Signs You Have Leaky Gut Syndrome And How To Heal It Naturally
Mar 7, 2018Carly FraserSave For Later
Your gut is the gateway to health. If your gut is healthy, chances are youre not doing too bad in the health sector. In fact, over 60% of chronic ailments could be healed if people just paid a little attention to what their gut was doing.
The prevalence of one particular gut ailment termed leaky gut syndrome has reached epidemic proportions, given the poor diet choices, chronic stress, toxic overload and bacterial imbalance of most individuals.
Dietary Changes Can Help
Eating an anti-inflammatory diet can make a world of difference for someone with a leaky gut.
Avoid any foods that youre allergic to such as gluten-containing foods or dairy, processed foods and alcohol, and eat plenty of omega-3 rich foods, green leafy vegetables, high-fiber foods and fermented foods that help to promote the growth of good bacteria in your gut.
If You Like Spirits Then Make Sure You Drink Them Heavily Diluted
Spirits are not as bad as many think, especially if you drink them like I do i.e. heavily diluted.
For example, I typically order a tall glass with 400ml soda water, a shot of vodka and a fresh wedge of lime. Plus minimal ice. That combination is so diluted you can barely taste the vodka. And thats how you know youve nailed it.
Importantly, I never use pop/soda/soft drinks as a mixer due to the sugar content.
But if I get sick of mixing with soda water, then I will mix with something like kombucha43. This can be pleasantly delicious, especially if you get a little naughty and choose kombucha with natural flavoring in it!
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Why Coconut Products Can Actually Be Good For Gut Health
The science has jumped ahead as we now know that the caprylic acid / medium chain fatty acids in coconut products are rich in antimicrobial properties89 that work fantastically well to decrease levels of bad yeast and bacteria in the gut .
I should note that you can also get isolated caprylic acid90 , which might be more helpful if you are tackling something like candida / yeast overgrowth head on.
How To Sleep 8 Hours A Night
- Firstly, you need to cut things from your life. This is the only way you can make time to get the sleep you need. I cut weekday social dinners out completely, cut my TV down to 20 minutes a day max, reduced my exercise sessions to tight 20 minute blocks , capped my reading time at 1 hour a day. There were a few other things too, but these big cuts were enough to boost my time available for sleep from 6-7 hours to 8-9 hours a day.
- Get to sleep on time and stay asleep. Thats the only way to get a good quality 8-9 hours. To do this follow my sleep protocol. Simply turn off all electronics around 9pm . Limit liquids. Pop 200-400 mg magnesium citrate34. Eat a handful of fat, eg some walnuts. Meditate for 10-20 minutes using Headspace app. Read a relaxing book, especially fiction, until you fall asleep. This should get you to sleep and keep you there nicely. Of course you might want to add in sleep mask and ear plugs for noise.
- Sleep is also built on what you do during the day. So each day I recommend you get some light exercise in, enjoy some sunlight or Vitamin D supplement35 and dont drink too much caffeine36 .
- Finally you want to make sure you are sleeping fairly similar times each night, so you dont disrupt your circadian rhythm too much. I try to keep a very tight 10:30pm to 7am schedule.
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Work Toward A Heavily Plant
If youre experiencing leaky gut, a diet thats fiber-filled and plant-based can decrease inflammation and irritation from gluten and other sugars. Meat and fish are fine to consume, but focus on gluten-free grains, vegetables and fruits, nuts, seeds, and healthy fats . Plus, the prebiotics found in high-fiber whole foods like asparagus and whole-grain oats are crucial to feeding the probiotic bacteria in the gut microbiome and keeping it healthy.
Eat Foods That Promote Gut Health
If you have leaky gut, its essential to consume plenty of foods that help the healthy bacteria in your gut flourish. This can help fight off yeast overgrowth and prevent it from reoccurring. As your gut microbiome plays a vital role in protecting your overall health, you will experience many positive effects beyond killing off harmful yeast.
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The Signs And Symptoms Of Leaky Gut In Kids
As there is no reliable testing for leaky gut, we need to look to the signs and symptoms that tell us it may be a problem. These signs and symptoms can be a sign of other conditions, but often leaky gut is at least involved.
Food intolerances and sensitivities particularly those that develop quickly. Its also common in people who become more sensitive to more foods over time.
Skin conditions the gut is a primary organ of elimination, and skin is secondary. If the gut isnt working optimally, the skin will pick up the slack and release more toxins from the body. This can lead to inflammatory skin concerns such as acne.
Mood imbalances this ranges from cranky and irritable behaviour from a moody kid all the way to depression and anxiety. We now know that the gut and brain are closely linked, and the gut produces many of our feel-good brain chemicals. If the gut isnt functioning correctly, the nervous system and brain will be affected.
Autoimmune conditions these conditions occur when the immune system is confused, and attacks its own organs. For example, Hashimotos attacks the thyroid, Coeliac affects the gut and rheumatoid arthritis affects the joints. Some, such as lupus, affect the whole body. Although many of these are less common in kids, they are on the rise.
Natural Solutions For Healing Leaky Gut In Kids
Leaky gut is often thrown around by health practitioners. Increased intestinal permeability is a fancy term that doctors refer to in relation to the gut lining. What you might not know is that these two things are the same. But what is it, and how do you deal with leaky gut in kids?
Watch the video or keep reading below to learn more about healing leaky gut in kids.
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In Terms Of Taking Digestive Enzymes Heres What I Recommend
- Take 1-2 with each meal. I do this just before my meal.
- If you are still having digestion issues, consider upping the dose to 2-3. You most likely will be fine with 1-2.
- During the early stages of leaky gut recovery make sure you take them before any meal or snack, even a simple protein shake for example. The idea is to really give the digestive system a helping hand at every turn.
Most importantly, look for a digestive enzyme supplement that contains the best enzymes for supporting digestion of all food groups. Heres the list:
Since there are 100s of different digestive enzymes on the market I often get asked, which one is worth taking.
Well, as you might have read in my article on digestive enzymes it is really important to choose a digestive enzyme complex that ticks 3 boxes.
Ditch All Sugars And Dairy Except For Some Gut
First I asked you to ransack your house and bin all the grains and legumes.
Now Im asking you to find anything with sugar or dairy in it, and add that to the scrapheap as well! By the end of today youll probably have no food left in the house
But thats alright.
In fact, the process of elimination is without doubt the most important step towards healing your leaky gut and feeling great again.
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The Role Of Leaky Gut In Overall Health Remains Unclear
Leaky gut could be the cause of some health problems, or a sign of something larger, says Dr. Fasano. The science is still up in the air. For example, digestive conditions like inflammatory bowel disease, celiac disease, and Crohns disease share many of the same symptoms as leaky gut, and all are linked with chronic inflammation, but its not known how, or if, they are connected.
The challenge is that its difficult to measure the strength of a persons gut barrier, so you cant know for certain when leaky gut is really present, or what influence it may have elsewhere in the body, says Dr. Fasano.
Is Leaky Gut Real
Your gut, also known as the gastrointestinal tract, includes over 4,000 square feet of intestinal epithelial lining that controls what gets into your bloodstream.
If unhealthy, this lining may be leaky with holes or cracks that allow bacteria, toxins, antigens, and partially digested food to penetrate the tissues beneath it.
That can trigger inflammation and changes in the gut flora , which could lead to problems within your digestive tract and beyond.
Although leaky gut is not recognized by mainstream medical professionals as a condition, its generally recognized as a symptom.
According to a
currently available specifically for leaky gut. The treatment recommendations youre likely to receive from your doctor will be focused on the underlying condition theyve diagnosed, which might include leaky gut as a symptom. For example:
- If youve been diagnosed withceliac disease, following a gluten-free diet may help heal your gut.
- If youve been diagnosed with IBD, anti-inflammatory drugs, immune system suppressors, antibiotics, pain relievers, and supplements such as iron, calcium, and vitamin D may help the lining of your gut to recover.
- If youve been diagnosed with IBS, anticholinergic medications, tricyclic antidepressants, SSRIs, antidepressants, antibiotics, pain relievers, or medications specifically for IBS may help reduce your symptoms.
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Some Cooking Notes For This Recipe
- Make sure to run your fermenting jar through the dishwasher before using it a hot wash will help remove any bacteria that could interfere with the fermentation.
- For starter culture, you can use a vegetable or dairy based one. I tend to personally opt for the former. Each sachet will likely have a couple of grams of culture. And come with instructions on how to prep it, before adding it to the jar.
- Your kraut can be stored for more than the 2 week period mentioned in the graphic. In fact, unopened, you could keep it for 6-9 months easily.
- But once you open your kraut, keep it in the fridge, and for max 2 months.
P.S. If you ever get sick of eating fermented vegetables then consider a probiotic supplement and of course, just be thankful you dont have to resort to a fecal transplant to restore your gut flora!
Identify The Foods You Should Avoid:
While you take the time to consume the right kind of food, it is equally important to avoid eating certain foods to improve your gut health. Some foods come with higher possibilities of causing inflammation in the body. Such foods can also negatively affect healthy bacteria while promoting the growth of unhealthy gut bacteria responsible for many chronic health conditions. In order to ensure that this does not happen, it is vital to avoid consuming excess junk food, foods containing artificial sweeteners, refined oils, sugary beverages, processed food, and alcohol. All these foods can harm healthy gut bacteria and compromise the guts protective lining. It is also vital to stay away from wheat-based products like wheat flour, cereals, pasta, and bread, which can also trigger symptoms of an unhealthy gut. Also avoid eating foods such as oats, triticale, seitan, bulgur, rye, and barley frequently. Eating a lot of grain foods that contain gluten is very problematic as well.
In addition to that, it is best also to stay away from processed foods, processed meat, baked foods, and snacks. Processed meat foods include hot dogs, bacon, deli meats, and cold cuts. Baked goods include pizza, pastries, pies, cookies, muffins, and cakes. Snack foods to stay away from consist of the following pretzels, popcorn, muesli bars, and crackers. Sauces like salad dressings, teriyaki, soy, and hoisin sauce ideally have to be avoided as well.
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Do Breathing Exercises Before And After Each Meal
100% natural solutions to health problems are the best. They cost nothing and theyre always available to you. And this probably rates up there with the most effective.
The benefit to your leaky gut from this idea is that deep breathing before and after a meal will reduce stress on the body so it can focus on digestion. And as a side effect it will get you in the zone to eat mindfully, eg chew more, eat slower etc.
What Is Leaky Gut
First things first, the term gut is the colloquial term for the digestive system. It encompasses every organ between your mouth and your anus.
The major organs include:
and the small and large intestines
Throughout this gastrointestinal tube is a diverse microscopic community of bacteria. You have a symbiotic relationship with most of these single-celled organisms.
The beneficial bacteria support your immune system, detoxify from chemicals, and boost nutrient absorption.
Think of this healthy bacteria as your guts best friend.
A diverse and strong population of these helpful creatures is necessary for a strong digestive system.
Everything that you breathe, drink, and eat enters your gastrointestinal tube. In the digestive system, ingested molecules succumb to a fate that includes some or all of the following
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Heres How Digestive Enzymes Can Help
Firstly, they work alongside our bodys own natural enzymes to take the food we eat and break it down into individual nutrients that our body can then actually absorb27.
Example of nutrients in foods would be things like amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins and minerals. All the fuel our body loves!
This role is super important for those of us with leaky gut, because our damaged gut lining is potentially not absorbing nutrients properly, and yet needs the nutrients to repair itself. i.e. digestive enzymes can help us get out of the vicious cycle.
Secondly, by helping us break down food better, digestive enzymes also ensure less large food molecules make their way through our gut. This is a big win since it means less irritation of the gut lining, as well as fewer large food molecules making their way through our gut barrier and into the bloodstream .
You can find an in-depth explanation of all of this in my article on digestive enzymes and leaky gut.
And If You Want To Support Your Poor Ol Gut Get Some Probiotics
If youve ever drunk a little too much alcohol, then youve no doubt felt firsthand how it can cause havoc to the delicate balance of bacteria in our guts44 .
So taking probiotics can be a smart idea to keep things in better balance and more able to deal with those couple of glasses of pinot.
Now, if like me you cant stomach eating sauerkraut45 every time you drink , then consider trying a probiotic supplement, which well look at in the next point.
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Video: Heal Leaky Gut Syndrome With Natural Remedies
07/12/2017 | 1 min. read
Dr. Drew Sinatra
Leaky gut syndrome is a condition that affects the small intestine. What happens is that the small intestine becomes more permeable to substances. It might be bacterium, it might be other substances like food proteins.
When the small intestine becomes more permeable or leaky, those proteins can get into the bloodstream and cause an immune reaction.
Meditate And Get Enough Sleep
Stress management is also essential. Stress hormones wreak havoc on health and impair digestive function.
Activities like meditation and yoga can help heal these junctions by reducing stress neurotransmitters and hormones and increasing the happy hormones dopamine and oxytocin.
Take it a step further.
Mindful eating is imperative. Eating in a calm, pleasant place and having gratitude for your food improves digestion.
Dont forget adequate sleep. You need at least 7 hours of sleep per night to rest, restore, and repair your body.
What Is The Main Cause Of Leaky Gut
There is no one main cause of leaky gut. Here are some of the most common drivers:
Stress and depression contribute to leaky gut .
One study even found that couples in unhappy marriages had leakier guts than couples in happy marriages .
Sugar has been shown to increase intestinal permeability .
Lack of fibre
Your gut bacteria need fibre. When they eat the fibre you eat, they produce a long list of chemicals to keep your gut healthy. Some of the most important of these are short-chain fatty acids . Without enough SCFAs, your gut can become leaky .
Additives in processed foods
If theres an ingredient on your food label you cant pronounce, dont eat it: emulsifiers in particular have been found to increase leaky gut . Plant milk and processed sauces and ready meals often contain emulsifiers.
Too much exercise
High-intensity exercise over a long time contributes to leaky gut . This is because your body releases stress hormones when you exercise. While moderate exercise or intense exercise in short bursts is very good for you, too much isnt.
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowthan overgrowth or imbalance of microbes of the small intestineappears to exist hand-in-hand with leaky gut .
SIBO has been found in upto 85% of people with IBS symptoms. To find out more about SIBO, check out our blog SIBO symptoms: what they mean and what to do next.
If you want to find out how to take a SIBO test, read What does a SIBO test show: diagnosis, accuracy and results.