Symptoms such as bloating, loose stool, constipation, reflux and various food sensitivities are so commonplace that they are easily overlooked as signs that the digestion is out of balance and potentially creating other disease in the body.
In the past 50 years, aggressive pesticide use in modern farming, increased use of plastic, the oral contraceptive pill, frequent antibiotic prescription and denatured diets, on top of huge environmental changes have threatened the balance of good gut bacteria in humans which has consequences for other body systems.
If gut health is compromised then absorption of nutrients from food will be inefficient. Absorption of fats is particularly relevant to fertility: essential fatty acids form the building blocks for hormone production.
Poor digestion and low levels of good bacteria in the intestine can reduce the elimination of toxins and excess oestrogen from the body and reduce the efficiency of the thyroid gland, which has a crucial role to play in ovulation.
Poor diet and antibiotic overuse can result in inflammation, weakening the lining of the gut leading to a “leaky gut”. This is where toxins may cross from the intestine into the bloodstream creating an immune system response causing inflammation in the intestine and/or elsewhere in the body.
Some cases of unexplained infertility may be caused by these kind of immunological factors. We do know that endometriosis and PCOS have autoimmune factors involved in the disease process.