National Nutrition - quality Health supplements, knowledgeable service. Serving our customers and friends for over 25 years.
Vitamix
ssl security Facebook
Twitter
 Product Quick Search:
Search
Top Categories

2 For Deals
30 Top Sellers
A-Z All Brands
A-Z All Products
Acidophilus/Probiotics
Amino Acids
Alternative Sweeteners
Anti-Aging Nutrients
Antioxidants
Aromatherapy
Beta Carotene
Books
BOGO Deals
BONUS Bottles
Cal-Mag
Clearance
COQ10
Dental & Mouth Care
Detox Supplements
Dr. Oz
Enzymes/Digestive
Essential Fats
Fiber
Fruit Supplements
Gift Packs
Ginkgo
Glucosamine
Greens
Heart Supplements
Herbs
Homeopathics
Joint Supplements
Men’s Health
Minerals
Multivitamins
New For October
New Last Month
Pet Supplements
Protein
Protein & Energy Bars
pH Balance
Sleep/Insomnia
Skin Care
Sports Nutrition
Stress
Teas
Vitamin A
Vitamin B
Vitamin C
Vitamin D
Vitamin E
Vitamin K
Weight Loss
Women’s Health

More Categories

…View all
3-6-9 Omega Oils
5HTP
Acai Berry
Adrenal Support
AlgaeCal
Alpha Lipoic Acid
Allergy Supplements
Astaxanthin
B-12 Methylcobalamin
Bach Flower Remedies
Bee Supplements
Bilberry
Bioflavonoids
Blood Sugar Support
Bone Health
Brain / Memory
Candida
Carnitine
Cell Salts
Chia Seed
Chromium
Collagen
Colloidal Silver
Coconut Oil
Colon Cleansing
Colostrum
Cold & Flu
Cortisol Reducers
Cranberry
Cranberry
Curcumin
Ear & Hearing Health
Echinacea
Eye Health
Estrogen Detox
Feminine Hygiene
Fibromyalgia
Flax Oil
Food Supplements
Garlic
Ginseng
Glutamine
Gluten Intolerance
Goji
Grape Seed Extract
Green Coffee Bean
Green Tea
Hair & Skin Health
HGH
High Blood Pressure
High Cholesterol
Holy Basil
Home Testing Kits
Homocysteine Fighters
Hormone Support
Immune Support
Inositol
Iodine
Kids’ Health
Konjac Root
Krill Oil
Leaky Gut
Liver Cleansing
Lung & Respiratory
Lutein
Lycopene
Magnesium Citrate
Manuka Honey
Melatonin
Menopause
Milk Thistle
Mood Support
MSM
Mushroom Extracts
Nattokinase
Natural Body Care
Natural Egg Membrane
Omega-3 Fish Oil
Oregano Oil
Pain Relief
Parasite Cleanse
PGX
PMS Supplements
Primrose Oil
Prostate Supplements
Protein Bars
Quit Smoking
R+ Alpha Lipoic
Raspberry Ketones
Raw Food Supplements
Raw Wholefood Multis
Resveratrol
Sam-E
Salmon Oil
Seabuckthorn
Selenium
Serrapeptase
Serotonin Support
Sex Supplements
Shark Cartilage
Silica
Slim Styles
Spirulina
Stevia
Strontium
Thyroid Health
Trace Minerals
Ubiquinol CoQ10
Whey Protein
Yacon Syrup
Zinc

Home > Research Department  > Health Concerns Articles > Leaky Gut
    Health Concerns Articles  
LEAKY GUT
Articles by a Naturopathic Doctor ( N.D.)

LEAKY GUT

Exercises that reduce stress like yoga and meditation can be an effective solution against Leaky Gut
A nasty-sounding problem that can undermine your health without you even knowing ...

The lining of our intestinal tract is a lot like the skin on the outside of our bodies. Although our digestive tract runs through the inside of our body, it is a closed tube and everything on the inside is actually "outside" our body. It is the lining of our digestive tract (the endothelium) that protects us from everything inside our gut. The entire endothelium is a mucous membrane (much like the inside of the mouth), which acts as a filter that only allows fully digested nutrients to pass through to our bloodstream. Each cell is tightly stitched to the one next to it by a number of attachments called "tight junctions". This lining keeps us safe from bacteria, yeast, toxins, waste products and undigested food particles that are not yet ready to be absorbed. When this lining is compromised, these foreign particles can cross the tight junctions and enter directly into the bloodstream and create problems with the immune system.

Starting the Leak
There are a number of different things that can allow for leaking of the gut wall. Often the initial insult will come from a toxic exposure or from an infection in the gut. Toxic exposure can be accidental, like water or work-related exposure, or can be due to drugs that we ingest, like medications or alcohol. Infection can be viral, bacterial, or a Candida (yeast) infection, and it may appear as gastroenteritis (stomach flu / diarrhea) or have no symptoms at all. In each case, the resulting inflammation causes a breakdown of the proper structure of the gut lining, which can allow for the passage of debris, such as: waste, toxins, and food particles across the tight junction.

Triggering Inflammation
Once the debris is allowed to cross the tight junctions, it can be exposed to the incredible number of immune cells that lay hidden just below the lining of our gut. In fact, the vast majority, an estimated 70-80% of our immune system exists in this gut-associated lymphatic tissue (GALT). When our immune cells are exposed to foreign substances they respond as nature intended and mount an immune response. This response creates an inflammatory cascade that can begin to damage the endothelium even more, and create more leaks. Stress plays a very important role at this step in the inflammatory pathway. Cortisol is our major long-term stress hormone, and its presence alters the normal immune response throughout the body. Thus, when we are stressed, our immune response is different than when we are relaxed and happy.

What you can do to help:

- AVOID REFINED SUGAR, YEAST & COFFEE
- BENEFIT FROM YOGA & MEDITATION

DID YOU KNOW?
(LEAKY GUT FACTS)

- SYMPTOMS INCLUDE FATIGUE, CONSTIPATION AND GAS
- SYMPTOMS CAN WORSEN UNDER STRESSFUL SITUATIONS

Continuing the Cycle
The more the body is exposed to the triggering substance, the greater the mounted immune response, and the greater the damage to the gut lining. This is ultimately how food sensitivities become an escalating problem, and why removing the triggering food can reduce the symptoms and stop the inflammatory chain. Unfortunately, on the other hand, if the problem is caused by: toxins, yeast or bacteria that remain in the gut or that we are repeatedly exposed to, the inflammatory cycle will continue in an upward spiral.
 

Inflammation, Autoimmunity and Allergies
The resulting inflammatory cycle is how leaky gut can create inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, allergies, asthma, and even autoimmune conditions like IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease). Studies have also shown an association between leaky gut and several conditions such as: type I ("jeuvenile onset") diabetes, lupus, MS (Multiple Sclerosis), and even autism.

Signs and Symptoms

Because the immune effects of leaky gut can enter the bloodstream and then travel anywhere in the body, there are a number of different signs and symptoms associated with this condition. Some examples include: fatigue, diarrhea, constipation, bloating, gas, reduced immunity, skin rashes, eczema, anxiety, depression, irritability and dark circles under the eyes. Because food may enter the blood before it is fully digested, it is not properly metabolized and can result in a number of nutrient deficiencies. This is called malabsorption, and can result in any number of nutritional deficiencies over time. Signs of this can appear over time as dry skin, fatigue, as well as brittle hair and nails.

Distinction from Candidiasis
Often people will attribute leaky gut symptoms to candidiasis (a yeast overgrowth in the gut), and although it is a common cause of leaky gut, treating candida alone will not fully resolve the symptoms, and can often make it worse. Anti-candida treatments can often be harsh and further damage the gut, it is important to heal any damage after clearing the cause of the inflammation.

Fixing the Root of the Problem
Curing leaky gut ends up being a two-step process. First, it is important to remove the offending agent causing the inflammation and damage in the gut. Individuals who suffer from Leaky gut may need to follow certain dietary restrictions in order to alleviate symptoms. Introducing a variety of fruits, vegetables and whole grains, as well as incorporating lean protein sources into the diet, while avoiding food sensitivities will help to alleviate symptoms.

In the case of bacteria or Candida antimicrobial herbs and supplements can be used to help remove them, for more information, please see our article on candida here. If the problem is caused by a food sensitivity, the offending food(s) must be removed from the diet for at least a year and possibly permanently to prevent further inflammation. External sources of toxins should also be examined and removed to stop the ongoing inflammatory immune response. While we are removing the cause of the problem, we can help to reduce the inflammation using supplements.

Reducing gut inflammation
There are a number of supplements that can reduce gut inflammation, but some of the best are:

Fish Oil
This oil is rich in omega 3 fatty acids, and has been shown to reduce inflammation, improve mood, thin the blood, and reduce blood pressure. For more information on fish oil, please click here.

Boswellia
This herb is renowned for its ability to reduce systemic inflammation in the body. Although it has been most thoroughly researched for the treatment of arthritis, its use can be expanded to other inflammatory conditions. For more information on Boswellia, please click here.

Curcumin
Another herb that has been established for its anti-inflammatory properties, curcumin (tumeric) can be added to your cooking or supplemented directly as a great way to reduce any inflammation in your gut. For more information on curcumin, please click here.

Healing the Gut
Once the source of the inflammation is removed, the immune system is no longer stimulated, and the gastrointestinal lining has a chance to heal. It will, of course, heal naturally over time, but we can easily help to speed up the process. Restricting alcohol and caffeine, which are both irritating to the mucosal membrane of the gut, also helps to reduce the symptoms of leaky gut. Reducing stress levels with breathing exercises, and lifestyle changes can help to promote healthy digestion and reduce cortisol levels to allow restoration of normal immune function. For more information on stress reduction, please click here.

Supplements for Healing
Of course, there are a number of supplements that can help to reduce inflammation and speed the healing of the gut lining. Once the tight junctions are repaired, the symptoms of leaky gut will resolve.

L-Glutamine
This amino acid can be considered the single most important supplement for restoring the integrity of the gut lining. It is a major food source for the enterocytes, and providing food allows them to replicate and heal regions of damage. For more information on glutamine, please click here.

DGL (Deglycyrrhizinated Licorice)
Licorice is a soothing and healing herb that can soothe the intestinal lining directly and also acts to regulate the immune system and help calm any ongoing inflammation. For more information on DGL, please click here.

Demulcents
This class of herbs coat and protect the intestinal lining from any further damage. By protecting the lining, they give the enterocytes time to heal. Some examples are marshmallow, and slippery elm. For more information on marshmallow, please click here. For more information on slippery elm, please click here.

The following list of supplements can be used for Leaky Gut.  Adult doses are given.  (CLICK SUPPLEMENT NAME FOR PRODUCTS).

SUPPLEMENT DOSAGE THERAPEUTIC EFFECT
PROBIOTICS Take as directed. 1-3 capsules/day. Promote normal intestinal flora, supports immune function, helps protect against harmful bacteria, and yeast.
GLUTAMINE 2000-5000 mg per day in divided doses Helps repair damage to the intestinal lining by feeding the enterocytes.
DGL(DEGLYCERHYZINATED LICORICE) Take as directed. Helps to reduce the irritation to the intestinal mucosa and support a normal immune response.
ESSENTIAL FATTY ACIDS (EFA'S) Take as directed. 2000 - 3000 mg per day is generally recommended Reduces inflammation, helps rebuild the intestinal wall and may compensate for decrease in fat metabolism.
BERBERINE Take as directed. Studies show that Berberine may repair tight junction damage cause by inflammation and restore the barrier function.
MULTI-VITAMIN AND MINERAL SUPPLEMENTS Take as directed. May be necessary to compensate for nutritional deficiencies.
Digestive enzymes Take as directed. Replaces missing enzymes. Ensures complete digestion of all foods especially proteins.
Slippery Elm Take as needed. Protects and soothes the lining of the intestinal tract.
CURCUMIN 900mg daily (standardized to 95% curcuminoids). Anti-inflammatory.
BOSWELLIA 600 – 1200mg per day (standardized to 65%boswellic acid). Helps to reduce pain, swelling, and inflammation in intestinal conditions.
For informational purposes only.  Please consult your health care practitioner before taking natural health care products. Click here for full disclaimer.


All articles copyright National Nutrition 2001 - 2014.  For educational purposes only.  Please note that while National Nutrition supports your right to use natural health care products for any therapeutic purpose that you see fit, that the information on this website should not be considered as a claim or as a substitute for medical advice.

My Account
Checkout
Shopping Cart
View Cart  Shrink
No Items
Total: $0.00
One Day Sale!

Vitamin D-1000iu
180 softgels

Reg: $11.99
Sale: $7.99
 


VIT. C 1000mg  Timed Release -
180 tabs

Reg: $15.98
Sale: $7.99
 

Oregano Oil
93% extract

Reg: $14.99
Sale: $9.99
 



Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner