Kishore Naib

Why does my stomach and gut protrude when I have an underactive thyroid?

There are two causes: 1) You are getting fat, 2) You have reduced gastric motility, which causes the stomach and intestine to protrude.

I am going to talk about abdominal distension. I will only touch briefly on the body fat.

Increased Body Fat From Hypothyroidism

This happens because your thyroid (which is effectively the engine of the body) operates at a slower rate, due to lower levels of thyroid hormones. All chemical processes in the body are governed and magnified by the amount of thyroid hormone in your body. That just doesn't affect your personality and other issues such as fatigue; it affects your basal metabolic rate. When severely hypothyroid, this can be reduced as much as 30 to 50%. The only way to not get fat when you are hypothyroid is to eat less calories, or correct your thyroid hormone levels.

There are no excuses. If you are underactive (hypo), you must eat less, or you will get fat.

There are no excuses. If you are underactive (hypo), you must eat less, or you will get fat.

When you are underactive or going through a period of change and not in a state of regular thyroid homeostasis, all sorts of bad things happen to the body - the wear and tear on your organs is proven to shorten your life.

In this article, I am going to talk about why the stomach/gut/belly not only protrudes (frontwards) but also distends (laterally). It makes you look like a teenage mutant ninja turtle.

Having said that, unless you are an athlete and have under 10% body fat, you probably won't even notice it. Except you may feel constipated and bloated.

But, if you're like me, you want to look your best undressed, on the beach or even on the stage, you most certainly will.

Gastric and digestion motility

It appears to be the case that thyroid hormones are near directly proportional to your rate of digestion motility. If you're hypo (running slow), food will stay in the stomach and intestines and easily accumulate - even on the same day.

I am going to show you some photos of myself below, which are taken within days of each other. In the left-most column, I will have a thyroid belly. The right column will be within 2 - 3 days later of taking T3 (fast-acting) to rid me of kilograms of "stuck" food, which alters my appearance significantly.

Before the images, I am going to address the Question: Why not just take your thyroid HRT medication and why doesn't it stay the same each day?

Answer: When training hard, using supplements, gaining muscle (lean body mass) and reducing body fat, your dosage absolutely cannot remain the same. It must be modulated. Your UK endocrinologist probably won't help you with that - he'll tell you to stop training.

I have tried everything from glutamine, probiotics, super hydration, fibre to prebiotics. Nothing moves the food through the intestine until thyroid levels are corrected. I have been battling this for Twenty years and I still make mistakes.

Those who are informed may wonder whether I have been abusing bodybuilding drugs such as human growth hormone and insulin - I have not. This is thyroid-related.


So, I'm pretty certain the MOA of thyroid hormones being out of homeostasis is stimulating the aldosterone receptor as well (the hormone which determines salt and fluid retention). But if this theory were correct, a fat face and significant subcutaneous water would ALWAYS coincide rather than sometimes. So, I'm not certain. But I do recall one endocrinologist prescribing me epleronone for days when I had a fat face and had a social event - it is an aldosterone receptor antagonist, therefore the theory does make sense.

Images of thyroid belly / abdominal distension - note there is NO significant change in body fat between the side by side images

Images With thyroid gut / Thyroid Belly
Images Days later (less than one week) after taking more T3
With thyroid bellyKit naib with thyroid belly at men's physique competition
1 week later after increasing T3 to clear gutKit Naib with clear thyroid gut whilst posing
With thyroid gut - Disgusting, confusing and painfulKishore Naib with bloated intestines from hypothyroidism
Three days later, after increasing T3 to clear the gut, even after trying a full day of laxatives to try to clear the gut and intestines - nothing helped except correcting thyroid levelsKit Naib a few days later with clear intestines
With thyroid gut - like a "turtle belly" - and also thyroid moonfaceDisgustingly painful distended stomach even with low body fat
One week later - after correcting gastric motility with increased T3 hormones
posing ok

About Kishore Naib (Kit Naib)

Kishore founded the e-commerce company Watch Shop in 2007 and exited in 2014 after an acquisition by Watches of Switzerland at the age of 34. Watch Shop was a medium sized enterprise (£44 million sales) and was one of the UK's fasted growing companies, doubling turnover every year.

After leaving Watch Shop Kishore did a few coding projects but decided to follow his true and first passion: Lifting and bodybuilding.

Kishore Naib (Kit Naib)


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