Your Thyroid and Food Allergies:

What's the Connection and What You Can Do About It

When a new client comes into my office and they know that they’re hypothyroid, the next thing that usually comes out is this:

“My digestion is awful and I feel like I’m sensitive to everything!"

Low Thyroid and Food Allergies

There’s one piece that goes along with hypothyroid that none of us can avoid.

Low thyroid = lower levels of hydrochloric acid.

It’s just part of the definition of having decreased metabolic function from the general (aka….your thyroid).

Hydrochloric acid is that invaluable acid that is made in your stomach. It helps with the initial breakdown of food in your stomach {as a side note: hydrochloric acid also protects us against bad bacteria, so there is a relationship to our immune system as well.}

When you’re low in hydrochloric acid then you’re likely to have a sensitive tummy because you just can’t break down your food with a whole lotta ease.

your Thyroid and food allergies
your Thyroid and food allergies

Slow Transit Time

Slow transit time is inevitable when our HCL levels dip. Food tends to sit in our tummy for a longer period of time and is not broken down efficiently.

When this happens, two looming digestive issues lurk (and create the perfect condition for food allergies to pop.)

1. Relux: Yep…..that burning feeling that can happen when you’ve eaten too much or if you’ve eaten the wrong food. It is well-documented that reflux tends to happen when there’s not enough hydrochloric acid in your stomach.

Now, hear me through on this one. In the Western world, we’re petrified of acid when there’s that burnin’ feeling. BUT- If your HCL acid levels are too low, food sits in your stomach too long and ferments (sort of like old trash.)

This fermentation process creates an acid that bubbles up and creates pressure. When we test for acid in the digestive tract- we can not distinguish whether that acid is from fermentation or from excessive levels of hydrochloric acid.

In the case of low functioning thyroid (and women with hormonal issues), it’s often due to low levels of HCL and poor transit time creating a fermented acid.

2. Leaky gut: When there a tiny holes in the small intestinal wall, larger food particles can pass directly into the blood stream. Over time this situation (known as leaky gut) can lead to food allergies, inflammation, and poor digestion. Often, it is started by the simple fact that food is not broken down well enough due to low levels of hydrochloric acid.

Reflux and leaky gut are no fun in and of themselves, and they create the perfect environment for a food allergy to start because they put a significant strain on the digestive tract. And, it all begins with low hydrochloric acid.

Why Removing the Food Isn’t Enough

When we’ve got a hunch that we have a food allergy, must of us want to get rid of the item and stay off of it {maybe even forever.}

It’s a smart reaction, and it’s a reasonable reaction to some extent. Aaaaand…….we can do better.

Removing the offending food helps {because we’re taking out the problematic food}, but if we don’t address the underlying digestive issue- low stomach acid, then our body is going to create the same reaction to another food. Suddenly, we’ll have a long list of allergies. Sound familiar?

Sure sounds familiar to me. I was in this same situation not so long ago, until I found out about the low thyroid- slow transit time connection. And, here’s how I improved my digestion over time.

Kristin’s Top Tips to Improve Transit Time

1. Take hydrochloric acid. Get a simple hydrochloric acid supplement at your local health food store. Taking this with meals will help improve your transit time, take a load off your digestive stress, and will kiss acid reflux goodbye.

2. Warm Apple Cider Vinegar first thing in the am before eating. Apple cider vinegar is one of the easiest and most affordable remedies out there. The malic acid in ACV helps to improve stomach acidity over the course of time. It’s not a quick fix, but every little bit helps.

3. Use Gelatin. Gelatin is a collagen builder. Now, truth be told, it will not improve transit time, but it does improve digestion. Gelatin is essentially collagen in a can and will help those tiny little holes in the intestinal wall- that we call Leaky Gut- heal. Here’s my favorite way to drink it (yep….I drink one of these a day.)

4. Chew Your Food Well. Believe it or not, chewing your food well does improve transit time! Increasing the surface area of anything will help it digest better. Take your time and chew well.

Now, It’s Your Turn (...pass it on!)

I love passing on my quick tips to help you support your hormonal health and get more out of life. If you’ve got a close friend that you know would benefit from this post, pass it on OR share it with the whole gang by clicking your favorite social share button at the bottom of the page. I sooooo appreciate it.

Here’s to happy tummies and digestive freedom!

~ Kristin