Yesterday, I posted about low stomach acid issues. Ironically, I didn’t experience heart burn or reflux with my low stomach acid, but it was contributing greatly to my Leaky Gut Syndrome by preventing me from digesting my food properly or absorbing nutrients from my food.
The root cause of my low stomach acid issues was revealed when my health care provider ordered a GI Effects Stool Test through Genova Labs and it came back positive for helicobacter Pylori, h. Pylori for short.
h. Pylori is a helix-shaped pathogenic bacteria which embeds in the mucosal lining of the stomach. It lowers stomach acid levels to create an environment in which it can thrive, which then allows parasites and other pathogenic bacteria to invade the body. It also feeds off iron stores.
I’ll be honest, learning about this bacteria that was inside of me gave me the heebie-jeebies!
I wondered, how on earth did I get this? Mayo Clinic website states that,
“H. pylori bacteria can be passed from person to person through direct contact with saliva, vomit or fecal matter. H. pylori can also be spread through contaminated food or water. The infection is usually acquired during childhood.”
Also, many feel that H. pylori is more common in feedlot meats due to the unhealthy conditions of the animals, so the risk of contracting it from this kind is meat is higher.
Those who are at a higher risk include children, elderly, those without an optimal amount of beneficial bacteria in their bodies (such as those who have been on antibiotic therapy), or those who are already ill.
In my extensive reading on this little demon-bacteria, I was thrilled to come across this valuable information by Caroline Lunger. Caroline highlights the damage h. Pylori can cause:
- Absorption issues
- Impairs iron absorption
- Low zinc/high unbound copper (read here and here)
- Vitamin and mineral deficiencies, especially for: B12, iron, vitamin D, and lactoferrin levels
- Food allergies/sensitivities
- Seasonal Allergies
- Autoimmune issues
- Adrenal stress
- Lowered thyroid hormone conversion issues (Reverse T3 issues)
- Elevated Histamine levels
- Chronic bacterial infection
- Low stomach acid (read here and here)
- Neurotransmitter imbalance, including GABA
- Liver and Gallbladder issues
- Peptic Ulcer
- Cancers of the stomach, liver, or cervix
- Teeth and sinus problems
- Cancers of the stomach, liver and cervix
- Teeth and sinus problems
In my reading and in discussion with others who suffered from h. Pylori, I learned that many people have no outright symptoms which might be typical of H-Pylori, such as abdominal pain or ache, nausea, vomiting, frequent belching, or weight loss. Others may have symptoms that are more subtle, causing dysfunction of other functions of the body. I was certainly in the latter category.
As I researched, I became increasingly concerned about how poorly antibiotic treatment works for h.Pylori infection. Since I had Leaky Gut Syndrome, I knew that antibiotic treatment would be an increased risk for me (it is one of the causes of Leaky Gut). I had come really far in my treatment for LGS and I didn’t want to undo that.
In contrast, I was really impressed with what I was hearing about the efficacy of herbal treatment for h. Pylori. So, for my treatment and with the approval of my health care provider, I chose:
- raw apple cider vinegar
- triphala (which is a blend of Amlaki, Haritaki, and Bibhitaki)
- Oil of Oregano
- cold-pressed organic coconut oil
- mastic gum
I believe that the triphala in particular was helpful because I had intense gas pains once that herb got into my system; activated charcoal capsules helped, although I used them as little as possible since they bind with everything.
Obviously, you should discuss your treatment options with your doctor. If you’re concerned about the risks of antibiotics and the efficacy of them for h. Pylori, herbal treatment might be for you. Some of the supplements that might be worth consideration are:
- Oregano oil
- Licorice (note that this herb can raise blood pressure)
- Slippery Elm
- Oregon Grape
- Bismuth Citrate
- Bentonite Clay
- Baking Soda (helps disorient the bacteria, but also neutralizes stomach acid)
- Mastic gum
- Vitamin C (don’t use ascorbic acid which is made from mold)
- Vitamin D (see these studies here, here and here)
- Coconut Oil
- Manuka honey
- Cruciferous vegetables
- Lactoferrin (which can also help support iron levels – see here and here)
- raw Apple Cider Vinegar
- Betaine hydrochloric acid (HCl)
Do you have experience as a patient with h. Pylori that you’d like to share? Join us here!
I’m not a doctor, but a patient. Have you read my disclaimer?