Eat Prebiotic Foods To Fuel The Good Bacteria In Your Gut
Prebiotics are types of fiber that are indigestible , but digestible by the bacteria in our colon/large intestine. They just love to break it down and ferment it. In other words, prebiotics are the fuel they need to grow strong98.
And when our good bacteria is strong they can help us digest food better, support mood, improve immune system function, fend off bad bacteria, and of course, help with bowel movements and intestinal wall strength.
Since prebiotics feed the probiotics/good bacteria in our digestive system, we can think of them as actually being equal to probiotics in terms of importance. In fact, theyre a team!
But before you go crazy eating all types of prebiotic-rich foods, it is important to know that during the very early stages of fixing your gut health, you should be careful to avoid prebiotics that are high in FODMAPs, which I explain in my FODMAPs & leaky gut article.
When Should You Be Tested For Leaky Gut
Certain symptoms and conditions can give you clues that its worth testing for leaky gut.
Leaky gut is a symptom rather than a condition. But, confusingly, its a symptom that can contribute to other conditions. These can be within the digestive system, including:
· Type-1 diabetes23
Just to be clear: we dont know whether leaky gut is driving these conditions or if its the other way aroundbut research suggests theyre connected. If you experience any of the above, its worth testing to see if leaky gut is related to your symptoms.
How Do You Heal Your Gut
Because gut bacteria have such a close relationship with your immune system and intestinal cells, the inner ecosystem is your target when healing a leaky gut. Your gut wall is more than a barrier. Its the pathway that your gut bacteria and immune system use to hold conversation.
Often, several variables need to be considered while going through the process of healing a leaky gut in the event you have several issues going on at once. Regardless of where you are, here are my most highly suggested ways to try to strengthen your gut wall and soothe your immune system by supporting healthy communities of good gut bacteria:
Eat Probiotic Foods | Probiotic foods are foods that have been inoculated with good bacteria and then allowed to ferment. During the fermentation process, good bacteria consume sugars in food and form robust communities. When you eat probiotic foods like cultured vegetables and kefir, you escort these robust communities of probiotics into your colon where they do the most good.
If you have SIBO | I would hold off on introducing cultured vegetables and try young coconut kefir insteadit provides a wonderful source of easily assimilated nutrients and is full of beneficial bacteria that aids digestion and build immunity.
Bifidobacteria is best | This is a probiotic bacteria to use to target leaky gut , which has been shown to help balance the immune system and control the expression of pro-inflammatory messages .
Examples of prebiotic foods include:
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Historically Microbiome Testing Has Been Pretty Useless In Terms Of Takeaways
In fact, if you asked me whether it was worth doing only 2-3 years ago, I would have said heck no!
I remember when I got my first few tests it was more out of scientific wonder, than anything else.
My doctor and I would be sitting there pouring over the data and just looking at each other goingokay, so now what?
It may as well have been jibberish.
Stop Eating Wheat / Gluten
For those of us with leaky gut syndrome, wheat 1 is public enemy number one! Nothing compares. And thats because these 3 types of grains contain gluten.
Gluten is generally considered hard to digest, can pierce holes in our gut lining and thanks to gliadin it is also able to raise levels of zonulin, thereby increasing the size of the openings of our tight junctions2.
Before you say Woah, woah, slowdown egg head, our tight junctions are kind of like the gatekeepers of the openings in our gut lining. Think of them like the Nights Watch in Game of Thrones.
When you add the above 3 problems together, you can see just how much gluten can make your gut more permeable or leaky i.e. letting more things through.
Which in turn means more toxins have the potential to slip through your gut lining and into your bloodstream, thus causing inflammation and a raised immune response3.
So even though I used to love spending my Sunday evenings gorging on a large Margarita pizza followed up by a series of different colored donuts, these days I would rather eat the cardboard box the pizza comes in!
Im pretty sure my gut would digest it better.
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If You Like White Wine Add Ice Cubes Or Water Or Seltzer
This spritzer idea might seem sacrilegious to my French readers, but hey, it is an easy way for us to keep our total wine consumption limited, whilst still being able to enjoy a few glasses on a Saturday night.
The ideal amount of dilution would be 50%. So it is half wine, half non-sugar mixer .
Probably the #1 thing to look out for when choosing a white wine, is dry v sweet. The former contains much less sugar. That means sauvignon blanc and pinot grigio are your new BFFs.
I personally tend to limit my white wine consumption to the summer months, and so generally only drink red wine, which leads us to the next point
Gut Microbiota And Leaky Gut Syndrome
The intestines are also home to a wide range of bacteria called gut microbiota. These bacteria aid digestion, protect the intestinal wall and support normal immune function. LGS may involve imbalances in gut microbiota.
According to a 2016 article, imbalances in the gut microbiota can trigger the bodys immune response. This results in gut inflammation and increased intestinal permeability . IP describes how easily substances can leak out of the intestines and into the bloodstream.
Experts still do not know exactly why autism develops. However, scientists have suggested that various genetic, biological, and environmental factors may play a role.
Recently, scientists have begun investigating a possible link between gut microbiota, IP, and autism.
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How To Tell If You Have A Leaky Gut
April 26, 2019
The intestinal barrier plays a critical role human health and disease. It allows for the absorption of nutrients from the food we eat, while at the same time, it protects against the entry of allergens, as well as bacteria, fungi, and parasites. Essentially, it plays the role of a gatekeeper. When this barrier malfunctions, it can cause allergies and autoimmune disorders. This is a condition we call leaky gut. But how do you know if you have it? Read on to find out.
04:48 The basics of intestinal permeability06:52 Is it a good idea to test for leaky gut?09:34 Testing options for intestinal permeability11: 50 The lactulose/mannitol test15:59 The antigenic permeability screen
Chris Kresser: Hey everybody, its Chris Kresser here, welcome to another episode of Revolution Health Radio. And we are going to switch things up a little bit. If youve been listening to this show for a while, youll know that I have cycled through a few different formats over the years. Initially I did single-topic episodes where we dive deep on a particular topic, then I did some Q& A shows where I would answer multiple questions from listeners. Ive always done some interviews, and thats of course what Ive focused on over the past several months. Its been almost exclusively an interview show. And I am going to now do some Q& As again.
But lets start with a question from Kent and lets give a listen and Ill come back and answer it.
Consider A Megadose Of L
First of all, its worth explaining that L-Glutamine is just an amino acid . And in fact, it is the most abundant amino acid naturally found in our blood!14
But heres the cool thing about it
you see, just like protein powder feeds your muscles so they can repair and grow stronger, L-Glutamine can fuel your gut lining15 so it too can repair damaged cells and come back healthier.
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Is Leaky Gut Syndrome A Real Thing
Although leaky gut syndrome is a marketing term, a leaking gut is a real thing in medicine. Its best described as a loss in intestinal barrier function combined with increased intestinal permeability. Put simply, the lining of our intestine controls what materials may pass from the gut into the bloodstream.
How The Leaky Gut Breakthrough Kit Can Help
If youre still working on restoring your gut health or experience a setback, be sure to follow my Leaky Gut Breakthrough® Programand add in the supplements from my Leaky Gut Breakthrough® Kit. The Leaky Gut Breakthrough® Kit contains the four powerful nutritional supplements I recommend for optimal gut barrier and immune function.
- Leaky Gut Revive® is a powerful combination of important amino acids and botanicals that help promote your bodys intestinal tissue repair mechanisms, repair damage caused by inflammation, restore your guts healthy mucosal membrane, and maintain a healthy gut barrier.
- The Myers Way® Collagen Protein contains key amino acids needed for tissue repair and helps maintain a healthy intestinal barrier, as well as supports healthy bones and joints! Its sourced from grass-fed, pasture-raised beef, and is 100% non-GMO and kosher.
- My Complete Enzymes formula supports optimal digestion and nutrient absorption, as well as assists the bodys intestinal repair and inflammation response mechanisms.
- Finally, my Probiotic Capsules 100 Billion is a potent, fourteen-strain probiotic totaling 100 billion CFUs per capsule for maximum digestive health and immune support.
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How Do You Treat Leaky Gut
Remember, leaky gut is not an official medical condition. It is a process that causes the gut lining to be damaged from something else. There arent any accurate or approved tests to diagnose leaky gut. There also are no FDA-approved treatments currently available specifically for leaky gut. Researchers are still trying to figure out what causes leaky gut and how it may affect the body.
If leaky gut is associated with a medical condition, you need to treat the underlying condition. Sometimes these treatments can help restore the gut lining, but its not known why this happens. Its possible that improving leaky gut can improve a disease, but much more research needs to be done to prove this. Also, diseases associated with leaky gut do not always automatically improve when the gut lining is healed.
Feed Them Nourishing Nutrient
Slowly introduce raw and other nutrient-rich foods from the list above into your dogs diet as soon as possible. If your dog has been eating dry commercial food for years, do this step extra slowly in order to minimize digestive distress.
Once you do change your dogs diet, avoid giving them any type of processed treats or human starch foods, like sweets. Instead, add a little coconut oil to their diet in order to help keep bad bacteria at bay.
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Can You Treat Leaky Gut
You can, but the approach is similar to diagnosing a broken car, says Dr. Fasano. “You dont know the exact problem until the mechanic lifts the hood, looks around, and tries different things there is not a simple, direct approach to fixing the problem,” he says. “Its the same with leaky gut. We have to try different strategies to see what helps.”
Your first step is to share your symptoms with your doctor. If leaky gut is a possibility, he or she can try several strategies to help relieve symptoms and reduce inflammation. The most common is to review your diet and eliminate known dietary causes of inflammation, such as excessive consumption of alcohol and processed foods, and to explore whether you have any food sensitivities for instance, to gluten or dairy. “In theory, reducing inflammation from your diet like this also may rebuild the gut lining and stop further leakage,” says Dr. Fasano.
The best way to protect yourself from leaky gut is to invest more in your overall digestive health, he adds. This means being more attentive about following a gut-healthy diet that limits processed foods and high-fat and high-sugar foods, and includes enough fiber. Sticking to a regular exercise program also can strengthen your digestive system. For example, studies have suggested that taking a 15-to 20-minute walk after a meal can aid in digestion. “Your gastrointestinal system is complex, but caring for it doesnt have to be,” says Dr. Fasano.
How To Fix Leaky Gut
Instead of treating leaky gut symptoms, you need to get to the root of autoimmune disease, and it starts by healing leaky gut. To restore the health of your intestinal wall, I recommend following functional medicines 4R Approach.
I walk you through this entire approach in-depth in my Leaky Gut Breakthrough® Program, which includes a 30-day meal plan with recipes and shopping lists to make following it easy and stress-free. You can also find all four of the gut-repairing supplements listed above in my Leaky Gut Breakthrough® Kit.
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Once You Start Feeling Pretty Good Consider Trying Gut
Heres the ultimate list of gut-friendly dairy you can consider. But make sure to stick to organic dairy products .
The beautiful thing with the list above is most are lactose free or very low in lactose. For example, yogurt contains bacteria which eat up the lactose sugar during fermentation25. Or for example, grass fed butter is an end product with minimal inherent lactose.
Also many other above are naturally low in A1 casein.
To work out what is best for you, I recommend strongly working with a registered dietitian. They are magicians at helping us pinpoint the good from the bad.
For example, with my RDN we worked out I can tolerate goats cheese or buffalo mozzarella quite well. And also, a probiotic-rich organic unflavored yogurt works wonders for me as a dessert.
But everyone is different. And I implore you to first do 30 days completely dairy free, so you can then introduce one dairy product at a time and see how your body responds to it.
Chew Each Bite Of Food 20 Times Like Gandhi
Chew your drink and drink your food, Gandhi.
Taking a digestive enzyme supplement will help breakdown your food when it reaches your stomach and intestines. And I think you should definitely take them I know I do.
But to really give your gut a helping hand , you should basically pulverize your food in your mouth by chewing each bite around 20 times.
The more you chew the more it gets pre-broken down and the more digestive enzymes you yourself produce via your saliva glands85.
By chewing your food like this, youll find your gut is better able to process it. Most of all, your body will be able to absorb more of the nutrition86and your leaky gut will not be bombarded by so many large undigested food particles.
And of course, 20 chews per bite of food is just a rough average. So if youre eating something really tough, like Uncle Bobs well done steak , then up the chew count, eg to 30.
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Leaky Gut Before And After
Lets go back to thinking of your gut lining as a drawbridge. When you have leaky gut, your drawbridge opens to allow undigested food particles, toxins, bacteria, and viruses to escape into your bloodstream and cause inflammation throughout your body.
As soon as you begin healing leaky gut, your drawbridge starts to lower, keeping those inflammatory agents within the safety of your gut where they can be broken down and expelled from your body via pooping, peeing, or sweating.
A Hint Of Truth Intestinal Permeability
In some individuals, for a variety of reasons, the physical structure of their intestines is compromised. The tight junctions, which control what materials the intestine absorbs, dont work properly, allowing larger substances to cross over into the bloodstream. This is known as intestinal permeability.
Physicians sometimes find increased intestinal permeability in those who have Crohns disease, celiac disease, in individuals receiving chemotherapy, and those who have a high intake of bowel-damaging substances such as aspirin and alcohol. However, intestinal permeability is a symptom of these ailments, not a cause it does not lead to anything more than inflammation of the bowel walls, and it is not leaky gut syndrome. Furthermore, research shows that increased intestinal permeability sometimes has beneficial effects, such as improving water and nutrient absorption as well as activating the immune system.1
The Myth: According to the proponents of leaky gut syndrome, bacteria and toxins enter the bloodstream through these defective tight junctions and wreak havoc throughout the body, causing bloating, gas, cramps, inflammatory bowel disease , as well as fatigue, food sensitivities, joint pain, moodiness, irritability, sleeplessness, autism, and skin problems like eczema and psoriasis.
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