Thyroid problems are very common indeed, and surprisingly it’s estimated that roughly 60% of people with some kind of sub-optimal thyroid problem don’t realise there’s an issue.  So what’s the link betwen IBS & thyroid health?


Thyroid symptoms can be quite vague, and overlap with a lot of other health problems, making them difficult to distinguish.


This article will address five things you need to know about the important links between your gut health, and thyroid health.

Although quite small, your thyroid gland is extremely important and impacts just about every other system of your body. It helps to regulate your –


  • Metabolism
  • Heart
  • Digestive function
  • Mood


1. IBS & Thyroid


The thyroid impacts gut health mostly because the hormones your thyroid produces directly affect how your digestive system functions. In the case of hypothyroidism, not enough thyroid hormone is produced, causing a general slowing down of everything. Your gut function included.


To keep your hormones functioning optimally its really important to use ‘clean’ skincare.  Tropic is a super range (I use it myself and have seen an amazing improvement in my skin since I have) click here if you’d like to learn more.


When your digestive system is functioning optimally, the muscles lining the digestive tract contract regularly in what is known as peristalsis. This peristaltic action keeps the gut moving, ensures nutrients are digested and absorbed, and waste eliminated.


Slow gut function results in slow motility and constipation.


2. Your microbiome


Since sub-optimal thyroid function impacts digestion in this way, it also has a very negative impact on your gut flora – the colonies of bacteria that live in your gut. There are beneficial strains of bacteria, and not so helpful ones and we need the beneficial strains to ‘crowd out’ the less helpful ones. You can read more about the microbiome and the effects it has on health here.


If you’re worried your thryoid health is impacting your gut health, I’d highly recommend downloading my online course The Ultimate Gut Health Programme to help support both your digestive sysem and hormone health, whilst avoiding triggering symptoms.


It’d be impossible to include all you need to know in one blog, but the programme will have all you need to know to ensure you’re soothing your digestive system, whilst eating delicious and filling foods.


3. Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO)


Alterations in gut motility may potentially give rise to a condition known as SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth). SIBO causes a lot of the typical IBS-type symptoms such as abdominal pain, excessive gas and bloating. When SIBO occurs you end up with bacteria (or sometimes yeasts) which should be flourishing in the large intestine, taking up residence in the small intestine. Needless to say this causes a great deal of distress and discomfort if you happen to be affected.

Unfortunately, as is often the way with these things, the health of your digestive system also determines how well your thyroid functions.


We can end up in a vicious cycle …

    4. The gut metabolises thyroid hormone

    Studies have shown that around 20% of the enzyme that converts thyroid hormone into its active form comes from our gut bacteria. Therefore, healthy thyroid function is dependent on a healthy microbiome.

    In other words, poor gut health can impact thyroid function.


    Your body converts T4 hormone into the active form of thyroid hormone, T3, in your gut. So if your gut health is imbalanced, for example, through –

    • IBS
    • Chronic constipation
    • Coeliac disease

    or anything else, you may not be getting as much conversion of T4 to T3 that you need, to function optimally. 

    5. The thyroid-gut link

    Unfortunately, this may result in a vicious cycle as one problem aggravates the other – sub-optimal thyroid function could be causing less than ideal digestive health, and poor digestive health may be contributing to sub-optimal levels of thyroid hormone.

    I hope that helps to shed some light on the link between IBS & thyroid health.


    If you would like to speak to me about any aspect of your gut health, then please use this link to book into my diary for a FREE 30 minute chat so I can find out more about what is going on for you.  Alternatively please use the ‘Learn More’ link below.

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