Leaky gut syndrome is a type of digestive syndrome. As the name implies, the issue is basically due to inflammation around intestinal walls and lack of protective normal bacterial flora. If the intestines are more permeable, it becomes easier for all sorts of substances to leak out of the gut into your bloodstream, creating inflammation and symptoms from other systems outside of the GI Tract. Over time, this leads to higher levels of inflammatory toxins in the bloodstream.
It cannot be stressed enough all of the distant effects that abnormal gut flora has on your overall body inflammation and symptoms that interfere with sleep, energy, moods and sex drive. Even skin rashes are directly related to gut dysbiosis.
Leaky Gut Symptoms
It can be hard to identify leaky gut syndrome because symptoms vary so much. Some people may feel perfectly healthy while others may constantly feel ill. In some cases, leaky gut syndrome gets worse and worse, but it is also possible for it to go away and then come back later. Some of the symptoms you may experience include:
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Skin problems
- Trouble concentrating
- Achy joints
The increased inflammation of leaky gut contributes to all sorts of other diseases. It is closely related to irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease, celiac disease, and other gastrointestinal disorders. Some evidence also links leaky gut to type 1 diabetes, since the increased inflammation can result in higher levels of damage to the pancreas. Autoimmune conditions, like food allergies, get worse with higher inflammation, so leaky gut may increase symptoms of these types of issues.
Causes of Leaky Gut
Since this condition is not fully understood yet, there is no definitive understanding of what causes it. However, studies into the condition have found that certain risk factors make it more likely for a person to develop one. Some of the causes may be lifestyle factors such as poor nutrition, a lack of dietary fiber, and higher levels of alcohol consumption. Nutritional problems, like high levels of sugar and low levels of vitamin A, vitamin D, and zinc, are especially likely to cause leaky gut.
Imbalances of the gastrointestinal flora and fauna can lead to problems as well. This means that yeast overgrowths and bacterial infections may cause leaky gut syndrome in some cases. It may also be caused by medical problems like an infection, diabetes, or an autoimmune disorder. Overusing nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, NSAIDs, may contribute as well. Furthermore, one’s mental state has been linked to the leaky gut syndrome also. High levels of chronic stress may cause the condition to develop in some people.
Is Leaky Gut Real?
There is a lot of debate about leaky gut syndrome in the medical community. The debate stems from the fact that the condition is difficult to diagnose, and symptoms vary so much from person to person. Some doctors have dismissed it as being a made-up disease. Much of the debate centers around whether or not leaky gut is a cause of disease or a symptom of disease. This misconception can make it harder to get treatments for it.
The reality is that there is quite a lot of evidence about the dangers of intestinal permeability. Several highly respected, unbiased studies have shown that it is possible for bacteria to pass through the intestinal wall and that higher levels of permeability lead to more diseases. It has been closely linked to many autoimmune disorders and gastrointestinal conditions. Research indicates that knowing how to treat leaky gut syndrome can greatly improve a patient’s overall well-being.
How to Get Leaky Gut Syndrome Testing
The first step to a diagnosis is often finding a doctor who is up to date on the latest medical research surrounding leaky gut syndrome. Since the symptoms are so varied and vague, a basic physical examination and medical history are not enough to diagnose the condition. Instead, you need to get leaky gut syndrome testing.
The least invasive way is a stool test that looks for bad bacteria, yeast, and the presence of good bacteria. Other markers for inflammation can also be tested. Pancreatic enzyme activity is also included.
Treatments for Leaky Gut Syndrome
Leaky gut treatment is all about improving your overall well-being. Unfortunately, there is no single medication that instantly provides leaky gut healing. Those with this condition need to try to cut back on all physical and mental stressors in their life. This includes smoking tobacco, drinking alcohol, and getting into stressful situations. Talking to a therapist, taking up meditation, and exercising regularly can all help lower levels of stress in the body. You also need to pay a lot of attention to your nutrition. A plant-based diet high in probiotics, vitamins, and minerals can be very helpful for improving the symptoms.
If your leaky gut is linked to any other conditions, then your leaky gut healing needs to include treatment for those conditions. Getting diabetes under control and finding ways of managing Crohn’s disease can reduce leaky gut problems. If you regularly take antibiotics or NSAIDs, talk to your doctor about ways to manage your health conditions without using these medications.
Does a Leaky Gut Diet Plan Work?
An important part of learning how to treat leaky gut syndrome is simply learning to change your diet. What you eat has a major impact on your overall gastrointestinal health. Even the best leaky gut treatment cannot heal poor eating habits.
First of all, you need to work toward improving gastrointestinal health and raising levels of probiotic bacteria in the gut. You can do this by eating probiotics like yogurt, kombucha, sauerkraut, and kimchi. Prebiotic fiber sources, like whole grains and fibrous vegetables, also help with leaky gut treatment because they provide nutrition for helpful gut bacteria.
A good leaky gut diet plan also recommends that you cut back on foods linked to gut inflammation. This means you need to reduce the consumption of sugar, refined carbohydrates, and artificial sweeteners. Animal-based foods can worsen leaky gut, so try to cut back on meat, cheese, dairy, and eggs. Instead, aim to get nutrition from eating a lot of beans, whole grains, vegetables, and fruits.
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