Monday, December 4, 2023

Does Hashimoto’s Cause Leaky Gut

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Gut Microbiota And The Intestinal Barrier

Hypothyroidism, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis & the Leaky Gut Connection

Microbiota can be sensed by the host through pattern recognition receptors , such as toll-like receptors and nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain -like receptors . In the gut, the bacteriahost communications are largely dependent on the recognition of microbe-associated molecular patterns by PRRs expressed on immune and non-immune cells. Certain microbiota, bacterial products, and metabolites affect the intestinal barrier function and are responsible for the subsequent breakdown of tissue homeostasis. When there is a leaky gut, commensal bacteria in gut lumen, together with their products, are able to escape the lumen of the gut, which may induce inflammation and cause systemic tissue damages if translocated into peripheral circulation .1). This process of translocation is called microbial translocation .

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About Jill Carnahan Md

Dr. Jill Carnahan uses functional medicine to help you find answers to the cause of your illness and the nutritional and biochemical imbalances that may be making you feel ill. Functional medicine is personalized medicine that deals with root cause of disease instead of just treating symptoms. Dr. Carnahan will search for underlying triggers that are contributing to your illness through cutting edge lab testing and tailor the intervention to your specific needs as an individual. Dr. Carnahans office Flatiron Functional Medicine is located in Boulder, Colorado.

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The Hashimotos Hives Ibs And Blastocystis Connection

Did you know that people with Hashimotos are more likely to develop the skin condition chronic spontaneous urticaria , which is manifested by widespread, itchy and swollen skin rashes? These hives can be very distressing, and they can seem to come up randomly. However, they are quite common in fact, forty-two scientific studies have linked Hashimotos with chronic hives!

People with Hashimotos are also more likely to develop irritable bowel syndrome , a chronic condition that affects the large intestine and often shows up before ones Hashimotos diagnosis. This condition can manifest as either diarrhea or constipation, or both, and may also cause excess gas, bloating, abdominal pain, and cramping that is often relieved after passing a bowel movement.

As mentioned previously, a Blasto infection can manifest as symptoms related to the skin and gut, but much controversy is out about this protozoan. Some studies, namely from Thailand and Mexico, suggest that this is a commensal organism . Thus, doctors may be told that there is no need to treat it.

However, studies from Europe, Australia, and the Middle East, have connected this pathogen to not just chronic hives, but also irritable bowel syndrome, both of which are very common manifestations in the early stages of Hashimotos. This begs the question are hives, IBS and Blasto all connected? Lets take a look at the current research.

Blastocystis Hashimotos And The Gut

Hypothyroidism, Hashimoto Thyroiditis and the Leaky Gut ...

Various studies, using many different methods for parasite identification, have found the prevalence rate of Blastocystis hominis to be between 13 to 73 percent of people with irritable bowel syndrome. As parasite detection methods are not 100 percent reliable , these rates could be even higher.

Studies have found that Blastocystis species of protozoa do not invade the colonic mucosa, but they do lead to disturbances of the barrier function and increased intestinal permeability, or leaky gut, which we know predisposes us to autoimmunity. Blastocystis does this by breaking down secretory IgA and the immune system of its infected host.

The good news is, research has found that eradicating Blastocystis in cases of urticaria and IBS, often leads to the remission of both conditions. Many of my clients have also been able to reduce their joint pain, fatigue, and TSH and TPO counts, by eliminating Blasto.

Ive found that eradicating a Blastocystis infection in a person with Hashimotos often leads to a remission of Hashimotos, with an improvement in symptoms, a reduction in food sensitivities, and a reduction in thyroid antibodies.

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Leaky Gut And The Brain

Another topic I want to quickly discuss is how leaky gut can affect the brain. If youve ever seen a child with autism experience a mood swing, this can be caused by intestinal permeability. Gluten and Casein-Free Diets have proven effective for many children with autism because these proteins can leak through the gut and then recirculate and act on the brain similarly to an opioid drug.

This is also why leaky gut has been linked to other psychological disorders such as anxiety, depression and bipolar disorder. So, in many cases, if you can heal the gut you can heal the brain.

The 4-Step Plan to Heal Leaky Gut

The good news is theres a solution to healing leaky gut. There is a four step process that includes:

REMOVE foods and factors that damage the gut

REPLACE with healing foods

REPAIR with specific supplements

REBALANCE with probiotics

Heres the protocol I have used with my patients over the years that has helped them see incredible results.

Remember, the top foods to remove that cause leaky gut are sugar, grains, conventional meat, conventional dairy and GMO foods. The top toxic exposures to eliminate are tap water, pesticides, NSAIDS, and antibiotics but remember to always consult with your physician if he has prescribed these for you.

Healing My Leaky Gut Stopped Hashimotos

I continued eating this way for 4 months before finally adding back in grains and legumes. These days, I find that I dont eat grains as regularly, but I am not strict about removing them from my diet.

I still have not added back in gluten and I dont think I will until all my thyroid antibodies are normal. My TPO antibodies are currently 34 IU/mL and still dropping each month. My personal goal is to get them under 9 IU/mL. You can read more about my thyroid lab results in Part 2: What Do You Mean My thyroid is Broken?.

When I do get comfortable enough to add back in gluten, it most certainly will be minimal. I need to feel like my body can breakdown the gluten protein without promoting a new leaky gut episode.

Healing my leaky gut stopped Hashimotos thyroiditis from destroying my thyroid. It is exciting to see how close I am getting to the finish line! Along with healing my leaky gut, there are 9 Supplements to Heal from Hashimotos that I took while on my journey to health. I feel that healing your insides is the most important part, but supplements can help you to replace depleted vitamins and minerals to help your body to regain balance.

Healing my leaky gut was tough, and there were definitely times that I wasnt perfect. However, the healing process was worth it. Especially since my food allergies are no longer an issue!

Next I started to drop back my medication more on this in my next post Part 8: How I Quit My Thyroid Medication.

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The Gluten Gut And Thyroid Connection

Amy Myers, MD

Amy Myers, M.D. is a functional medicine physician, trained and certified by The Institute of Functional Medicine. Dr. Myers earned her Doctor of Medicine at the LSU Health Science Center, and completed her Emergency Medicine residency at the University of Maryland Medical Center.

Dr. Myers retired from her functional medicine clinic, Austin UltraHealth, where she served thousands of patients, to empower those who were failed by conventional medicine. Shes a 2x New York Times bestselling author, and the founder and CEO of the health & lifestyle e-commerce brand, Amy Myers MD®.

You might already know that the two most common types of thyroid dysfunction, Hashimotos and Graves, are caused by autoimmune disease, a condition in which your body confuses your own tissues with outside invaders and begins attacking itself. But what causes the autoimmunity, and how does it lead to thyroid disease? The answer is multi-part, but as I explain in my book, The Thyroid Connection, it all begins in the gut, because the gut is the gateway to health. In this article, we will uncover the ways in which a damaged gut sets off a chain reaction that leads to both autoimmune and non-autoimmune thyroid disease.

Healthy Gut or Leaky Gut?

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How The Gut Influences The Thyroid

Leaky Gut, Supplementation, Healing Hashimoto’s

The composition of our gut bacteria, or microbiome, affects our bodies ability to assimilate and absorb key micronutrients such as iodine, selenium, zinc, iron, B-vitamins, vitamin A, and tyrosineall of which are essential to healthy thyroid function. These micronutrients are often deficient in those with autoimmune thyroid disease.15

Although not fully understood, gut microbiota also influence the conversion of T4 to T3T3 being the active form of thyroid hormone. Iodothyronine deiodinase enzymes play a central role in the conversion of T4 to its active form T3. It is hypothesized that the intestines and gut microbiota influence the activity of these enzymes.16

At least in part this is attributed to the influence of gut microbiota on the availability of micronutrients like selenium and zinc which are needed for converting T4 to T3.17,18

But likely it goes further than thatas deiodinase activity has been found in the intestinal wall, and at least one animal study shows the ability of gut bacteria to bind thyroid hormones .19

Can you say vicious cycle?

This is by no means an exhaustive review of all the ways the thyroid impacts the gut , but it further validates the connection and interconnection between the two systems.

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Could Your Thyroid Be The Cause Of Your Digestive Woes

As we continue our thyroid series, remember that the thyroid is the butterfly-shaped gland in the lower part of the neck. This gland produces hormones that regulate many body functions, including metabolism, heart function, digestion, muscle control, brain development, mood regulation, and bone maintenance. It is essential to our overall bodily function and wellness, which makes it no surprise that our thyroid health can also contribute to our digestive health.

In our modern times, digestion issues are very common. However, as we often learn in functional medicine, common does not always define the way a body should optimally function. Before we dive into the possible digestion manifestations that a thyroid condition can contribute to, its important to know what digestion should look like.

Many people think they are eliminating waste regularly, but they are not. You will often see that its normal to have a bowel movement anywhere from 3 times a week to 3 times a day. However, what is normal is not necessarily ideal. Ideally, you should be eliminating waste 1 to 3 times a day. Your liver is responsible for clearing your body of toxins and moving them to your intestines. So if you are not emptying your waste regularly, these toxins are being reabsorbed by your body. On the other hand, if you are having frequent loose stools or diarrhea, this is also problematic, as your body is not absorbing necessary nutrients.

Digestion and hyperthyroidism

How Inflammation Affects Thyroid Function

  • Inflammation of the thyroid, also known as thyroiditis, can lead to hypothyroidism. This inflammation can cause thyroid hormone to leak into the bloodstream.
  • Michael Ruscio, Doctor of Natural Medicine and author of Healthy Gut, Healthy You, says that inflammation can interfere with the conversion of the hormone T4 into T3. It can also cause elevations in rT3 , which is thought to be released when you are ill, and can block the T3 hormone from working.
  • Inflammation can also cause issues with your mood for example, it can interfere with your neurotransmitters , causing mood issues. As a result, many patients with hypothyroidism also suffer from depression caused by a combination of inflammation and hormonal imbalances.
  • A study in JAMA Psychiatry found that C-reactive protein is associated with depression and psychological distress.

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What Were The Study Results

Serum zonulin levels were significantly higher in the subjects with Hashimotoâs disease compared to the control group. Free T4 levels were higher in the control group but differences in TSH levels were not statistically significant. Anti-TPO and anti-TG antibody levels were higher in those with Hashimotoâs disease as we would expect.

Higher zonulin levels correlated with higher thyroid medication dose . Zonulin levels did not correlate however with anti-TPO or anti-TG antibody levels.

Repairing Leaky Gut When You Have Hashimotos Low Thyroid

What Is A Leaky Gut? (And How Can It Cause So Many Health ...

If you have Hashimotos hypothyroidism you can improve your health by working to manage leaky gut. This is mostly done through diet. The most common causes of leaky gut are processed foods, excess sugars, lack of vegetables, and foods to which you are sensitive .

Excess alcohol, NSAID use , and antibiotics are other common factors in causing leaky gut.

The leaky gut diet is also called the autoimmune diet and is essential in helping repair leaky gut. Stabilizing blood sugar is also key.

If you are not managing your autoimmune Hashimotos low thyroid, or if your liver is not detoxifying properly, you will likely suffer problems with leaky gut. Nutrients to support liver detoxification include milk thistle, dandelion root, and schizandra.

Many nutrients also can help support gut healing, including probiotics, enzymes, l-glutamine, deglycyrrhizinated licorice root, collagen, hydrochloric acid, and anti-fungal herbs.

Supplements that help stabilize blood sugar, manage stress, tame inflammation, and support healthy gut bacteria also can put you on the path to a healthier gut.

However, if you have Hashimotos hypothyroidism and other autoimmune diseases, managing leaky gut may be a lifelong process as occasional autoimmune flares inflame the gut.

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The Immune System Resides In The Gut

Research suggests that 70% of our immune system resides in our gut, so it’s essential to keep her healthy!

We know that nearly all adult cases of hypothyroidism in the US are due to an autoimmune condition called Hashimoto’s disease. Alternatively, the autoimmune condition Graves’ is often the cause of hyperthyroidism .

For an autoimmune condition, it is not only essential to strengthen the immune system with a diet rich in fruits & veggies, regular movement, and proper sleep hygiene but also to address intestinal permeability .

What Is Leaky Gut Syndrome

Think of the lining of your digestive tract like a net with extremely small holes in it that only allow specific substances to pass through. Your gut lining works as a barrier keeping out bigger particles that can damage your system.

When someone has leaky gut the net in your digestive tract gets damaged, which causes even bigger holes to develop in your net, so things that normally cant pass through, are now be able to. Some of the things that can now pass through include proteins like gluten, bad bacteria and undigested foods particles. Toxic waste can also leak from the inside of your intestinal wall into your blood stream causing an immune reaction.

Read Also: Do Probiotics Interfere With Thyroid Medication

Leaky Gut And Hashimotos Disease

There is still debate about whether Hashimotoâs disease causes leaky gut or whether leaky gut is the cause of Hashimotoâs. But there is no question that the two are linked. In fact, some degree of leaky gut is present in anyone who has an autoimmune disease whether its Crohnâs, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, Parkinsonâs and/or psoriasis just to name a few.

It is believed that low thyroid hormone, along with other culprits, can cause leaky gut which results in a viscous cycle as leaky gut worsens Hashimotoâs disease by building up the autoimmune attack on the thyroid. Nutrient deficiency also becomes a huge issue as the intestinesâ ability to assimilate and absorb nutrients from foods is compromised. It is not uncommon to see deficiencies in the B-vitamins, selenium, zinc, iron, Vitamin A amongst others in people with Hashimotoâs Thyroiditis aka autoimmune thyroid disease. All of these are important for healthy thyroid function.

Lectins And Foods That Cause Leaky Gut

Healing Autoimmune [RA, Hoshimoto’s, Leaky Gut, Food Allergies…]

Lectins are found in many foods, not just grains, and consumed in smaller amounts your body will do just fine with them. But foods that have large amounts of lectins like wheat, rice, spelt, and soy are more problematic.

Sprouting and fermenting grains reduces phytates and lectins, and makes these foods easier to digest.

GMO and hybridized foods tend to be the highest in lectins since they have been modified to fight off bugs.

Also, gluten containing grains will damage your intestinal lining causing leaky gut. So while you are working to heal your system stay away from all grains especially ones that contain gluten like wheat. Once your gut is healthy you can add back in grains that have been fermented and sprouted to eat occasionally.

Conventional cows milk is another food that can cause leaky gut. The component of dairy that will harm your gut is the protein A1 Casein. Also, the pasteurization process will destroy vital enzymes making sugars like lactose very difficult to digest. For this reason, I only recommend buying dairy that is raw and from: A2 cows, goats, sheep, or buffalo.

Sugar is another substance that will wreak havoc on your digestive system. Sugar will feed the growth of yeast, candida, and bad bacteria which will further damage your gut. Bad bacteria actually creates toxins called exotoxins that damage healthy cells and can eat a hole into your intestinal wall.

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