Effects of SIBO
SIBO affects much more than just your digestion. Your digestive track is your link to the energy, vitamins and nutrients that we require to survive.
The gut contains trillions of bacteria. Dysbiosis of the gut or the overpopulation of bacteria in the small intestine (as seen in SIBO) can have multiple effects on other systems in the body.
- mental health problems
- inflammation issues
- weight gain and weight loss issues
- food intolerances
- histamine intolerances
- skin issues
- hair loss
- vitamin deficiencies
- And more can all be the unpleasant effects of SIBO.
Gas, bloating, and pain can become a daily debilitating occurrence, which is just the start.
Mental health and SIBO
Mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety and brain fog, are higher in SIBO sufferers.
Your gut directly communicates with your brain, and we learn more about how significant this connection is every year.
The implications SIBO has on your life can add to the mental health burden. For example, did you know you can make a happy rat sad by changing its gut bacteria?
SIBO and chronic inflammation
Research has found that inflammatory conditions that affect the skin and other systems are higher in SIBO.
SIBO bacteria compromise the structure between the cells in the small intestine. That causes abnormal intestinal permeability allowing toxins and allergens to enter the bloodstream.
That requires your body to mount your immune response then and take action. That causes an inflammatory reaction. We often see SIBO sufferers present with higher rates of inflammatory health conditions than healthy individuals.
SIBO, gas and bloating
SIBO and weight
It can make you unable to absorb energy from food. Yet, in some cases, it can give you the ability to extract more energy from food (via fermentation). The reasons behind this are complex, and there is more than one, but we explain in detail.
SIBO and food intolerance
SIBO can damage your relationship with food. You can learn more about SIBO, food intolerances and why it happens below.
SIBO and histamine intolerance
The gut-skin axis
The gut-skin axis is real. People who suffer from digestive issues are much more likely to experience skin issues such as acne, psoriasis, etc. Studies have found SIBO sufferers ten times more likely to experience acne.
SIBO and hair loss
That is usually tied to nutrient deficiencies commonly associated with SIBO. You can do things to help stop hair loss and promote growth. We have given you some hair hacks if you are currently struggling with this, backed by evidence.
The brain and the gut
If the brain and gut couldn’t communicate, we would not know when we were hungry, when we were stressed, when we needed to direct blood away from the gut and to the muscles for flight and fight.
The gut and its bacteria play a significant role in inflammation. The immune system can produce many compounds that can affect the brain. Our gut can even influence what our brain wants.
They are more interlinked than we ever thought.
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Can you eat white bread/a biscuit/a cookie/a croissant/lollies/highly processed food with no issues? When you eat “healthy” foods like fruit and vegetables, do you feel very sick and lethargic after?
I got SIBO after a bad case of food poisoning, I contracted while overseas. I didn’t realise this at the time because it wasn’t immediately after that my problems and food intolerance began. It happened slowly over sometime.
I had hydrogen SIBO, and I lost a lot of weight during that time for two reasons. One of them is far less talked about, and I think it needs to be. The first reason was 1) the type of SIBO I had extracted energy from the food I ate. And reason 2) was the disordered eating habits I developed due to the SIBO.
Extreme bloating and gas, caused by undiagnosed SIBO – I struggled with SIBO for years. Like many, I had no idea. I was constantly told things like: “Bloating is normal”, “Maybe it’s just your period”…
I was scared to take too many rounds of antibiotics as I think other antibiotics may have triggered my SIBO in the first place. That’s why I decided to take antibiotics for only two of my four rounds of treatment. Both treatments seemed to work equally as effectively, but everyone is different.
After developing SIBO (which I was unaware I had at the time because I didn’t even know what it was) I started to notice my once long hair was thinning and getting shorter. At first, it was nothing drastic, and I’d hide it with styling and product, but over time the issue progressed (and so did my SIBO). My hair was fine, but I had lots of it.