In our recent blogs, we’ve discussed how leaky gut occurs and nutrition that can either help or hinder this condition.
In this /blogs/natural-athlete-solutions, we’ll cover how you can find out if you truly have leaky gut, and how to begin treatment in order to resolve any other pesky systemic symptoms like rashes, headaches, brain fog, fatigue, asthma and joint pain, to name a few.
How Is Leaky Gut Diagnosed?
There isn’t any direct way to diagnose leaky gut syndrome. Instead, diagnosing leaky gut is chiefly based on a person’s history and clinical symptoms. When all of these point to leaky gut, we can then use an Intestinal Permeability Test to confirm our suspicions.
The test measures how two different types on non-digestible sugars (lactulose and mannitol) are able to pass through the intestinal barrier.
Lactulose is a relatively large molecule and isn’t supposed to be absorbed across the intestine – it’s used as a marker for leaky gut. Mannitol is a small molecule and passes through the intestinal lining easily.
In the test, a measured amount of both sugars is swallowed and then the person’s urine is collected over the next several hours where it will then be analyzed for lactulose and mannitol content.
An explanation based on the ratios of how different amounts of the sugars show up in the urine can confirm or deny the presence of leaky gut, and the extent of the condition.
Another test that can be very helpful is a Food Sensitivity test. This will tell us which foods a person is sensitive too – sensitivity is different than allergy, by the way. This isn’t a skin prick test but rather a simple blood test that looks for an immune reaction against foods the body is sensitized to.
Food sensitivities are thought to be an end-result of leaky gut. If a person’s gut is “leaky” to certain food proteins, they may become sensitive to those foods and develop certain symptoms at some point after those foods are eaten.
How To Fix Leaky Gut
Resolution of this condition takes time and diligence. A person needs to maintain a strict, healthy diet (avoiding food sensitivities) and use specific natural medicines that help repair the intestinal lining.
Here are the most important aspects of treatment:
1. Identify and remove food sensitivities: If you’ve developed more and more food sensitivities over time, this is a sure sign of leaky gut as the condition progresses. By removing the offending foods, this can reduce a lot of systemic symptoms. It also gives the gut a chance to begin the healing process.
2. An anti-inflammatory diet: In addition to cutting out food sensitivities, it’s important cut out processed sugars, gluten, alcohol, dairy, artificial chemicals, and processed food. These items do nothing to improve gut health, and most certainly worsen an already inflamed gut (not to mention the effect on the rest of your health).
The basics of an anti-inflammatory diet include plenty of vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and beans. In other words, a plant-based diet is ideal – you can of course include lean meats and fish if you’d like as well. Anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids from nuts and (mostly) fish, along with the fiber from plant foods will promote a balance of healthy gut bacteria, further improving gut health.
3. Probiotics: Healthy bacteria in the form of probiotics can balance the gut bacteria population and support gut repair. When an imbalance of disease-causing or inflammatory bacteria to healthy bacteria exits, this impedes not only gut health but also that of the entire person.
4. Natural medicines:We use several types of natural medicines to help decrease inflammation and restore the intestinal lining in leaky gut. Some of these include:
- L-Glutamine: An important amino acid for the enterocytes, or cells lining the intestinal tract, L-Glutamine serves as a primary fuel source for those cells, and influences how those cells repair themselves. The GI tract uses more glutamine than any other part of the body and when deficient it will lead to ulceration and shrinking (atrophy) of the intestinal lining.
- Gamma Oryzanol: Is derived from rice bran oil and has been shown to drastically improve different types of gastritis, or inflammation in the stomach.
- Okra, Marshmallow root and Slippery Elm are known as demulcents, or compounds that help repair and restore inflamed, ulcerated and otherwise damaged gut linings.
- Deglycyrrhizinated Licorice: Is a special form of licorice root for the gut; it has anti-spasmodic, laxative, and anti-inflammatory effects on the gut lining and is great for soothing digestive pain and discomfort.
These and other ingredients are found in Permeable Gut Formula, an ideal supplement for treating leaky gut because it contains diverse natural medicines all of which target leaky gut repair. Used with a good probiotic and a very clean diet, this is an ideal leaky gut treatment.
Restoring normal gut function and resolving leaky gut symptoms takes time – it’s certainly not a quick fix. All of these therapies work to repair and rejuvenate an important bodily system.
Repeatedly taking antibiotics, steroids like prednisone, acid blockers and antidepressants won’t cure the symptoms caused by leaky gut – they’ll only make things worse and worse and become more ineffective over time.
By using this approach, you’ll restore your health and notice your symptoms will begin to slowly resolve. It’s possible to regain your energy and vitality!