Leaky Gut: How To Fix It & Why It’s a Top Priority

Leaky gut is a root cause for many health conditions. What’s more, it is often silent with no obvious symptoms.

“I tried a few different natural doctors to help me with my chronic UTIs and repetitive sinus infections, but it was only when I met Nick here in the UK that I really turned a corner and got change. He tested me and picked up leaky gut – he actually said the leaky gut was positioned next to my bladder, which was very precise. So we worked on leaky gut and also addressing my body as a whole, and quite quickly things started to change. I’m very grateful for all his help.” – Jo

Migraines, sinusitis, food intolerances, auto-immune problems, UTIs, anxiety, depression?

A good place to look is the gut. Leaky gut, also known as increased intestinal permeability has been linked to many health problems. What’s more, it’s common here in the UK. Thankfully you can fix it by learning how to heal, and start to resolve these problems with some simple steps.

Reabsorption of toxins

Your digestive system has a vital function within your body. It is the barrier that keeps nutrients in and toxins/pathogens out. Keeping the gut lining healthy is important, and this is where healthy gut bacteria play their role.

If the gut microbe is unhealthy, leaky gut can start to develop. What this really means is that toxins can leak back through the lining of the gut and into the bloodstream.

Disruption of gut flora

There are about 100 trillion bacteria (good and bad) in our gut, which affect our entire body, from how we feel mentally and emotionally, to metabolism and sleep quality. They can be knocked out of kilter with poor diet, antibiotics, exposure to mycotoxins, stress and more.

When this happens, you can start to feel really quite unwell, with a whole host of symptoms from migraines, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, autoimmune disease, and even more serious issues.

Signs and symptoms of Leaky Gut

Leaky gut presents itself in many ways, but common symptoms include:

Leaky gut has also been linked with coeliac disease, multiple sclerosis and even autism, among other conditions.

Quick, uninvasive testing

Iridology is a test I carry out at my practice in London or Suffolk, and this is an excellent way of detecting leaky gut and for finding out which parts of the body it could be affecting. Other functional tests can also be used to find out specific underlying causes of leaky gut, such as a mycotoxin urine test.

Repairing Leaky Gut with natural medicine

There is a lot you can do with diet to support your gut lining, and your gut health Naturopath can guide you through this.

Diet is by far the most important factor in making your gut work. By keeping your gut microbiota in healthy balance, you can boost your immune system, support your digestion, remove environmental toxins from your body, and prevent leaky gut.

1) Include anti-inflammatory foods that are nutrient dense

To help get a handle on chronic inflammation, dietary changes can make a big difference.

  • This includes eliminating or greatly reducing added-sugar and alcohol from your diet. Candida and yeast thrive on sugar, and yeast overgrowth is one of the things that causes problems with the gut lining.
  • Stick with a varied diet of whole and unprocessed foods. This will bring a diversity of good bacteria into your gut to support the lining and gut integrity. It is worth noting that gut bacteria are related to the bacteria found in the soil – so my recommendation is to shop at your local market if you can, rather than your supermarket, so that foods are fresher and more in their natural state.
  • There are some foods that contribute to leaky gut. Wheat and gluten – which includes breads, pizza, pastries, pasta, some cereals, crackers, couscous, and gluten products, from cakes and muffins to biscuits and cookies. Following a gluten free diet is more manageable these days than in was previously, with many substitutes available. Processed meats – from  deli meats to bacon and sausages. Junk food – from crisps, sugary cereals and confectionery, etc. Pasteurized dairy – including milk, cheese, cream, ice cream. Refined oils – all refined oils, often vegetable oils, including canola, sunflower and rapeseed.  Artificial sweeteners: Aspartame, sucralose and saccharin – try stevia as a replacement. Drinks – avoid alcohol, fizzy drinks and other sugary drinks.
  • Include prebiotic foods that encourage good bacteria in the gut: examples are sweet potato, carrots, asparagus.
  • Include probiotic foods: these include sauerkraut, yogurt, kefir, pickles. In fact fermented food like raw sauerkraut can often be a better source of probiotics than supplements found in health food stores.
  • Find out if you have a food allergy or allergies. This can be done with Kinesiology testing or other forms of testing. Then I recommend keeping away from these foods as they will contribute to irritation in the gut.
  • Bone broth is a a great way to get vital amino acids which help with tissue repair and gut healing and healthy digestion.

2) Supplement to support the gut

  • Prebiotics: Prebiotics feed intestinal bacteria that produce short-chain fatty acids, which are important for the mucosal cells that create a healthy gut lining.
  • Probiotics: If you don’t want to add fermented food to your daily diet, you can supplement with a good quality probiotic from your local health food store.
  • Digestive enzymes: These are often compromised when leaky gut is present. Things like grains and legumes can be problematic and you can try avoiding these and at the same time add a good quality digestive supplement to your diet can help improve digestion and the absorption of nutrients and vitamins.
  • L-glutamine: An anti-inflammatory amino acid that is a priority when fixing and health leaky gut. It helps to cover cell walls and eliminate unwanted pests.

3) Tackle stress levels

The body works in mysterious ways sometimes, and you might be surprised to hear that studies have shown that stress affects the gut-brain axis, the pathway between your brain and your gut.

4) Too much sugar and a history of medications

Clearing  out of your body a history of too much sugar or medications, such as antibiotics, contraceptive pill, anti-inflammatories is important too. This is because these drugs can continue to cause damage in the cells of your digestive system, despite you having stopped them. Homeopathy is excellent at clearing out the damage that such things as antibiotics and sugar can cause.

Taking care of your gut is a great way to feeling better in so many ways, from vitality and energy, depression and anxiety to pain and memory problems.

Get in touch if you would like to get tested, or have any questions.