For a long time, the medical community neither recognized nor understood the leaky gut syndrome. It was considered to be a naturopath’s domain, and that was that. However, recent studies are pointing to the link between stress, increased gut permeability, and resultant damage to the human body.1
In this context, what does leaky gut mean to us and how do we treat it naturally, especially at a time when it isn’t yet a medically diagnosed condition?
Tips To Remedy The Leaky Gut Syndrome
1. Identify The Symptoms Correctly
There is now reason to believe that major depressive disorder (MDD) can be triggered due to an inflammatory response to gram negative bacteria present in the intestines.2 This goes to show that some of the most complex manifestations can have a single underlying reason. If you experience a “foggy brain,” an increase in allergy incidence due to unexplained triggers, and bloating and a digestive system that just feels “wrong,” you may have a leaky gut. Identifying these symptoms as markers of the same illness is the very first step toward natural healing.
2. Go For Probiotics
The intestinal flora, or the bacteria that live in our gut, have a significant role to play in how we process food. They are also extremely sensitive to changes in our stomach pH, or the introduction of new toxins. By consuming more fermented foods and products rich in probiotic bacteria, we give the flora a chance to retain their natural order. Some researchers suggest that it is best to opt for raw, organic produce to avoid introducing further toxins into the gut.3
3. Eat Digestible Protein
One theory about the leaky gut syndrome suggests that poorly digested protein can pass through more permeable intestines and into the brain through blood. These proteins then cause the brain-related symptoms associated with the syndrome.4 As a natural extension to this theory, consuming more easily digestible protein such as fully cooked grains and sprouted lentils can help the body digest proteins more easily, leading to a reduced toxic wastage build-up that seeps through the gut.
4. Include More L-Glutamine In The Diet
There could be a single magical cure to the leaky gut after all! L-glutamine is one of the several essential amino acids that we all need. It is present abundantly in seafood and also in beans, legumes, foods from the cabbage family, and miso paste. As the name suggests, L-glutamine can help “glue” the enlarged pores together in the gut and heal the intestines faster. As a result, the number and nature of contents leaking through is significantly reduced.5
5. Undertake Fasting
It doesn’t have to be a rigorous fast but one just enough to give the digestive system time to heal itself. You can opt for liquids such as vegetable juices and broths to help you stay hydrated and give you the required nutrients. Fasting for at least 16 hours is recommended.
Leaky gut sounds like a complex disorder because of its symptoms. Over time, leaky gut can also lead to worsened autoimmune conditions. However, by following these few steps and a healthy diet pattern, you can heal your gut naturally.
|↑1||Bjarnason, Ingvar, Kevin Ward, and TimothyJ Peters. “The leaky gut of alcoholism: possible route of entry for toxic compounds.” The Lancet 323, no. 8370 (1984): 179-182.|
|↑2||Mass, Michael, Marta Kubera, and Jean-Claude Leunis. “The gut-brain barrier in major depression: intestinal mucosal dysfunction with an increased translocation of LPS from gram negative enterobacteria (leaky gut) plays a role in the inflammatory pathophysiology of depression.” Neuroendocrinology Letters 29, no. 1 (2008): 117-124.|
|↑3||Shea, Cathy. “Leaky Gut Syndrome.”|
|↑4||Johnson, Kimberly. “Leaky Gut Syndrome.” In Encyclopedia of Autism Spectrum Disorders, pp. 1706-1712. Springer New York, 2013.|
|↑5||Jenkins, Bonnie. “Leaky Gut Syndrome.”|