounded by many people who suffer from these problems that are ignored. People of all kinds have told us previously that one brand of an antacid is better over another, or some would simply tell us that a specific brand does not work on them. We decided to bring out our background knowledge on the stomach and the digestive system to test if one brand really tops another. We revolved our project around the pH scale, which is the most common scale used to measure acidity levels of a substance. The lower the number, the higher it is in acids. A stomach's acid is around 2-3, while an antacid tablet itself is around 11; very basic, far from acids. When the two meet, they are to counteract the pH level of each other and lower acidity levels. So we gathered some materials to simulate a typical human stomach. Using lemon juice and some breakfast foods (which consisted of eggs, toast, and some fruit) in labeled large beakers, we made a "stomach". Then we dropped in some antacid tablets, a different brand in each beaker, and tested pH every hour with our good friend litmus paper. The higher the pH rises, the more effective a antacid brand would be, as it would mean that it is doing a better job of getting rid the acidity in the lemon juice. But what our results were not expected- it was a clear demonstration of the time of response and the duration it lasted, and most importantly, how effective it was at its job.