Chronic Gastritis with Hashimotos (thyrogastric syndrome?)

Just done a search for chronic gastritis alongside hypothyroidism and came up with a post here put on by Helvella/Rod about 7 mths ago....

I assume this is what I have but have not bothered to explore it on the NHS due to the fact that they tend to dole out PPIs like sweeties for these kinds of issues, and not much else is done. I was diagnosed with gastritis/duodenitis around 10 yrs ago, and given PPIs which I took for 2 yrs and then stopped as I didn't like the idea of using them long term.

I have been hypothyroid (presumably Hashimotos though never had that checked out) for 20 years, mostly on T4 until a year ago when I was able to go T3 only via a GP and endo. That hasn't really improved my stomach problems either.... have also looked into adrenal support in the past, and tried Paul Robinson's procedure but gave up after 6 mths.

I was also diagnosed with ME/CFS some 6 yrs ago due to deteriorating energy.

It was then that I began to explore other means to fix my health problems with limited success. I am now on a Paleo type diet, gluten free, and mostly dairy free, and mostly grain free. Any additions of sugar, fruit, grains, processed food, additives etc etc, cause me bad stomach pain, and I do my best to manage this but don't always get it right.

I take a lot of different supplements (had some testing done) now - Betaine HCL, Digestive Enzymes, probiotics/kefir, B12, D3, B vits, folate, etc etc. I also see a private Dr who checks out further things, but has found recently that I have no issues at all with bacteria/fungal that he has detected (though i do have v smelly wind if I have sugar/carbs!). I am due to have an appointment with him soon and can ask further re the gastritis but not sure if this is an area of expertise for him.

Sorry for the long post, but wonder what else I can do to heal up the stomach permanently - or am I stuck with this v strict diet? It does improve but then deteriorates and I have to manage it strictly. I find the whole thing a total bore and v restrictive if I go anywhere. Also should I have any further tests (privately?) to see what the long term issues are.

Incidentally I don't see many people mentioning chronic gastritis on here, and yet this study indicates that it's quite common.

25 Replies

  • Maybe it's because their main issue is hypo and do have stomach issues which they don't/haven't been diagnosed as gastritis. I know a few now take ACV or Betaine tablets for low acid. So there is a connection somewhere.

    I read a good nutritional book which covers many autoimmune diseases which may be helpful. Although you are certainly covering a lot of avenues.

  • Thank you shaws - the book you recommend is certainly cheap 2nd hand so I will give it a go!

    To be honest I don't really know what my main issue is anymore, having got the ME/CFS diagnosis on top. Just trying to treat as much as I can really, and apart from trying NDT have gone as far as I can with the thyroid issues. Having got the T3 for free without a fight I decided to stick with that for now.

    I forgot to say, I am also using Slippery Elm which is my standby, and licorice capsules, and Zinc Carnosine which is supposed to help with healing. I did try the ACV (with mother) before I began on the Betaine, which I felt was more helpful for me.

  • Yes there are issues with gastritis. So no apples, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, white wine........ although not celiac, gluten causes major bloatage and stinky fartage. Went stupid the past week: bought and ate sourdough rye bread......dumbo.......looked like I was having a child late in life.

    I get super nausea from eating those fruits. To the point of retching. Melon, cherries, mango, papaya are fine. A little bit of ripe pineapple is okay just not too much. Bananas are fine but how much fatter do I want to get?

    I was on ranitidine for several years... not good in retrospect. It interfered with iron and B12 absorption (that showed on tests) and who knows what all else. My digestion was really terrible in those days so it was a case of which is worse? Plus I was on other medications like useless Celebrex, which made the stomach even more sensitive.

    In the old days I had not realized that being a one person brass band was probably only entertaining to my children but not healthy. Went gluten free in 2007 after youngest kid diagnosed as celiac. All of a sudden no farting, no gas. Wow. She's gone and married. So being a bit of a dingbat, I occasionally get fed up with not having a nice piece of rye bread toast with predictable consequences, alas. I keep the bread in the freezer so there's no temptation to consume too much due to it going stale. But even so, last week I had two 4 slicer days. Very not good.

    And beer? No beer.

  • Oh dear me, yes, I know the pregnant look! Funnily enough I have seen banana recommended for gastritis but I can't seem to cope with it - gives me bad pain.

    Yes, I know the brass band too!! Unfortunately for me, giving up gluten hasn't been enough. Seems I have to give up most foods too that normal people eat but you did make me smile re entertaining the children!

    Certainly no beer. No alcohol at all though...

  • If I cook the fruit, it's okay. Applesauce doesn't cause trouble. If melon and whatnot are fine, I can't be bothered cooking fruit.

    Since the whole thing about these fruits is so unpleasant, I don't feel like I'm denying myself anything. I'm not sure what the problem is. The peel, the seeds? The fibre and acid? It's not fructose because other fruits which don't cause trouble contain this. It's not an allergy because blueberries and cape gooseberries are not related to apples and strawberries.

    Last year we had a bumper crop of apples after having the entire crop freeze off at the blossom stage the year before. I began to eat a couple of apples every day. Then I started to get nausea a few hours afterward. I did not associate the nausea with the apples. Then I started to get a sudden very intense wave of nausea and at the height of it, I'd sneeze twice and instantly everything went away. Still I didn't twig. Then one evening I got such an intense nausea I retched, like I was about to die or something. I sneezed twice and it was over.

    I emailed my daughter's mother in law about this totally bizarre situation. She's a health journalist and likes to research stuff. She found all sorts of information about how other people report the same problem. There are people, believe it or not, who live like this for decades! Every day of their lives they get this nausea and sneezing!

    I racked my brains to figure out what on earth had changed? What is it I was eating or drinking that was different than before the nausea: Apples!! That was the only thing.

    I made an appointment with my GP but I had by then figured out what the problem was. When I explained it to her, she just stared at me as if a gigantic grub were wriggling itself out of the middle of my forehead. I told her I think it's a vagal reaction due to the irritation from eating the apples. She ordered a mega panel of blood Note to self: ** I should tell her I have nausea more often.** While I was crying from the fatigue, pain and depression of being hypo, she didn't test anything at all. The office manager already knows to just fax me the lab results. Everything was normal. The nausea went away a few days after the last apple.

  • Interesting story and it shows how different we all are, as stewed apples and pears are probably the only fruit I am OKish on. Probably not so good eaten raw though.

    I have had that vasovagal reaction to foods too. In fact I first noticed it when I ate monosodium glutamate in my early 20s (am now 62) long before I knew anything about food reaction issues. Also have it with preservatives put in smoked meat which make me v ill.

    The other thing I get is that when I have a bad gastritis reaction I get a migraine aura, either at the time or as it is resolving.

  • Glutamine powder (from body building section in health food shops) helps gut healing.

  • Thank you Angel. I did try glutamine in the past but stopped as I wasn't sure it was helping. I will give it a try again - just seen one site that suggested taking it before meals mixed with Slippery Elm which I am using.

  • I think it's a slow process. I've been taking it for about 6 months and it's only recently that I've really been noticing an improvement. I just take it first thing in the morning. I think it's recommended to take it twice or even sip a solution throughout the day.

  • Is gastritus the same as hypochloridia ? as it is linked to p anaemia and hypoT. Creon helps

  • I think gastritis can be caused by hypochlorhydria.

    The first private Dr I saw for help with my gut issues got me to take the Betaine HCL which is supposed to put that right. Many people (especially older ones like me!) are low in acid even though the mainstream Drs dole out PPIs to reduce their acid, even though it is in fact likely to be low already.

    I think it may have helped as the Digestive Stool Test I had done a few years back was basically OK. Apparently Creon is a drug that helps people with pancreatic issues, but my test showed high pancreatic elastese which indicated that bit was working OK. (I had not heard of Creon but I looked it up).

    Not sure about the pernicious anaemia.... I have had my B12 level checked by the GP a couple of times and it was pretty good though I understand that the blood test doesn't necessarily tell you the whole story.

    Recently I had a new test via the private GP, (sent to the US called Urinary Amino Acids) and it reckoned I was deficient, so I am taking a high dose now in tablet form. I had been injecting it before for a while, but had a feeling that the B12 had gone out of date.

  • We may have gastric mucosal atrophy as well. It's quite alarming the incidence of this in people over 40. And then add to it the lower peristaltic functioning thanks to hypo if undertreated. The darn food doesn't move along as it should. There's nothing we can do about gastric mucosal atrophy. I looked that one up. Once the tissue of the stomach lining changes from it's original form, it's finito. Other types of cells grow that don't produce acid or enzymes. But acid and enzymes can irritate those areas. I figure the less I irritate the situation, the better.

  • Interesting. I have just looked that up (the gastric mucosal atrophy). Maybe there is some of that going on but I hope not! It sounds pretty worrying and can deteriorate into cancer which obviously I am trying to avoid.

  • Also, have you been checked for Helicobacter pylori? My grandmother died of stomach cancer and my father tested positive for this bacteria and required treatment. He was very ill and people thought he was dying of cancer. This was quite late in the game so he's got some serious problems with his digestion. Mind you, he is 81 years old now.

    I got the antibody blood test done and it was negative.

  • Yes, I had an endoscopy done around 10 yrs ago when it all started and they took a sample, which was negative. As it went on and on, I had another test done (blood this time) about 2 yrs ago, and it was also negative.

  • Look into using L-Glutamine powder - popular with body builders but I don't know why. It is supposed to be good for healing a leaky gut. I've found it helps my chronic gut pain, however it is expensive so I don't use it all the time.

    L-Glutamine can be bought in capsule form but don't bother with those, the dose is far too low to do any good! The powder is definitely the best way of getting it. I take a heaped teaspoon (about 5 grams) mixed with water or squash. The powder has no taste or smell, so is easy to take. It must NOT be taken anywhere near anything hot - food or drink - because it is easily destroyed by heat.

    I also avoid taking it in the evening because I convinced myself it kept me awake at night. Other people have come to the opposite conclusion...

    Edit : I really should read threads carefully before I start waffling - then I might have noticed that glutamine had already been mentioned. Doh!

  • No worries humanbean - useful to have your experience too. I will try to persist with it this time. I still have some powder left I think that I didn't use up. I am just disappointed with the zinc carnosine as it's also supposed to really help. Maybe I should take that all the time too in case.

  • I'm a fan of Slippery Elm too - really good stuff!

    Can I ask the brand(s) of Betaine Hydrochloride and Digestive Enzymes that you use? It is time I did some experimenting of my own.

  • I get my Betaine HCL via Dr Myhill (I think anyone can buy from her, not just her patients) and I think she must import it - it's Swanson's.

    I buy the Doctors Best Digestive Enzymes as I think their products are v good. I started off by using Lamberts Digestizyme, which my husband still uses, and then switched to the Drs Best. I get many of my products via Bodykind online as they seem good value and are v quick to deliver (were recommended to me).

  • Thank you. :)

  • Hi Agapanthus,

    I think I have EXACTLY the same problems as you, and as struggling to get an answer on how to deal with it all. I've just started on Erfa in the last 2 months, so I'm trying to get that dose right (though its proving problematic at the moment - see my previous post: )

    If and WHEN I find some answers I'll let you know what's helping. I'm constantly trying to find different ways to treat this (and I've tried everything you mention above too) and I'm likely going to see a new functional medicine doctor soon who can hopefully help to put all the pieces together (where the previous ones have failed). If you find any relief from anything you try too, do let us know! I was really hoping that the NDT was going to really help my stomach symptoms, but at the moment it only seems to be making them worse :(

    Here's to hoping for a miracle!

    Jen x

  • Not sure if I have that but I do get a lot of acid reflux.

  • Hello A Fork in Time - just been reading your previous post that you linked to. Yes, I thought my stomach issues were difficult, but yours sound v hard, and also you have done so much to try and sort it out!

    I didn't use antibiotics (for a long time) so I don't think that was a major issue for me. I have just been away and while away I struggled to eat the food I normally have, but in fact did quite well for a few days. I even managed to eat oat porridge for breakfast made with water and a dollop of plain goat yogurt on top, without bad effects, so that was a bonus as I don't take much in the way of grains normally, but really like porridge.

    I am now going to a medical herbalist, since I wrote the original post, and am religiously taking their mix, plus slippery elm before each meal which does help. Also while away I took a lot less supplements than I usually do, and I think they add to the issues that my stomach is struggling with. It's difficult as some of the tests I have had done (for ME/CFS rather than hypothyroidism) indicate that I am deficient in some things, so it's a case of taking the essentials I guess.

    I am sure stress makes my stomach worse, but I don't think it's the whole story as I react so quickly to foods. While I was away my lower gut issues were worse than my upper gut gastritis, but that was partly the foods I was eating as I had less choice and had to use what was available.

    Incidentally angel222 - I have had acid reflux with it in the past, but am rarely aware of that these days, but I still get the upper gut pain without the reflux.

  • I have a thyroid problem also now have gastritis .Do any of you suffer with extreme fatigue and no energy with this problem?

  • I apologise kathmax for not replying properly to your question here, but as I wrote the original question which was a year ago, I thought I would provide an update. I had a 2nd endoscopy, the first one being 12 years ago when the gastritis/duodenitis was diagnosed.

    This time there was nothing visible, and I was diagnosed with Non Ulcer (Functional) Dyspepsia. This can be due to a number of reasons, some known, and many unknown. I suspect I have developed a kind of hypersensitivity in the upper gut area perhaps due to the original pain of gastritis/duodenitis. According to Mr Google it is very common and yet I barely hear people speak of it.

    Solution for me - avoidance of acidic foods as much as possible with a low dose of Omeprazole (I don't like being on this, so I tend to pulse it on and off as well). I still have bouts of it, but probably because avoiding foods can be very difficult, but on the whole it's better than it was.

    With regard to your question kathmax, I would say that any condition that is pain orientated also tends to deplete your energy.

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