Leaky Gut Syndrome – What is It?

Man with stomach issue
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Leaky Gut Syndrome is an unproven condition that advocates say can result in rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, migraines, multiple sclerosis and autism. Even though there are no official statistics available on the prevalence of leaky gut syndrome among the US population, there are some physicians and healthcare specialists who suggest around 80% of the population is suffering from this condition to some extent.

One study reports that two-thirds of the human immune system is represented by the gastrointestinal tract and the associated lymphoid tissues, which means a healthy stomach and associated organs are necessary for an optimally working immune system.

What Leaky Gut actually is?

The gastrointestinal tract inherently has a high permeability to allow the absorbance of healthy molecules of vital nutrients into the bloodstream.  This activity plays an important role in maintaining the well-being of humans and animals. Cells covering the intestinal wall need to remain permeability so that a person can get all the healthy constituents of ingested food.

Things can go wrong when the cells in this area start to produce a regulatory protein called zonulin by the reaction of gluten. Zonulin affects the permeability of the digestive tract by cutting up tight junctions of the intestinal lining.

When junctions in the wall of the digestive tract get loose, you actually get a leaky gastrointestinal tract,  which allows even unhealthy and toxic substances, bacteria and undigested food particles to escape into the bloodstream and subsequently, travel throughout the body.

White blood cells mark all these leaked molecules and substances as foreign bodies and prompt an immune response. Symptoms of leaky gut syndrome are basically the consequences of those immune system reactions.

Why One Gets Leaky Gut Syndrome?

As mentioned earlier, gluten is the leading cause of the leaky gut syndrome. Most people face complications due to the excessive consumption of gluten-rich foods. The use of refined sugar and alcoholism also leads to this condition.

Other than excessive gluten consumption and consequent zonulin reaction, overgrowth of intestinal parasites, fungus and bacteria also lose the junction of the gastrointestinal tract. This abnormal production of microorganisms in the gut is prompted by toxins coming from different substances.

Antibiotics, steroids, other medications and environmental pollutants such as pesticides, mercury, arsenic, etc., are also responsible for the growth of these dangerous microorganisms. Aging and higher levels of stress also catalyze the problem in the stomach and associated organs.

Identifying Leaky Gut

The majority of the population suffering from the problem of leaky guts are not even aware that they are facing a digestive health issue. Therefore it is necessary to know the signs and symptoms of a leaky gut syndrome so you can have it addressed in time.

  • Gas, irritable bowel syndrome, food allergies and bloating are the most common symptoms of the leaky gut syndrome.
  • Due to increased activity of the immune system, people suffering from leaky syndrome might acquire more seasonal allergies.
  • Hormonal imbalance in the form of premenstrual syndrome and polycystic ovary syndrome also affects women having the leaky gut syndrome.
  • Leaky gut also leads to the development of autoimmune diseases.
  • Mood disorder and mental ailments such as anxiety, depression and hyperactivity can also be the unwanted consequences of leaky gut syndrome.

Dealing With Leaky Gut

After the diagnosis of leaky gut, one must try to address the problem with the help of healthy healing diets and other supplements. The goal of doing this is to reinstate the gut junctions of the intestinal wall into their original shape and to restore the balance of healthy bacteria in the gut.

Raw Dairy Products

Raw cheese, unprocessed milk and yogurt contain healthy bacteria and short-chain fatty acids which help in restoring the original shape of the gut lining.

Bone Broth

To repair the damaged cell wall of the digestive tract, consuming bone broth is considered beneficial because it contains amino acids and collagen essential for the repair works of the gut.

Fermented Vegetables

Fermented soybeans, cabbage and a variety of pickles are also helpful in treating irritable bowel syndrome. They help in maintaining the acidic environment of the gut at healthy levels, which facilitates the growth of probiotics.


Supplements in the form of digestive enzymes and probiotics also help in the speedy recovery, but it is advisable to consult your physician before administering any of these supplements.

To prevent the onset of leaky gut syndrome, a healthy diet and healthy environmental conditions are the key. It is also important to note leaky gut syndrome doesn’t only affect the digestive system, a whole lot of health complications can be acquired from it.

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