The intestine is the gateway to health. If your gut is healthy, chances are you are in good health. However, there is a condition called leaky gut that can lead to a number of health problems.
What is a leaky gut?
The gut is naturally permeable to very small molecules in order to absorb these vital nutrients. In fact, the regulation of intestinal permeability is one of the basic functions of the cells that line the intestinal wall. In sensitive people, gluten can cause cells in the intestine to release zonulin, a protein that can break down tight junctions in the intestinal lining.
Other factors - such as infections, toxins, stress, and age - can also cause these tight junctions to break. Once these tight junctions are broken, you have a leaky gut. When your gut is leaky, things like toxins, microbes, undigested food particles, and much more, escape from your intestines and travel throughout your body via the bloodstream. Your immune system marks these "foreign invaders" as pathogens and attacks them. The immune response to these invaders can appear in the form of any of the nine signs that you have a leaky gut, listed below.
What Causes Leaky Gut?
The main culprits are food, infections, and toxins. Gluten is the number one cause of leaky gut. Other inflammatory foods such as dairy or toxic foods, such as sugar and excess alcohol, are suspected as well. The most common infectious causes are candida overgrowth, intestinal parasites, and intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SBI).
Toxins come in the form of drugs, including NSAIDs, such as Motrin and Advil, steroids, antibiotics, and acid-reducing drugs. They can also come in the form of environmental toxins like mercury, pesticides, and BPA from plastics. Stress and age also contribute to a leaky gut. If you suffer from any of the following conditions, you most likely have a leaky gut.
9 signs you have a leaky gut
1. Digestive problems such as gas, bloating, diarrhea, or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
2. Seasonal allergies or asthma.
3. Hormonal imbalances, such as PMS or PCOS.
4. The diagnosis of an autoimmune disease such as rheumatoid arthritis, Hashimoto's thyroiditis, lupus, psoriasis, or celiac disease.
5. The diagnosis of chronic fatigue or fibromyalgia.
6. Mood and mind problems, such as depression, anxiety, ADD or ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder).
7. Skin problems such as acne, rosacea, or eczema.
8. Candida overgrowth diagnosis.
9. Food allergies or food intolerances.
How do you heal a leaky gut?
In the practice of curing a gut, one has to follow a complete elimination diet, which eliminates toxic and inflammatory foods for a certain period of time. Also, follow a program to heal the gut that can consist of four steps:
1. Put off
Take away the evil. The goal is to get rid of things that negatively affect the environment of the gastrointestinal tract, such as inflammatory and toxic foods and intestinal infections.
Put the good. Add back the essential ingredients for proper digestion and absorption, such as digestive enzymes, hydrochloric acid, and bile acids.
Restoring beneficial bacteria is vitally important to reestablishing a healthy balance of good bacteria.
It is essential to provide the necessary nutrients to help the intestine repair itself. One of my favorites is L-glutamine supplements, an amino acid that helps rejuvenate the lining of the intestinal wall. If you still have symptoms after following the recommendations above, find a functional medicine doctor in your area to work with you and to order a comprehensive stool exam.
It might make sense that exercising harder would have a better effect on lowering blood sugar therefore but this is not always the case as strenuous exercise can produce a stress response which causes the body to raise blood glucose levels. This response does tend to vary from person.