COLUMBIA, Mo. — A new study from the University of Missouri School of Medicine finds a link between gut health and mental health.

The research links Irritable Bowel Syndrome and mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome impacts about 15 percent of the population, according to the study. The chronic illness includes symptoms such as abdominal pain, bloating and gas.

The Mizzou study examined data from 4,000 hospitals across the U.S over three years. It included 1.2 million IBS hospitalizations during that time.

The authors found that 38 percent of the patients hospitalized for IBS also suffered from anxiety. It also determined 27 percent of patients suffering from IBS were diagnosed with depression.

Researchers said the study shows the mental health issues are significantly higher than people who don’t suffer from IBS.

The study also found higher rates of other mental illness, like eating disorders and bipolar disorder.

Researchers concluded that IBS is associated with an increased rate of mental health disorders such as anxiety, depression, and suicide attempts and ideation.

Read more about the study at