Lowering Sulfur Intake To Fight Sibo With H2s
Sulfur is an element in food that is normally very healthy to the body, but which can feed bad bacteria in those who have SIBO. To add insult to injury, SIBO can turn dietary sulfur or sulfate into hydrogen sulfide , a foul gas that smells like rotten eggs. Temporarily reducing intake of high-sulfur/sulfate foods, beverages and supplements can help get rid of SIBO.
Unfortunately, sulfur is in many healthy foods. The amino acids cysteine and methionine contain sulfur, and are present in all animal proteins. Cutting out excess protein will be helpful, but its important to keep eating enough. The RDA for protein is .36g per pound of healthy body weight, which is about 46g/day for an average woman or 56g/day for an average man. This is much less than most Americans typically consume. If you are an athlete, youll need more. You can get lots of protein from beans, lentils and legumes.
Interventions Targeting The Colon Microbiota
The underlying mechanisms that make up the H2S toxin hypothesis are supported by changes produced with fermentable fiber supplementation in individuals with UC and findings from a recent fecal microbial transplantation trial that demonstrated a correlation between sustained remission and increased butyrate production, while increased abundances of Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria correlated with no response or relapse . Notably, members of the Bacteroidetes phylum contain mucin desulfating sulfatase enzymes . The FMT in UC findings have also been recently expanded upon by Wei et al. who demonstrated a role for fiber in maintaining the gut microbiota composition in individuals with UC following FMT .
Interplay Between Functional Microbial Groups
A number of physicochemical factors shape the composition and functional output of microbial communities, which need to be integrated in order to fully account for the inter-individual differences. One such factor is the availability of hydrogen , which is essential as a substrate for anaerobic respiration in the colonic lumen. The groups of bacteria that rely on and compete for H2 for anaerobic respiration are acetogens, methanogens, and SRB Figure 2) . H2 production results from microbial fermentation of carbohydrates in the lumen of the intestine. Therefore, the balance between H2 production and consumption is often referred to as the âhydrogen economyâ . An imbalance of H2 consumption and production may result in a metabolic environment that consumes NADH for H2 production at the expense of butyrate production . In the context of the H2S toxin hypothesis, it is important to consider possible imbalances in H2 consumption or production that could create a metabolic environment leading to UCânamely, excessive H2S production , mucin degradation , and diminished butyrate production .
Bacterial competition for hydrogen for anaerobic respiration in the lumen of the intestine. Legend: Acetogens, methanogens, and sulfate reducing bacteria are the microbial groups that compete for H2 in anaerobic respiration in the lumen of the colon. The availability of hydrogen can shape the composition and functional output of microbial communities.
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Other Research On Plant
Theres one other research paper published in 2018 that looks at why a plant-based diet is a good recommendation for most cases of IBD .
The main argument is as follows:
- While theres a lot to learn about IBD still, it appears to be triggered worldwide by environmental factors .
- In particular, current research suggests that IBD is a result of mucosal inflammation that forms as a response to certain gut microbiota .
- Plant-based diets help improve the diversity of gut microbiota, and reduce inflammation, thereby helping to achieve remission of IBS symptoms in most patients.
While the outcomes look very promising, theres a lot of research to be done still to discover exactly why a plant-based diet is effective and to have more confidence in this conclusion.
The graph below compares remission rates of Crohns disease after being treated with different diets and medications.
The first column is a combination of a plant-based diet and infliximab , which achieved an amazing 96% remission rate.
Theres some evidence that a plant-based diet combined with medication can treat other diseases related to ulcerative colitis like IBD.
What Is Sulfur Intolerance
Under certain conditions, sulfur can build up in your body and cause symptoms, leading to intolerance to sulfur-rich foods.
The sulfur-rich amino acid methionine is high in sulfur-rich foods and beverages like red meat, dairy products, coffee, and black tea. Its also beneficial to your immune system and liver .
A mutation of the CBS gene , or other conditions, such as hydrogen sulfide SIBO, a high sulfur diet, sulfur-compound supplements, or well water high in sulfur, can affect sulfur metabolism and lead to sulfur build-up in your body.
This genetic abnormality combined with hydrogen sulfide SIBO, a high sulfur diet, sulfur-compound supplements, or well-water with high sulfur content can cause sulfur to build-up in your body.
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Ulcerative Colitis Treatment Medications
Treatments for ulcerative colitis includes both medications and surgery however, there is no medication that can cure ulcerative colitis. Medicationsthat treat ulcerative colitis are
- anti-inflammatory agents, for example, 5-ASA compounds like sulfasalazine , and olsalazine , and topical and systemic corticosteroids), and
- immunomodulators, for example, 6-mercaptopurine , azathioprine , methotrexate , cyclosporine .
Treatment of ulcerative colitis with medications is similar, though not always identical, to treatment of Crohn’s disease.
Avoiding foods that trigger ulcerative colitis symptoms is one way to help manage symptoms through diet. Another is knowing what foods to eat that may help relieve flares. Following is a list of foods that may help soothe ulcerative colitis flares:
Dietary choices do not cause ulcerative colitis, but certain foods can trigger and worsen symptoms. Learning to identify trigger foods can help reduce the frequency and severity of ulcerative colitis symptoms.
Not all people with ulcerative colitis have the same triggers, but a list of some of the most common includes:
The Effect Of A Plant
As far as Im aware, this is the only study published so far that looks at the effect of a plant-based on ulcerative colitis.
While thats not exactly what were looking for, it still may provide some insights.
They provided patients with a mostly lacto-ovo vegetarian diet while in the hospital, and educated them on how to follow a similar diet outside the hospital.
There were a few big findings.
First, by the time most of the patients left the hospital, they had already seen significant improvements in symptoms.
In total, 77% of patients had some sort of improvement, shown in the graph above.
On top of that, there were lasting effects that suggest treating ulcerative colitis patients with dietary education is more effective than just traditional medication :
Relapse rates after educational hospitalization providing a PBD were far lower than those reported with medication. Educational hospitalization is effective at inducing habitual dietary changes.
They followed up on a yearly basis and had relapse rates far better than expected, at just 2%, 4%, 7%, 19%, and 19%, respectively.
What can we take from this?
Well, there are some obvious limitations. Its a single study with largely self-reported data, so you cant make too many definitive conclusions.
While more research is needed, it does appear that a plant-based diet is effective at managing ulcerative colitis for most chronic sufferers.
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Sulfur And Digestive Complications
Ulcerative colitis is a form of inflammatory bowel disease impacting the large intestine, or colon. The colon houses trillions of bacteria that generally protect your digestive system from bad bacteria and disease. In people with ulcerative colitis, the bacteria do not flourish as much, and high intake of sulfur-containing compounds can worsen existing colon inflammation or reduce the count of protective bacteria in the colon. Sensitivity to sulfites, which are sulfur-based compounds used as flavor enhancers or preservatives for some processed foods, can also increase digestive disturbances or cause allergic reactions, notes the Cleveland Clinic.
- Ulcerative colitis is a form of inflammatory bowel disease impacting the large intestine, or colon.
- In people with ulcerative colitis, the bacteria do not flourish as much, and high intake of sulfur-containing compounds can worsen existing colon inflammation or reduce the count of protective bacteria in the colon.
Pick A Less Acidic Alternative To Tomatoes
Whether theyre juiced, cooked, or stewed, tomatoes can be notoriously hard on your gut. Not only are tomatoes acidic, which can irritate your intestinal lining, but their seeds can also be hard to digest.
If youre not in the middle of a flare, you may be able to indulge in an occasional helping of tomato sauce perhaps a quarter cup, suggests Craggs-Dino.
Do tomatoes trigger your UC symptoms? Make a sauce or bisque-style soup from pureed cooked squash instead.
Choose Fruit Without Seeds
Berries such as strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are high in antioxidants, which may help ease inflammation. But theyre also possible UC triggers, because they contain seeds that are tiny and difficult to strain out, Craggs-Dino says.
Blueberries, which also contain antioxidants, dont have this type of seed, but they do have skin that can be difficult to break down during more severe flares. To work them into your diet, try tossing them in a smoothie, says Cavagnaro.
Smoothies break down that insoluble fiber that our belly struggles with, she says. Still, she cautions, If youre in a flare, avoid them. Instead, swap berries for applesauce, canned peaches or pears, and bananas.
Fish Oil Supplementation/essential Fatty Acids: Not Effective In The Treatment And Maintenance Of Remission In Uc
Prostaglandin E2 and leukotriene B4 are metabolites of arachidonic acid via the cyclooxygenase pathway and the lipoxygenase pathway, respectively. Increased levels of prostaglandin E2 and leukotriene B4 are found in active UC. Diets containing high levels of n-3 fatty acids such as eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid are known to modify leukotriene production. Dietary fish oil supplementation has improved patients with other inflammatory disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis. Five placebo controlled double blind studies have addressed this question in UC. Despite reduced levels of leukotriene B4, some histopathological improvement, and a tendency towards a steroid sparing effect, no overall convincing clinical benefit of dietary fish oil supplementation for 412 months was seen in the treatment of patients with active UC. Most of these trials involved treatment of active disease whereas one study failed to demonstrate any benefit in maintenance therapy. A recent randomised controlled trial again failed to demonstrate any efficacy of essential fatty acid supplementation in the maintenance of remission in UC. Therefore, despite some modest effects of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in the treatment of active mild to moderate disease, essential fatty acids combination therapies have no benefit in maintaining remission in UC.
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A List Of Low Sulfur Foods
More isn’t always better when it comes to certain nutrients, and in the case of sulfur, certain individuals â such as those with ulcerative colitis â might want to follow a low-sulfur diet.
Video of the Day
If you fall into that category, you’re probably curious about what low-sulfur foods are good to eat and which high-sulfur foods you should avoid. Here’s what you should know about sulfur in your diet.
Hydrogen Sulfide The Gas
The H2S gas is made in the colon. It is a nasty customer. It is mostly what gives flatus its foul smell. We avoid the smell when we can and make fun of it. But, there is nothing funny about H2S. Consider these facts about H2S, all medically documented.
- Half the normal population makes H2S gas in their colon. The other half makes methane gas.
- However, 90-100% of ulcerative colitis patients make H2S. Thats an interesting fact, isnt it?
- H2S is a toxic gas. In higher doses, it can irritate the eyes. In even higher concentrations, it is as damaging as hydrogen cyanide. In the normal colon, there are cells that contain an enzyme that detoxifies the H2S gas.
- There is some evidence to suggest that this enzyme is deficient in ulcerative colitis patients, so that the H2S may linger and damage the colon wall.
- Most patients have ulcerative colitis in the left side of the colon where the H2S gas is mostly made.
- Certain bacteria in the left side of the colon use sulfur in our foods, water and especially in meats, to make the H2S gas.
- The good bacteria in the colon make certain acid substances, thereby acidifying the colon contents.
- Here is a possible key point. These H2S producing bacteria do not grow in an acid environment. Keeping the colon acid may be important.
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How To Treat Ulcerative Colitis With Diet
Image Credit:Pixabay. This image has been modified.
The rotten egg gas, hydrogen sulfide, is one of the main malodorous compounds in human flatus but the larger concern is that it may be responsible for relapses of inflammatory bowel diseases such as ulcerative colitis. In my video Preventing Ulcerative Colitis with Diet, I talk about the role animal protein may play in the development of these diseases, thought to be because of effectively putrefying animal protein gas. But what if you already have ulcerative colitis? Can cutting down on sulfur-containing amino acids help? Previously, the only dietary intervention shown to help at all was the withdrawal of milk.
In Treating Ulcerative Colitis with Diet, I discuss the role of diet in ulcerative colitis. Case reports going back decades described patients with ulcerative colitis whose flares appeared to be triggered by cows milk. The elimination of all dairy products from the diet was reported to frequently result in a dramatic improvement in symptoms. But, when milk was reintroduced back into patients diets, it could trigger an attack. The role of milk wasnt formally studied, though, until 1965. Was it just a small group of patients who were allergic? Or, could a milk-free diet help with this disease in general?
Effect Of Elimination Diet On Ulcerative Colitis
A food elimination diet can help to rule out any food allergies or sensitivities that might exacerbate a person’s symptoms. This can be done with the help of a nutritionist, health coach, practitioner or if you feel up to it, you can absolutely do it own you own. Dairy and gluten are hot topic foods, suspected to cause some people digestive issues A full elimination diet includes these in the most common food sensitivities: Dairy, gluten, sugar, corn, soy, eggs, and peanuts.
Simply start by eliminating each of the foods to which you wish to determine your sensitivity in consecutive three to five day increments. After all foods have been eliminated, add each one back into your diet in the same time frame. For example, if you first eliminate dairy, do this for three days and move on to sugar while still keeping dairy eliminated as well. When it comes time to add the foods back into your diet, you will be able to see the symptoms much more clearly having given your body extended breaks from each of the potential sensitive foods.
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Low Sulfur Diet: How It Supports Your Gut Health
If youve been experiencing brain fog and excessive gas that smells like rotten eggs, you may have a sulfur intolerance.
There is currently little information available when it comes to testing for and treating the symptoms of sulfur sensitivity, but following a low sulfur diet is typically the first step in regulating sulfur levels in your body.
In this article, well explain what a low sulfur diet is and discuss additional treatment options. Well also take a look at the link between gut health and the symptoms of high sulfur levels.
Food Swaps For A Healthy Ulcerative Colitis Diet
Follow these tips to reduce flares while enjoying the foods you love.
The effect that food can have on a persons ulcerative colitis flares can be unpredictable. Tomatoes or onions, for example, may irritate one persons digestive system, but they may not trigger the same symptoms in someone else.
Still, even though there is no specific ulcerative colitis diet, there are some foods, generally speaking, that can worsen a flare and should be avoided.
When we think of ulcerative colitis, we have to ask, Is this person in a flare meaning, is there inflammation in the GI tract? Eating insoluble fiber like nuts, seeds, peels of fruits, and raw veggies only further irritates an ulcerated, inflamed colon, says Stacy Cavagnaro, a registered dietitian for the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Medical Home at Cleveland Clinic.
If you have UC, you may feel helpless against the flare-ups, wondering if youll ever be able to enjoy normal food again. But dietary and lifestyle modifications may help control your symptoms and extend the time between flares. Here are seven food swaps to help minimize symptoms and keep you in remission.
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Toxic Effects Of Hydrogen Sulfide
Although H2S is generated by the host and is increasingly recognized to have a multitude of important beneficial physiologic functions , it becomes a potent toxin once its concentration exceeds the detoxifying capacity in the tissue. Specifically, higher amounts of H2S generated in the intestine have the potential to disrupt the gut barrier function, which may be an early and critical initiating event in triggering the onset of UC and the perpetuation of its activity . Traditionally, the H2S toxin hypothesis has focused on the potential injurious effects of sulfide gas on the cellular metabolism of colonocytes, mainly the inhibition of cytochrome c oxidase activity in mitochondria, which induces oxidative stress in a fashion similar to cyanide . Roediger and colleagues demonstrated that H2S inhibits Î²-oxidation of butyrate by colonocytes, their preferred energy source . Notably, UC mucosa has lower rates of butyrate uptake and oxidation relative to healthy controls . In summary, oxidative stress and energy starvation caused by excessive H2S concentrations may lead to colonocyte death, penetration of the epithelial barrier by the intestinal microbes and their direct interaction with the mucosal immune system. Resulting inflammation leads to further disruption of the gut barrier, decreased butyrate oxidation , and decreased mucosal sulfide detoxification and the subsequent perpetuation of inflammation .