Understanding Leaky gut syndrome has been the absolute CORNERSTONE of my healing process. There is now more research than ever before which means that medicine is FINALLY catching up! The gut has long been thought to be our “second brain”
I strongly believe (and it’s been the conclusion of many studies again and again) that this is the underlying problem in a large array of disease processes and NEEDS to be addressed before any healing can take place.
It is a term that has been thrown around more and more in the medical community but very shallowly understood by most traditional medicine physicians. Its fascinating to think that the gut is a major immune system organ and so much can be impacted just by a proper whole food based diet…
Leaky gut syndrome is essentially impaired intestinal permeability, dysfunction of the immune system and dysfunctional nutrient absorption…YIKES that sounds pretty bad
THAT FACE PRETTY MUCH SUMS UP HOW I FEEL ABOUT IT HAHA (TIM TIM)
WHAT’S THE PROBLEM WITH IMPAIRED INTESTINAL PERMEABILITY YOU SAY?
Well where should we start… Dr. Axe has a fantastic list ( this is directly from his site on the topic) but it was too complete to not include. There are significant and strong links in research to the following problems
- Gastric ulcers
- Infectious diarrhea
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
- Inflammatory bowel diseases (Crohnâs, ulcerative colitis)
- Celiac disease
- Esophageal and colorectal cancer
- Respiratory infections
- Acute inflammation conditions (sepsis, SIRS, multiple organ failure)
- Chronic inflammatory conditions (such asÂ arthritis)
- Obesity-related metabolic diseases (fatty liver, Type II diabetes, heart disease)
- Autoimmune disease (lupus, multiple sclerosis, Type I diabetes and more) (2)
- Parkinsonâs disease (3)
- Chronic fatigue syndromeÂ (4)
- Obesity (5)
DIGGING UP THE ROOT CAUSE
The standard American diet is far from this and it’s no surprise that our country has some of the sickest, fattest people. We have the highest rate of autoimmune disease, cancer, heart disease, diabetes and obesity. One of the richest countries in the world is also the one dying the fastest. This cartoon was pretty funny and pretty sad at the same time. We’ve been wired to think that grains, bread, pastas are the foundation of our dietary needs. um WRONG and its caused so many problems.
SIGNS THAT YOU MAY HAVE LEAKY GUT SYNDROME
- Food sensitivitiesÂ issues with dairy, gluten, eggs, corn, soy etc that seem to develop over time and get worse
- Gluten intolerance (2)Â Gluten has been shown to be a trigger for the development of leaky gut syndrome. I separated gluten from other food sensitivities because this is a BIG ONE.
A PERSONAL BLURB BY ME: ( I was tested for celiac thinking that I was for sure either allergic or had true celiac disease because of how bad my reaction was…well you guessed it my testing all came back NEGATIVE it was just a “sensitivity” but WHY???????
- Thyroid problems which can be linked to unexplained weight gain, fatigue and depression, the body starts to attack the thyroid (see #6 for autoimmune disease)
- Joint painÂ which gets worse over time
- Inflammatory bowel diseases such as crohns, IBS, or ulcerative colitis
- Digestion issues including
- Skin problems including acne, psoriasis (4)Â , seemingly “random” skin rashes
A PERSONAL BLURB BY ME: prior to realizing I had a problem, I constantly had inflammatory reactive skin irritation on my hands for 4 years, it was terrible, I would get blisters, rashes, hives and even little pimples between my fingers! it was terrible. I tried steroid creams which seemed to calm it down while I used it but definitely a struggle for a long time. It wasn’t until I stopped gluten and dairy and started healing my leaky gut problem that the skin issues literally DISAPPEARED. It was like nothing was ever wrong….coincidence? I think NOT
- Respiratory issuesÂ like asthma, seasonal allergies, excessive/frequent sinus infections (5)Â Â and most of the time also in combination with irritable bowel syndrome…the connections here are CRAZY
- Autoimmune disease such as hashimotos thyroid disease, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, muscular sclerosis, with some research now showing a relationship also with parkinson’s and other neurodegenerative disorders (6)Â . To REALLY understand this phenomenon we have to look at research which has linked a protein called “zonulin” to the development of autoimmune disease (7)
HERE COMES THE SCIENCE PEOPLE…READY SET GO!
Leaky gut syndrome is essentially the failure of the epithelial lining (thin cell lining separating the intestine from the blood stream) to maintain it’s “tight junctions”. Tight junctions are supposed to be just that, TIGHT to keep out bacteria, food particles, toxins out of the blood stream while ALLOWING nutrients from our food to safely pass through for our bodies to be able to use.
WHAT ARE TRIGGERS?
Over time if we eat too many “trigger foods” like gluten (3)Â and dairy,Â Â or are exposed to too many toxins, medications and pathogens, theÂ tight junctions become weak and start to separate, which is a disaster because now bacteria and food particles start to pass through the barrier! Because our bodies are so good at protecting ourselves, the immune system is automatically triggered and starts to attack theseÂ “invaders”Â (which are actually just food we eat and bacteria which is normally found in our gut) but not recognized as “normal” by the immune system. They’re not SUPPOSED to be there so naturally the body starts an inflammatory cascade. If this keeps happening, the immune system will start reacting to foods and creating allergies, triggering autoimmune diseases, and causing quite a bit of GI distress.
THE ULTIMATE SOLUTION
We must focus on healing the leaky gut and changing the diet to cultivate healing and health, a lot of times that means cutting out gluten, dairy, lectins (night shade vegetables) sometimes permanently. Also incorporating specific healing foods and supplements
- REMOVE triggers like food, stress, drugs etc. I usually recommend patients start by eliminating gluten, dairy, lectins (processed food and sugar from the diet.
- START eating healing foods including coconut products, bone broth, fermented vegetables, sprouted grains, raw cultured dairy products and other anti-inflammatory foods
- SUPPLEMENTATION specific to impaired intestinal permeability such
- Quercetin which repairs the gut lining
- I use Thorne Research brand
- Restore a mineral which restores the tight junctions
- L-Glutamine an amino acid which regrows tissue (body builders use this stuff to grow muscle, also happens to re-grow damaged intestinal lining)
- I use Thorne Research brand
- Digestive enzyme to help with carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolism since the body’s own absorption mechanisms are impaired, this will ensure that proper amounts of nutrients are being absorbed which will help with healing as well.
- Quercetin which repairs the gut lining
- REBALANCE the gut flora of GOOD and BAD bacteria WITH A GOOD PROBIOTIC
- Standard process has a fantastic probiotic (these can only be purchased through a certified provider distributor – chiropractors, homeopathic doctors, and some pain management specialists use these and can sell them to you. Also “garden of life” is the brand that I use with 100 billion bacterial count and 13 different strains. MAKE SURE WHEN GETTING A PROBIOTIC you get one with as many different strains as you can find as well as a high bacterial count.
I WILL HAVE MORE SPECIFIC RECOMMENDATIONS IN COMING POSTS…FOR NOW
a cute baby in a diaper having a good time ð