Hi, I read that one of the primary causes of bacterial overgrowth in the small-intestines is due to a too alkaline digestive environment. This is because digested food leaves the stomach into the small intestine, and the food globules do not have the right consistency of hydrochloric acid to then keep the small intestine too acidic for bacteria and therefore mostly sterile. Also low acid inhibits pancreatic enzyme release and results in insufficently digested fats & carbohydrates etc...So, I guess a couple of questions sprung to my mind: - do the authors of this and other bacterial studies consider this a factor? If so, did the 200 patients in this Cedars-Sinai study have their stomach acid levels checked? Has anyone here been diagnosed with low acid levels, and seen symptoms improve with taking HCL supplements (eg. Betaine capsules)?Ciao,ZD.