In recent years we have encountered a multitude of health issues. Whether your symptoms are seasonal allergies, brain fog, skin issues, or hormone imbalances, did you know that the culprit could actually be…Leaky Gut?
Leaky gut is a condition that can cause more than digestive issues. Your gut is the highway to your health; the road to either agonizing pain or a healthy life. 95% of Serotonin, the primary pipeline from you brain wholly responsible for your mood, along with 80% of your immune system takes up residence in your gut. An unhealthy gut can lead to a cluster of issues that can also result in a chronic illness. Research indicates that millions are impacted by leaky gut without even knowing it.
What is Leaky Gut?
Your gut is intended to pass micronutrients through your intestinal tract and into your bloodstream. This is how your food is absorbed. However, your gut can be hijacked, or broken, by many sources such as, infections, toxins, stress, or even through foods we eat. When this happens, toxins, microbes, and undigested food particles can be released into your bloodstream. Your immune system then begins to attack these “foreign intruders” and destroy them. Thus begins your highway to destruction; the annihilation of your healthy life.
*Digestive issues such as gas, bloating, diarrhea, or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
*Food allergies or food intolerances
*Brain fog, difficulty concentrating, ADD or ADHD
*Mood imbalances such as depression and anxiety
*Skin issues such as acne, rosacea, or eczema
*Seasonal allergies or asthma
*Hormonal imbalances such as irregular periods, PMS, or PCOS
*Diagnosis of an autoimmune disease such as rheumatoid arthritis, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, lupus, psoriasis, or celiac disease
*Diagnosis of chronic fatigue or Fibromyalgia
The main offender leading to leaky gut are, as previously mentioned, infections, toxins, stress, and food. However, here are some particular culprits to be on your watch list:
Gluten is the number one cause of leaky gut. It alone can cause the gut cells to release a protein (Zonulin) that can break apart junctions in your intestinal lining.
Inflammatory foods (such as dairy) or toxic foods (sugar and excessive alcohol) can also cause leaky gut.
Small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO)
NSAIDS (Motrin and Advil)
Acid-reducing medications (Zantac, Tagament, Pepcid, etc)
BPA (from plastics)
Stress can also be a major contributor to leaky gut!
The relationship between Leaky Gut and Autoimmune
When all the aforementioned culprits attack your gut and evoke leaky gut, your immune system goes into full body attack. It becomes overstressed, works less accurately, and eventually attacks itself. Your immune system creates antibodies, fighting off gluten and dairy which look very similar to your own body’s cells, in turn attacks your tissues. This process is called molecular mimicry and can develop into an outright autoimmunity.
According to Dr. Alessio Fasano, “Leaky gut is a necessary precondition for developing an autoimmune disease.” If left untreated, leaky gut can cause your already deteriorated condition to progress and can put you a higher risk for developing another autoimmune disease.
Repairing a leaky gut:
When I have a client suffering from leaky gut, I recommend to do the following:
- REMOVE foods and factors that damage the gut
- REPLACE with healing foods
- REPAIR with specific supplements
- REBALANCE with probiotics
Eliminate all inflammatory foods that can deteriorate your gut such as gluten, dairy, corn, and soy, in addition to toxic foods, including sugar, caffeine, and alcohol. You’ll also want to eradicate any gut infections you have, whether caused by candida, SIBO, or Parasites. My colon cleanse/parasite cleanse is incredible for this. Along with healthy diet, the cleanse rids itself of candida, etc.
Replace with healing foods such as fruits and vegetables, seeds, nuts, etc. I really like the Paleo diet for this.
Repair your gut with digestive enzymes to break down your food. Bone- Broth is a great for this. I really like L-glutamine.
Rebuild/Rebalance the beneficial bacteria in your gut with high-quality, high-potency probiotics. At least 50 billion or more for really damaged gut.
Provide your gut with the essential nutrients it needs to repair itself. Minerals and Vitamins are key for this.
I also have my clients do certain labs to see where they are deficient.
Bottom line is , get off the leaky gut road and onto the highway of good health!