Symptoms of Leaky Gut
Often times, we are quick to dismiss ailments such as fatigue, joint pain, digestive problems, bloating, insomnia, mild depression and headaches as signs of aging, or maybe job-related stress, or even a part of parenthood in general. However, they can actually be symptoms of leaky gut.
Leaky gut, or “intestinal permeability,” is a condition in which the lining of the small intestine becomes damaged, causing undigested food particles, toxic waste products and bacteria to “leak” through the intestines and flood the blood stream. These substances entering the blood can cause an autoimmune response in the body including inflammatory and allergic reactions such as migraines, irritable bowel, eczema, chronic fatigue, food allergies, rheumatoid arthritis and more.
Frequently, these symptoms are caused by the foods we ingest daily, including gluten, soy and dairy. They become treated by the body as foreign invaders that have to be fought off, so the body produces antibodies, which triggers an immune response that can include the symptoms I mentioned above.
Here are some symptoms that might indicate that you have a leaky gut:
- Chronic diarrhea, constipation, gas or bloating
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Poor immune system
- Headaches, brain fog, memory loss
- Excessive fatigue
- Skin rashes and problems such as acne, eczema or rosacea
- Cravings for sugar or carbs
- Arthritis or joint pain
- Depression, anxiety, ADD, ADHD
- Autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, celiac disease or Crohn’s
The good news is that leaky gut can be repaired. The key to healing a leaky gut is changing your diet and eliminating the foods that your body treats as toxic.
For me, that included dairy, gluten, soy, and refined sugar. I’ve also recently gone a little more extreme by eliminating a few other things such as corn, nuts, seeds, beans and legumes, and nightshades. I decided to do that because I was developing more joint pain and stiffness and falling off of the wagon with my regular protocol. I have had a significant alleviation of my symptoms by doing this elimination. This particular protocol is recommended for 6-8 weeks before attempting to reintroduce certain foods. I’m currently on week 3, so I’ll keep you posted on my progress!
In addition to elimination, it’s also recommended to add some fermented foods, healthy fats such as fish, coconut and olive oils; avocados and flax; probiotics to restore the healthy bacteria in my gastrointestinal tract; and L-glutamine, an amino acid that rejuvenates the lining of the intestinal wall. (We’ll discuss this later in this series.)
Thank you for reading my blog about the symptoms of leaky gut! If you’ve found this information valuable, please share!