Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

What is a Leaky Gut Syndrome?

Hippocrates the father of modern medicine said “all diseases begin in the gut” and the research of present time has proven him to be right. Essentially, leaky gut syndrome is an undiagnosed syndrome which according to some alternative health practitioners is the cause of wide range of serious chronic diseases like diabetes mellitus, lupus, or multiple sclerosis. It’s a hypothetical syndrome, whose hypothesis is vague and largely unproven but some claim that the leakage prompts the body to initiate an immune reaction that can lead to the above mentioned conditions.

In human body, the lining of bowel or intestinal tract works like a barrier for entrance of harmful substances into the blood circulation. This semi-permeability or selective permeability allows only essential nutrients to enter into the system. However, in some cases bacteria, undigested food particles, protein like gluten and toxins can easily cross this membrane and can cause harmful immune reaction. It happens as a consequence of intestinal tight junction malfunction wherein the tight junction in the gut, which controls selective passage through intestinal lining, does not work properly.

Symptoms of Leaky Gut Syndrome

These days leaky gut syndrome is a rapidly growing condition affecting millions of people. As it might be thought by the name leaky gut syndrome affects only the digestive system, but in reality it can cause a number of systemic health conditions.

Research suggests that the cause of food allergies, low energy, joint pain and other autoimmune diseases could be the result of leaky gut syndrome progression.

It is very important to know about the symptoms of leaky gut syndrome so that one can take timely medical advice. Some of the common symptoms are listed below:

  • Sudden Weight Gain
  • Digestive system related problems
  • Sudden Food Sensitivities
  • Increased Fatigue and joint pains
  • Some thyroid conditions
  • Skin problems like redness and acne
  • Suffering from sudden Headaches
  • Bloating problem
  • Frequent Colds
  • Constipation and Diarrhea
  • It can progress to syndrome x

One of the best ways to know about this disease is to take Leaky Gut Syndrome test if someone possesses any of the symptoms that are stated above. It is also not necessary that everyone will have these symptoms so it is good decision to go for test as this problem can also cause some serious health problems like Eczema, psoriasis, depression, inflammatory bowel disease, muscle pain and chronic fatigue. There is a strong association between leaky gut syndrome and autoimmune diseases including type 1 diabetes mellitus, according to journal of diabetes.

Causes of Leaky Gut Syndrome

One of the best ways to take prevention from leaky gut syndrome is to identify the main causes of this disease so that proper care can be taken in advance for healthy life. The major causes are listed below:

  • Unhealthy or poor diet
  • Longtime stress
  • Excess of toxins
  • Imbalance of Bacteria in body or Dysbiosis

These four causes are the main reasons for leaky gut syndrome in general. The most important component of food which can damage the gut lining is the protein from the food like sugar, meat, un-sprouted jots and dairy products. The proteins like lectins when get attached with gut lining can damaged the tight junctions in the intestinal lining. Stress is a cause for many diseases as brain is directly related with other functions of the body; so avoid too much mental stress for healthy life. To avoid toxins, have healthy, safe and hygiene meal and specially water. It is very important to have a balance of bacteria in body i.e. beneficial vs. harmful. Imbalance may lead to leaky gut syndrome.

Diagnosis of Leaky Gut Syndrome

Other than the observation of symptoms, leaky gut syndrome is diagnosed with the help of the following tests:

  • Zonulin or lactulose test
  • IgG food intolerance test
  • Stool test
  • Organic acid vitamin and mineral deficiency tests

Treatment and Diet for Leaky Gut Syndrome

The best treatment for leaky gut syndrome is by altering the food habit and adding healthy food to the diet that helps in healing the gut. The steps for doing so are as follows:

  • Remove Food from Meal that Causes Leaky Gut Syndrome: The first step is to take care of what food items are you taking in. Food plays a major role in the healing process of leaky gut syndrome. So cut down the food items that produce lectin and can harm the gut lining like grains, sugar, meat and dairy products. However, consult the doctor or a dietician before doing this.
  • Add Food Items that Helps in Healing Leaky Gut Syndrome: The next step is to make habit of taking leaky gut healing food items. The best leaky gut diet and food contains bone broth, raw cultured dairy, fermented vegetables, coconut products and sprouted seeds. Patients can also take food items which have omega-3 fat that is very beneficial in the healing process of leaky gut syndrome.
  • Supplements that Help Treat Leaky Gut Syndrome: Take some supplements to repair leaky gut syndrome this is also one of the easy treatment one can go for. Probiotics can repair damaged gut. This helps in development of good bacteria and destroys bad bacteria. So it is advisable from medical experts to take probiotics rich food and supplement for the treatment of leaky gut syndrome.
  • Boosting Digestion: Patients can also take other supplements like digestive enzymes like one or two capsules before taking meal or as advised by the doctor so that food can get fully digested otherwise un-digested food particles can again harm the gut lining.
  • Taking Glutamine Powder for Leaky Gut Syndrome: This is an essential amino acid supplement that has anti-inflammatory properties. This aids in the repair and growth of intestinal lining and act as a protective coating for the cell walls and repels irritants. Take 2–5 grams of this powder twice daily.
  • Licorice Root: Use Licorice Root (DGL) which is an adaptogenic herb which helps in balancing the cortisol levels and enhances acid production in the stomach. It supports the natural process of growth and protects gut lining. Take this herb especially when the cause for leaky gut syndrome is emotional distress. Take 500 milligrams twice daily or as advised by a healthcare professional for the treatment of leaky gut syndrome.
  • Quercetin Improves Healing of Leaky Gut Syndrome: It is proven that Quercetin enhances gut barrier function by closing the gut as it supports production of tight junction proteins. It stabilizes the mast cells and also decreases the release of histamine that is commonly found in food intolerance. Take 500 milligrams three times daily with meals or as per the recommendation for effective treatment of leaky gut syndrome.

The damaged gut does not heal in a couple of days; rather it is takes a couple of weeks and also depends upon the seriousness of the condition and how the treatment is taken. So the instructions and the treatment process needs to be followed very seriously and carefully.

Preventions of Leaky Gut Syndrome

The best preventions for this disease are listed below:

  • Keep good eating habits and have balanced diet as the main cause for this health problem is unhealthy food practice and those items that can’t get digested properly like conventional dairy products and meat products.
  • Avoid taking too much of mental stress as brain is associated with other functions of the body. So stay stress free and happy.
  • To avoid toxins intake, take hygienic meal and mineral water. It is very important to take hygienic meal to reduce the chance of intake of harmful bacteria.
  • Avoid the usage of tap water and from other unhealthy sources for drinking purpose.
  • Avoid drinking alcohol and smoking

By taking care of eating habits, one can easily protect gut from damage and if someone is already suffering from leaky gut syndrome then these dietary habit will help to heal the damaged gut lining.

Conclusion

Leaky Gut Syndrome is a common disease that can happen to anyone at any time or age due to having poor eating habits and Dysbiosis. If timely preventions are not taken then it may cause some other serious health problems also. So it is very important to understand insights of this disease as most people are not able to figure out this problem in the initial stage. The treatment of this disease starts from taking healthy food and there are also some gut healing supplements available. Nevertheless it is suggested that prevention is better than cure.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: July 9, 2018

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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