How can Poor Digestion cause Weight Gain?
What is Digestion?
The digestive system is responsible for absorbing nutrients from our foods and eliminating waste and toxins from
our body via the stool. When digestion is less than optimal you can expect a whole host of health problems
- Weight Gain
- Nutrient Deficiency
- Brain Fog
If your digestive system does its job, you will breakdown your food into small nutrients such as vitamins, minerals,
amino acids from protein, and essential fats (omega 3's and 6's). You should absorb those small nutrients (micro-
nutrients) though a healthy gut lining into your blood stream. These are the first steps that must happen to
maintain a healthy body.
Common digestive problems
Digestion starts before you even put food in your mouth. When you first smell your food, or even think of the food
you are about to eat, you start to produce enzymes and stomach acid in order to start the digestive process.
Disorders in acid and enzyme production are often the underlying cause of many common digestive disorders
- Stomach Ulcers
- GI Infections
- Duodenal Ulcers
- B12 Deficiency
- Cracks in the corners of the mouth
The disorders above are specific to low stomach acid and/or low digestive enzyme production. There are also
many other common digestive problems that might cause weight gain and have a very negative impact on overall
- Leaky gut
- Celiac disease or other gluten intolerance/sensitivity
- Food allergy/sensitivity
What causes poor Digestion?
The causes of poor digestion can be just as diverse as the symptoms themselves. We already mentioned
problems with low stomach acid production and poor digestive enzyme production but the potential causes do not
stop there. Infections can cause ulcers or IBS. Pain relievers (NSAID's) such as aspirin and ibuprofen or
corticosteroids can cause leaky gut. Magnesium deficiency, dehydration or a low fiber diet can cause constipation.
Stress can cause several types of digestive problems including constipation, IBS, GERD/Reflux and ulcers. A sick
gallbladder can cause GI pain and poor nutrient absorption. Antibiotics can cause dysbiosis, constipation and
As you can see, there are many possible causes of poor digestion. The most important thing is to know what type
of digestive problem you have so that it can be treated appropriately. We recommend a comprehensive digestive
test that will rule out many different possible causes of digestive disorders including bacterial infection, parasite
infection, dysbiosis, candida yeast, poor fat digestion and poor carbohydrate digestion. Once you isolate the
cause of poor digestion, it is often very easy to correct it. This will not only lead to better digestion but also easier
The healthy gut is supposed to contain about 100 Trillion good bacteria, aka gut flora. These beneficial bacteria
are crucial in the digestive process. They aid in the breakdown of food, nutrient absorption, vitamin assimilation
(they actually make vitamin K and certain B vitamins), gut maintenance, and immune function. When you take
antibiotics one time you can kill as many as 90% of the good bacteria in your gut, setting you up for a lot of health
issues. As the good bacteria try to grow back, bad bacteria and yeast tend to grow along with them resulting in an
imbalance in the natural bacterial environment. This imbalance is called dysbiosis and it can lead to nutrient
deficiencies which impact the metabolism, poor bone health, hypothyroid, problems with immunity and IBS
(constipation and diarrhea). A sluggish metabolism, caused by dysbiosis, can often lead to fatigue and
uncontrollable weight gain.
Digestion and Weight Gain
For many reasons, poor digestion is one of the common causes of weight gain. If you can not breakdown your
food, absorb your nutrients and eliminate toxins effectively your metabolism will suffer and you will most likely gain
weight. All of the calories that you consume in your diet are meant to either build your body's tissues (muscle,
bone, etc.) or to be burned for energy and in order for either of those things to occur you must have sufficient
nutrients in your system. Those with poor digestion will not sufficiently absorb B-vitamins, iron, magnesium or any
of the other nutrients required to burn calories. The result is fatigue and excess body fat.
When you are unable to eliminate waste properly due to poor digestion, your body will suffer from toxic build-up.
Many toxins cause your body to retain body fat and excess water. The result is sluggishness, puffiness and
difficulty losing weight.
If you are having issues with digestion and need to lose weight, call Complete Health and Weight Loss
If you are having digestion issues but do not live in the DFW area, we can still help you via phone
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Complete Health and Weight Loss
5000 Legacy Dr. #240
Plano, TX 75024