Have you ever wondered if there’s a relationship between having low stomach acid and constipation? There does seem to be a strong link between the two, as people with less stomach acid are more likely to suffer from a variety of digestive problems. The relationship is also apparent in people who have a greater amount of stomach acid. People with a low pH level (high acidity) have a greater risk of heartburn, indigestion, and chronic constipation.
Deficiency of Digestive Enzymes
When a person has a deficiency of digestive enzymes, it can lead to a lack of acid reflux in people with low stomach acid. Because enzyme deficiencies are common among people who take over-the-counter medications that have been prescribed for treating indigestion and other conditions, physicians often prescribe medications like sucralfate or lofexidine acetate for this purpose.
While these medications have been shown to prevent the development of heartburn and provide some relief for people with GERD, they can have serious side effects, such as dizziness, headaches, constipation, upset stomach, and nausea. And, because the primary mechanism for relief for the symptoms of heartburn, especially for people with GERD, is the production of digestive fluids, these medications do nothing to address the nutrient deficiencies that cause the problem. As a result, patients continue to experience GERD symptoms even when taking the medications.
Another common condition that can occur with low stomach acidity is ulcers. These can appear in the gastrointestinal tract, the mouth, or in other parts of the body. Common forms of ulcerative colitis can include Crohn’s disease, IBD, fatal colitis. These diseases are caused by abnormalities in the immune system, nutrient deficiencies, or both. They can affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract, although those in the lower esophageal sphincter are at particularly high risk.
Chronic and recurrent inability to effectively digest and absorb foods
Another symptom of low stomach acid is a chronic and recurrent inability to effectively digest and absorb foods, which can lead to malnutrition. As most people consume meals through a series of smaller meals, each with its own set of symptoms, failure to resolve the problem of digestive bloating or increased burning sensation can result in the complete inability to properly digest and absorb foods, which leads to an unbalanced diet that can further exacerbate symptoms. This results in the inability to lose weight and maintain a healthy weight and can also increase the risk of developing serious diseases such as cancer, heart disease, or diabetes.
Dysfunctional or Deficient Enzyme System
There are several potential causes for GI problems. Some of the more obvious ones are a dysfunctional or deficient enzyme system in the body, a chronic inflammation, or abnormally high production of digestive acids. Abnormally high production of digestive acids is often caused by a deficiency of vitamin A, vitamin B-complex, magnesium, or zinc. One of the most common causes of the imbalance is chronic inflammation, which is commonly found in conditions such as heart disease, sepsis (severe infection), or colitis (inflammatory bowel disease).
The symptoms of vitamin B-12 deficiency are fatigue, muscle weakness, frequent urination, and decreased white blood cell count. Common symptoms of chronic inflammation include constant fatigue, loss of appetite, pain in the joints, and a low appetite. To successfully treat a GI problem, doctors recommend a change in diet and the intake of vitamin B-12. However, it is often difficult to obtain vitamin B-12, and some patients may also find it difficult to digest lactose, which is one of the main carbohydrates in dairy products.