Leaky gut is believed to be a condition in which the intestines are permeable, or hyper-permeable, and allow harmful or damaging substances to leak into the bloodstream through the lining of the intestines.
Symptoms of Leaky Gut
Signs of leaky gut include increased symptoms from allergies, food sensitivities (especially to gluten and dairy), irritable bowel disease (IBS) and/or Crohn’s disease, autoimmune diseases such as Rheumatoid arthritis (RA), inflammation and skin conditions (eczema or psoriasis).
Gut Microbes and Autoimmune Diseases
Autoimmune diseases have been shown to be the result of three factors: genetics, environmental factors (smoking, alcohol consumption) and gut microbes. Gut microbes are affected by the health of the gastrointestinal tract, the use of pharmaceuticals including antacids, antibiotics, non-steroid anti-inflammatories, smoking and alcohol consumption. The composition of gut microbes can be changed by the use of antibiotics. Studies have shown that antibiotic use reduce bacteroides and bifidobacterium (“healthy bacteria”) and lead to the growth of campylobacter, streptococcus, leuconostoc, and candida albicans (“bad bacteria”) in the gut. This imbalance in the gut results in the reduction of the body’s immunity (production of T-cells) and the increased incident of autoimmune diseases.
A healthy diet low in chemicals and processed foods, gluten (an irritating protein found in wheat), alcohol and dairy – and rich in plant-based nutrients along with probiotics can often reverse the symptoms of leaky gut. Super Probiotics and Ultra Probiotic Formula are excellent sources of the healthy microbes the gut needs to restore balance and immunity. These high-potency formulas are designed to withstand the acid in the stomach and restore normal levels of healthy bacteria. Gluten Support and Ultra Dairy Aid offer enzymes and herbs to aid in the digestion of gluten, wheat, other grains, starches and carbohydrates and dairy. If you think you are suffering from leaky gut syndrome, be sure your gastroenterologist specializes in nutrition and can address the symptoms related to leaky gut.
A healthy diet supports a healthy gut, which in turn supports a healthy immune system and offers protection from many autoimmune and inflammatory diseases and conditions.