The gut is the gateway to health. If your gut is healthy, chances are that you’re in good health. Unfortunately, a lot of people today suffer from leaky gut syndrome, which can lead to a host of healthy issues.
But what is leaky gut exactly?
The gut is naturally permeable to very small molecules in order to absorb vital nutrients. This is a normal process. However, in sensitive people, gluten for example can cause the gut cells to release zonulin, a protein that can break apart tight junctions in the intestinal lining. Other factors such as infections, toxins, stress and age can also cause the tight junctions to become looser.
The more loose those junctions get, the more leaky your gut becomes. The issue with a leaky gut is that things like toxins, microbes and undigested food particles can escape the intestine and instead travel through the body via the bloodstream. These particles aren’t supposed to be there and are recognised by the immune system as foreign invaders that need to be attacked. The immune response to these invaders and can lead to a host of issues.
What causes leaky gut?
The main culprits are foods (such as gluten), infections, and toxins. Any inflammatory food like sugar or excessive alcohol can also lead to leaky gut issues. Especially dangerous are medications such as antibiotics and acid-reducing drugs.
Signs You Have a Leaky Gut
1. Digestive issues: gas, bloating, diarrhea2. Hayfever or asthma
3. Mood and mind issues such as depression, anxiety, ADD or ADHD
4. Hormonal imbalances such as PMS or PCOS
5. Food allergies or intolerances
6. Candida overgrowth7. Skin problems: acne, rosacea, exzema
8. Chronic faigue
9. Autoimmune diseases such as arthritis, Hashimoto’s, lupus, psoriasis or celiac disease
If you have one or several of these symptom, chances are you might have a leaky gut. Check with your local doctor and educate yourself on Dr. Lipman’s website, on of the leading experts on gut health and leaky gut. You can also read many studies about the subject here.