Digestive issues

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Constipation
• Resolves with optimized thyroid
• May be exacerbated by supplemental iron
• Address with
• magnesium citrate and/or oxide
• vitamin C
• moderate use of fiber supplements
Low stomach acid (hydrochloric acid) (evaluate with home test)
• Resolves with optimized thyroid
• Can cause
• slow digestion
• indigestion (bloating, burping, gas)
• constipation
• acid reflux (When the stomach does not empty properly, food sits
in it too long. Partially digested food, mixed with the acid that the
stomach does produce irritates the stomach lining and the
esophagus)
• poor appetite
• Food sensitivities can develop from absorption of food particles
partially digested due to low acid
H. pylori flourishes in low acid environment
• Address with HCl (hydrochloric acid)

Gastric irritation
While adequate stomach acid is necessary for proper digestion, the
lining of the stomach and intestinal tract needs protection from these
acids. The lining consists of compact epithelial cells bound by tight
junctions and protected by a mucous covering secreted by surface
epithelial cells and Foveolar cells. This protective gel-like coating
protects the gastric mucosa from autodigestion and from erosion by
enzymes, acids and other caustic materials that are ingested. In
addition, bicarbonate ions are secreted by the surface epithelial cells
which act to neutralize acids. If this protective layer is not optimal,
taking DGL (deglycyrrhized) licorice root extract may help to increase
the mucous secretions and reduce stomach irritation.

Celiac disease
Gluten is a protein in many grains, most notably wheat, rye and barley.
Someone diagnosed with Celiac Disease (also called Celiac Sprue) is
recognized as having an immune response to consuming gluten. Over
time, the immune response damages the villi in the lower intestines,
compromising the absorption of nutrients.

Testing early in the disease may be negative and some people do not
have obvious gastrointestinal symptoms. It is possible that the only
symptoms are a variety of conditions caused by impaired absorption of
nutrients such as unexplained anemia, fatigue, joint pain, arthritis,
osteoporosis, neuropathy and infertility.

Celiac is autoimmune in nature, so anyone with another autoimmune
condition, such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, is at increased risk to
develop it. Although it is frequently genetic, Celiac may be triggered at
any time of life by viral infection, pregnancy, childbirth, surgery or
extreme emotional stress.

Gluten sensitivity
There are many individuals who, although they do not suffer from
Celiac Disease, still react badly to gluten. Here again, there may be
overt gastrointestinal symptoms, or there my only be seemingly
unrelated effects such as fluid retention, aches and pains, fatigue,
flu-like symptoms, elevated heart rate, palpitations or headaches.

In the article "Spectrum of Gluten-Related Disorders: consensus on
new nomenclature and classification," the authors state:

“It is now becoming apparent that reactions to gluten are not limited
to C[eliac] D[isease] [(CD)], rather we now appreciate the existence
of a spectrum of gluten-related disorders. The high frequency and
wide range of adverse reactions to gluten raise the question as to
why this dietary protein is toxic for so many individuals in the world.

"One possible explanation is that the selection of wheat varieties
with higher gluten content has been a continuous process during
the last 10,000 years, with changes dictated more by technological
rather than nutritional reasons. Wheat varieties grown for thousands
of years and mostly used for human nutrition up to the Middle Ages,
such as Triticum monococcum and T. dicoccum, contain less
quantities of the highly toxic 33-mer gluten peptide. Apparently the
human organism is still largely vulnerable to the toxic effects of this
protein complex. . .  .

“Additionally, gluten is one of the most abundant and diffusely
spread dietary components for most populations, particularly those
of European origin. In Europe, the mean consumption of gluten is
10 g to 20 g per day, with segments of the general population
consuming as much as 50 g of daily gluten or more. All individuals,
even those with a low degree of risk, are therefore susceptible to
some form of gluten reaction during their life span. Therefore, it is
not surprising that during the past 50 years we have witnessed an
'epidemic' of CD and the surging of new gluten-related disorders,
including the most recently described G[luten] S[ensitivity]. . . .”

Addressing Celiac or gluten sensitivity
The only treatment for either Celiac or gluten sensitivity is to eat a
gluten-free diet. This is harder than it might sound. In addition to the
obvious grain products, gluten is hidden in many products. Anything
that lists “hydrolyzed vegetable protein” or “modified food starch” as an
ingredient can have gluten. Food cooked in oil that has been used to
fry breaded items can contaminate something that would otherwise be
gluten free. Regular soy sauce and anything made with it has gluten.
Gluten can be found in surprising places such as in a coating used for
french fried potatoes and in ice cream.

Wheat allergy
Separate from gluten sensitivity or Celiac, wheat allergy is an
immunologic reaction to wheat proteins. It can manifest as a food
allergy affecting the skin, the gut or the respiratory tract; it can take the
form of wheat-dependent, exercise-induced anaphylaxis, occupational
asthma (baker's asthma) and rhinitis, or contact urticaria. IgE
antibodies are present in these conditions.

Leaky Gut
Even if a person is not diagnosed with Celiac or a wheat allergy, any
sensitivity to gluten or other foods, the presence of candida, some
fungi, some toxins and other causes may result in an immune response
in the intestinal tract. This may appear to only cause symptoms such
as gas or loose stools. However, over time, the immune response may
actually damage the lining of the digestive tract, causing miniscule
perforations or "increased gut permeability."

This can allow unfriendly bacteria and toxins, as well as incompletely
digested food, to leak into the blood stream rather than stay where it
belongs: within the small intestine before entering the lower intestine.
This increased intestinal permeability then starts a cycle where the
leaking triggers additional immune response, exacerbating both
symptoms and damage. This condition of “leaky gut” is not currently
recognized by the mainstream medical community although the subject
of “gut permeabiliity” is the focus of a tremendous amount of research.

Supplemental glutamine may help reverse leaky gut.

H. Pylori
Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is a very common “hidden” bacterial
infection, most often without any symptoms. Unless treated, infection
with H. pylori will last for life. The older you are, the more likely you
have H. pylori.

Fifty percent of the world population is infected. In the U.S., some
estimates are that 30 percent of the adult population is infected. There
is strong evidence that poor sanitary conditions play a role in higher
incidence of H. pylori. In countries with poor sanitation, approximately
90 percent of the adult population can be infected.

H. pylori is also statistically more common in people with autoimmune
diseases, especially autoimmune thyroid diseases.

The possible symptoms of an H. pylori infection are broad. The most
common, easily recognized symptom of H. pylori – stomach ulcer –
affects only about 17 percent of those infected. H. pylori can cause
atrophic or autoimmune gastritis (atrophy of the stomach lining). This
damages the parietal cells that make stomach acid, causing an inability
to digest proteins and properly absorb various vitamins and minerals.
H. pylori can result in leaky gut which can cause food intolerances,
Candida overgrowth and even acne.

• If H. pylori has caused a magnesium deficiency, symptoms could
include fatigue, depression and headaches

• By damaging the parietal cells, H. pylori can cause autoimmune
Pernicious Anemia, because parietal cells also make Intrinsic Factor,
which is required to absorb vitamin B12. B12 malabsorption and
deficiency can also be involved in fatigue and depression, as well as a
host of other symptoms

• H. pylori is usually treated with a cocktail of antibiotics. Once it is
eradicated, the digestive tract can heal

• It is possible that, in some people, high cortisol may primarily be a
result of the body’s attempt to control inflammation in the stomach
and/or the small intestines that is caused by an H. pylori infection

• Recent research has shown a link between H. pylori and a variety of
conditions including diabetes, infections and elevated HbA1C levels

C. difficile
• Clostridium difficile is a bacteria known to flourish during antibiotic use
• Responsible for up to 20% of antibiotic-associated diarrhea
• One of the primary causes of pseudomembranous colitis
• Very difficult to treat
• Recurrence is common
• Treated with antibiotic therapy and S. boulardii