Can Your Flora Be Causing Hashimoto’s?
You’ve heard about leaky gut, but what is it anyway? Leaky gut is considered to be “leaky” due to damage in the intestinal lining of your GI tract. The intestinal lining is made up of smooth muscle cells and when certain factors such as toxins, micro-organisms and foods trigger an immune response, you can get damage at that level of the intestinal cells.
These factors and immune connection cause an inflammatory response and this can cause the tight junctions that connect one cell to another to become weak and separate. This causes a leakage of proteins and increased permeability between the cells.
In my patients with Hashimoto’s or any other autoimmune condition, I always begin by investigating their gut health. It is crucial to identify gut imbalances to see if it is causing any underlying autoimmune conditions. I often screen their symptoms of leaky gut, which could show up as:
- Digestion discomfort
- Brain fog
- Low vitamin levels – not absorbing nutrients
- Weight gain or weight Loss
- Skin conditions like eczema and dermatitis
- Joint pain
- IBS symptoms
A recent case that comes to mind is about a 46 year old woman who came in with a diagnosis of Hashimoto’s. She had been on medication for 10 years and continued to experience symptoms of fatigue, weight gain, bloating, moodiness and poor digestion.
She was concerned that her Thyroperoxidase (TPO) and Thyrogloblulin (TGB) antibodies were always elevated. She wanted to know what else she could be doing to bring them down. She reported that every time she went to her endocrinologist or PCP and asked what to do about these levels, she was told that it was a normal process with Hashimoto’s and the medication that was given to her would help to control it.
When she came in to see me, we began by exploring her gut health. We started with a food sensitivity test, which identified over 95 foods that she was having a delayed reaction to. In addition, I had recommended a stool microbiology test to identify the good, the bad and the ugly organisms in her gut.
She was taking a probiotic, but I informed her that I needed to check the stool test to see if the good organisms were even present in her flora. When the stool results came in, she was shocked to see that she had harmful bacteria such as Klebsiella and Pseudmonas abundant in her cultures.
Based on the results, I created a treatment protocol that consisted of herbal anti-bacterial medications that would help to eradicate the pathogenic organisms and add in the deficient good bacteria. These things were not in her current probiotic.
We retested her stool in 3 months and at that visit, she reported improvements in her bowel movements, her bloating disappeared, mood was great and we even started to see reductions in her thyroid antibody levels for the first time in 10 years!
Health starts from the inside out! Your gut health is connected to your overall health. What you eat on a daily basis can affect your internal micro-organisms. Healing your gut using amino acids and herbs that soothe the GI tract can be a very powerful and effective way to getting your health back on track.
For more information on testing and therapies we offer at Integrative Health, check out my video here.
Find out if the foods you are eating and the microorganisms in your gut are holding you back from the life you want to live and start feeling better quickly.
P.S If you missed Dr.Beardsley’s article on detox click here.
To Your Health and Well Being,