H. pylori infection can cause reduced stomach acid levels (hypochlorrhydria). Without adequate stomach acid, minerals such as iron, magnesium and copper, and vitamins such as vitamin B12, may not be absorbed into your body effectively.
If you do not remove H. pylori, your stomach acid levels may not recover, leading to chronic malnutrition.
When your body is low in these nutrients, all manner of symptoms can develop, including fatigue, depression, neurological symptoms such as headaches, memory and concentration problems, lethargy, apathy and many others.
There are many types of anemia, but to keep it simple, they tend to result from deficiencies in three main nutrients:
Research has clearly shown that H. pylori infection causes iron-deficiency anemia in some people and that H. pylori eradication can increase hemoglobin levels in the blood.
Studies also show quite strong associations between H. pylori infections and vitamin B12 levels.
Unfortunately, doctors often prescribe proton pump inhibitor medications or other antacids to combat some of the more common H. pylori symptoms – e.g. heartburn and acid reflux.
Whilst this might help reduce the symptoms, the long term use of antacid medications may worsen the anemia.
A recent study also showed that the long term use of proton pump inhibitors leads to magnesium deficiency, which in turn can increase a person’s risk for developing heart disease.
This issue is discussed in more detail in my book H. Pylori – From Heart Burn to Heart Disease.
Of course, I’m biased, but I feel a more holistic and natural way of dealing with H. pylori and digestive problems is more effective than most medical approaches.
If you’d like to learn more about how got rid of my own H. pylori infection (twice), I highly recommend you read my book, The H. Pylori Diet.