01 Apr What is Leaky Gut?
Sounds odd doesn’t it? Makes you picture a gut with holes through it. Well it kind of is, but on a much smaller scale.
Leaky gut is incredibly common in those that have an autoimmune condition. It is not something your Doc is likely to diagnose you with. However it is getting more recognized. Often the root cause is someones digestive issues.
Leaky gut affects the lining of your intestines. When you have damaged lining to your intestinal tract it makes it much harder for nutrients to be absorbed into the blood stream. Your digestive tract is supposed to have a healthy layer of tight junctions which contain microvilli (think of little octopus tentacles) all around the edge of your intestinal tract. It is also supposed to have a healthy mucus lining. Often these two things get damaged and the tight junctions become not so tight and the microvilli “tenticles” get blunt.
So the protective layer inside the digestive system is no longer protecting the body from the food you eat. Often what happens with this is you just become incredibly sensitive to so many things. Your body just can’t handle foods it normally would have been able to. This is me to a tee.
Initial symptoms could be bloating, gas, inflammation, skin flair ups, allergies, then as the food moves through the digestive system the bacteria, yeast, toxins, undigested proteins and fats leak out of the gut and into the blood stream. If the wrong food enters you can feel like rubbish for days afterwards while the body deals with it all. This is your bodies autoimmune reaction to the foreign invaders.
Your liver has to work over time to get rid of the constant flow of invaders from toxins, yeast, undigested food and pathogens. All this stress affects the way your body functions, so not only will you be placing stress on your digestive system but your adrenals also.
Remember your body sees stress as stress. So it can be external or internal. This inflammation then leads to adrenal fatigue and other related issues. For me this was the case. It didn’t matter what I was eating it just didn’t seem to work until I took the time to repair my gut.
This is why dogs can eat anything and not get sick. They have a mucus lining in their stomachs. Those that have a leaky gut or damaged digestive system have damage to that mucus lining and the tight junctions and microvilli. Our intestine is our bodies first defense for our immune system so with this damage your body can’t properly digest food and absorb nutrients. The food isn’t the problem it’s the damage to the intestinal lining that is.
How does one get Leaky gut?
There are a number of things that could cause it to happen, the obvious being eating the wrong foods which have damaged the lining of your intestines. A gut infection, exposure to chemicals, too much of the wrong type of foods, pain killers, antibiotics, a diet high in processed foods, sugars, grains, gluten exposure. Any number of things can inflame your gut. If you continue to expose it to stress you can damage the integrity of your gut, which results in leaky gut.
How do you fix leaky gut?
This is where you need to be consuming a diet that brings down inflammation, a diet that is anti inflammatory and a diet that contains the building blocks to repair the lining of your intestine. This is where bone broths and home made gelatin jellys come in alongside well cooked vegetables, meat and good quality fats, probiotics, good quality cod liver oil, sleep, correct exercise and patience. It can take up to two years to reverse the damage, so time and patience is the key.
Want to learn more about leaky gut? Check out my next post How To Heal Leaky Gut.
Inside the online gym I have got all the resources to help you improve digestive health and fine tune your diet so that it is right for you. From an autoimmune plan to help heal leaky gut, through to detailed questionnaires to help you discover your metabolic type. Learn more about the online gym here