Leaky gut syndrome also known as intestinal permeability can be caused by imbalances in gut flora or poor digestion and can contribute to food allergy or intolerance.
A normal healthy gut lining allows certain molecules to pass across into the bloodstream such as vitamins, minerals and digested foods. It also acts as a barrier to prevent entry of larger damaging molecules, foreign particles and bacteria. When there is damage to the intestinal lining it can open up slightly and this allows larger particles, such as undigested or partially digested foods and bacteria, to enter into the bloodstream. The immune system is not used to these particles and sees them as foreign and produces anti-bodies against them. This leads to inflammation, irritation and an allergic like reaction.
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The presence of leaky gut can be confirmed via A Simple Leaky Gut Urine Test.
Symptoms often experienced include:
- Abdominal pain
- Mood swings
- Skin problems
- Joint pains
- Poor memory
- Recurrent infections due to poor immunity.
Candida infection – A candida infection occurs when there is an overgrowth of the pathogenic yeast Candida Albicans in the gut. This can be caused by poor dietary habits, compromised levels of friendly bacteria in the gut and poor immunity to name just a few. Common symptoms are those mentioned above as well as craving sweet foods and difficulty losing weight. The problem with Candida is that it secures itself to the gut by rooting itself through the gut wall. This breach of the gut lining is what then leads to the development of leaky gut. A Candida infection can be identified via A Candida Saliva Test. Specialist dietary advice and supplements are then required to eliminate the Candida and restore healthy gut function.
Intestinal parasites – Intestinal parasite can also damage the gut lining when they latch onto it to secure themselves in the digestive system. These little pests are commonly picked up on holiday and can be detected by the Traveller’s Tummy Test. Natural supplements and herbs could then be used to gently remove the unwanted guests, as well as repairing the damage they have done.
Coeliac Disease – Coeliac Disease is an allergy to the protein gluten found in wheat, barley, rye and oats. In people with Celiac disease the presence of gluten in the digestive system causes an immune response that destroys the gut lining. Symptoms vary widely from none at all to severe digestive discomfort, diarrhea, weight loss and weakness. Celiac disease can be confirmed via A Simple Coeliac Disease Blood Test. Smart Nutrition could then help you to repair you gut lining and adjust to living on a gluten free diet.
Lactose intolerance – Lactose intolerance is another immune response in the gut that can lead to increased intestinal permeability. Please call for more details about this test.
Insufficient digestive enzymes and/or stomach acid – If food is not properly digested when it reaches the delicate absorption part of the gut then it can easily damage the gut lining. A Comprehensive Digestive Stool Analysis can be used to determine the efficiency of the digestive process. Smart Nutrition could then use these results and could write a protocol for you that is designed to improve you digestion and help to repair the damage to the gut.
Chronic stress – Stress suppresses the immune system and cause inflammation. A healthy immune system can easily block out typical pathogens, but a weak one may be overrun. When the immune system is overactive for an extended period of time, leaky gut can develop. In addition, the first organ system to lose its blood supply, during a stress reaction, is the intestinal tract. If you have been storing up stress for a long time, your intestinal tract will be chronically starved for blood and the lining will not function properly. This makes your gut much more susceptible to an invasion by disease-causing organisms such as Candida and parasites which then cause further permeability problems. If you think stress may be a contributing factor in your condition An Adrenal Stress Test can help pinpoint precise imbalances which could then then be targeted with the help of Smart Nutrition.
Frequent use of alcohol, painkillers (especially aspirin), steroids or the contraceptive pill – all these factors can increase the permeability of the intestines and lead to the symptoms mentioned above. If you regularly use alcohol or pharmaceutical and suffer from any of the above symptoms A Leaky Gut Test will give you a useful indication of the extent of any effects. These could then be addressed with the help of Smart Nutrition who will also be able to help you deal with any other underlying problems that may be contributing to your need to use these substances.
Chemotherapy – Chemotherapy not only kills cancer cells it also damages our own body cells particularly those in the gut. Increased intestinal permeability is therefore one of the many side effects of chemotherapy. If you are currently recuperating from treatment Smart Nutrition could design specialist protocols to support you through your recovery.