Hypothyroidism and Gastritis
Well well well… If it’s not one thing, it’s something else.
In my never-ending trips to the doctors, I was told yesterday that I have gastritis, caused by acid reflux/too much acid. Which is just marvellous.
With yet more time off work, I’m sat here wondering if I’ll ever be able to just function like a regular adult. Will my life stop revolving around the twists and turns of my rubbish body? Like, ever?
Whilst I agree that I have gastritis, possibly with some complications, since for the past week or so I’ve had uncomfortable bloating whenever I eat, the strange sensation of feeling hungry but quickly feeling overwhelmingly full after just a few bites of food, nausea for hours after I’ve eaten and a general feeling of being unwell (fatigue, pain throughout the body), it’s not as easy as just getting a diagnosis and popping some pills.
Just yesterday, all I managed to eat all day was a few spoons of high protein yoghurt for breakfast, followed by two bites of cheese and a bite of a banana for lunch, then just three spoons of a boiled egg for dinner. Just those few bites alone each time would make me feel so full, that it felt as if I’d eaten four whole Christmas dinners right there! This was followed by horrendous bloating and feeling very uncomfortable, the intense feeling that I was going to be sick, unable to think straight and feeling not all with it. I’ve had this every day since Sunday.
After a trip to the doctors, the nurse said that I likely have too much acid which can lead on to stomach ulcers and complications, so to take Omeprazole to reduce the acid. In the meantime, I also need to adopt a diet of only meat and non-acidic fruit and vegetables to let my stomach heal and the inflammation go down. Also drinking plain water and water only. She said to follow this for one to three weeks and slowly reintroduce food groups again to see what my stomach could handle.
However, this perhaps doesn’t address what has caused the gastritis (inflammation of the stomach lining) in the first place. H Pylori is apparently the most common cause, accounting for around 8 in 10 cases of gastritis, and with an overgrowth of H Pylori in autoimmune thyroid disease patients (like myself) being common, this is probably the cause. So diet alone may not fix the gastritis and I may need to go back for antibiotics. Although not penicillin because we all know what that did to me before!
Other causes, which it can’t be for me, include cocaine use, too much alcohol (I like a drink once or twice a month but not to the point of gastritis!) and taking aspirin or ibuprofen too often (I’m very wary of taking painkillers).
Interestingly, it’s possible though less common for it to be caused by an autoimmune reaction, where the immune system mistakenly attacks the body’s own cells and tissues, which in this case is the stomach lining. And we already know that having one autoimmune disease, i.e. Hashimoto’s in my case, puts you at a higher risk for developing another.
But my money is on H Pylori or Candida, as I’ve read a lot about Candida and Hashimoto’s in the past.
So, after a sleepless night of tossing and turning with both hunger from having tiny amounts of food these past few days, as well as holding my painful, bloated stomach as I try to get comfortable, I’m sat at home trying to stomach some chicken at 8:30am in the morning.
Taking my blood sugar level, it’s low, which isn’t surprising since my stomach won’t let me eat properly and I feel very faint and stiff. I’m also wondering if the inflammation in my stomach is affecting my ability to process and absorb all my thyroid medication since I have hypothyroid symptoms returning – weakness in muscles, pains throughout the body, very low mood, dry and itchy skin and intense fatigue.
I am royally fed up. But I’ll let you know how I get on.
At least my skin is the clearest it’s been in ages…
Have you had gut issues? Comment below.
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Rachel Hill is the highly ranked and multi-award winning thyroid patient advocate, writer, speaker and author behind The Invisible Hypothyroidism. Her thyroid advocacy work includes authoring books, writing articles, blogging and speaking on podcasts, as well as being a board member for The American College of Thyroidology and The WEGO Health Patient Leader Advisory Board. Rachel has worked with The National Academy of Hypothyroidism, The BBC, The Mighty, Yahoo, MSN, ThyroidChange and many more. She is well-recognised as a useful contributor to the thyroid community and has received multiple awards and recognitions for her work and dedication. She has authored two books: ‘Be Your Own Thyroid Advocate‘ and ‘You, Me and Hypothyroidism‘. Rachel is British, but advocates for thyroid patients on a global scale.