Leaky gut syndrome is believed to be a problem that can happen when a person has candida overgrowth in the digestive system. It refers to the gut wall or intestinal lining becoming damaged which leads to partially digested foods, bacteria and toxins passing through and entering the bloodstream. Microvilli cells are damaged and cannot do their job well enough, which is to make the enzymes that are essential to good digestion. So we are no longer digesting our food properly, which means the body is not getting the nutrients it needs and harmful substances are in our blood. These are seen as invaders by the body and subsequent symptoms can be very unpleasant.
Some believe Leaky Gut Syndrome may have a causing role in conditions such as,
- chronic fatigue syndrome
- Crohn’s disease
- pancreatic dysfunction
- inflammatory bowel
This is because as the immune system becomes overburdened with the toxins being excreted by the fungus and that are entering the bloodstream the liver can not deal with it and they get flushed back into the blood where they reach other organs, muscle and tissue.
Causes of Leaky Gut Syndrome
Candida overgrowth is not the only cause of Leaky Gut Syndrome. And the problem with it is that some of the causes are also symptoms, and some of the symptoms can become causes. It becomes a nasty cycle that is hard to interrupt. Other causes include,
- Diets too low in fiber
- Food allergies
- Some drugs including antibiotics
- Diets that are too high in refined sugar
- Poor digestion
- Parasitic infections
- Pathogenic bacteria
- Deficiency in zinc
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin and ibuprofen
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Nonpathogenic bacteria, such as Klebsiella or Pseudomonas
Leaky Gut Syndrome symptoms
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Candidiasis which causes its own symptoms such as bloating, carb craving, fatigue, allergies, yeast infections, depression, anxiety and more.
- Skin rashes
- Weakened immune system
- Poor memory
- Lack of focus or concentration
Our internal balance
In our intestinal tracts are billions of micro-organisms, and in a normal healthy person these are in balance. A small number are candida and these are controlled by the good bacteria. The good bacteria have a variety of functions, they help the immune system, help keep the gut healthy, help remove toxins from the bowel. The two key important good bacteria are lactobacillus acidophilus and bifidus. The former live mostly in the upper small intestine and the later live more in the large intestine and lower small intestine. These friendly bacteria basically make it harder for unfriendly flora to move in by taking up all the room in there! They help with vitamin production, making short chain fatty acids, detoxifying and enzyme production.
Treating Leaky Gut Syndrome
The important thing is to deal with the cause not just try to patch up the symptoms. There are several options depending on your cause and your preference but the key things to do are get rid of the overgrowth of candida, use digestive enzyme to help get your digestive process running properly again, use probiotics to keep the good bacteria topped up to optimum numbers, eat well and take supplements to replace the nutrients you are lacking.
Candida – Causes Leaky Gut Syndrome when the roots of the pathogenic fungus go through the intestinal tract searching for food. There are several natural treatments that are effective for candida such as acidophilus supplements, caprylic acid, pau d’arco, fresh garlic, and colloidal silver.
Diet – Eat high fiber, whole grains, legumes, leafy greens, uncooked vegetables. Cut out foods candida thrives on such as sugar, refined foods, fermented products and fungus.
Supplements – Essential oils such as borage, evening primrose, fish oils, flax seed oil. Olive leaf extract, grapefruit seed extract, oil or oregano.
Detox – Use detoxifying products to help clean yourself out, psyllium seed and husk can help as can citrus pectin.
Digestive enzymes – These can hep with the symptoms while you are dealing with the Leaky Gut Syndrome. There are several to choose from on the market, and can help with absorbing nutrients and stop partially digested proteins from being absorbed which overworks the liver. Foods can also provide enzymes though it is best to eat them raw, as the cooking can damage them. Foods like mangoes, pineapples, bananas, sprouts, avocados and papaya are all good.
Probiotics – When supplementing with probiotics look for the 2 important ones Lactobacillus acidophilus and bifidus. Taking probiotics to keep high levels of good bacteria will help with digestive problems, stop a candida overgrowth, and help absorb nutrients.