How To Heal Leaky Gut
As triggers and underlying causes for leaky gutas well as how it manifests itselfcan vary so greatly from individual to individual, there is unfortunately no standardised treatment plan that works for everyone and this is why one of the most searched for phrases when it comes to leaky gut is: how long to heal leaky gut. For serious gut health issues, its always a good idea to consult with a skilled naturopath, gut health specialist or integrative healthcare practitioner who can help to manage your symptoms.
But, if youre keen to help heal your gut at homeand better read the signs leaky gut is healinghere are six simple ways to kickstart the process
Who Does Intestinal Permeability Affect
The known causes of intestinal permeability involve systematic erosion of the intestinal lining. This is not a simple feat. Your intestinal lining has many layers of defense. And while it can be injured temporarily, it is designed to constantly repair and replenish itself. To actually wear it down enough to penetrate the lining requires a significant assault. That usually means a chronic disease, chronic drug use or alcohol abuse or radiation therapy.
The theory of leaky gut syndrome suggests that anything that injures your gut lining can lead to intestinal permeability if the injury is persistent enough. Therefore, common everyday factors such as diet and stress may cumulatively wear down your intestinal lining until it becomes permeable. Scientists arent sure about this, but they do agree that these everyday factors may cause inflammation in your gut lining and uncomfortable GI symptoms for you.
Speak With Your Healthcare Provider
Different medications can have different impacts on your gastrointestinal health, so if you take a medication and experience gut troubles, let your doctor know, as there may be a relationship between the two. For example, the Food and Drug Administration advises that an upset stomach is a common side effect of some medications. Your provider may want to try switching your meds to see if something else would work better.
Some medications, such as antibiotics, can also impact your gut bacteria. For that reason, some clinicians suggest that their patients take probiotic supplements in addition to certain drugs to help reestablish those living organisms in the gut. Just make sure to talk to your doctor before you make any changes to your medication routine.
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What Is The Best Home Remedy For Gastritis
Gastritis has many causes, so there are no bullet-proof home remedies for treating the condition. There are, however, some lifestyle changes and home remedies that may significantly alleviate symptoms.
- Eat four or five small meals a day rather than three large meals.
- Avoid foods that irritate or damage the stomach, such as alcohol or spicy foods.
- Avoid foods like dairy, fatty foods, coffee, and soft drinks that can increase stomach acid.
- Smoking irritates the stomach lining and increases stomach acid, so put the cigarettes aside.
- For pain relief, avoid taking NSAIDs such as aspirin or ibuprofen. NSAIDs reduce substances that protect the stomach lining from acid. Instead, switch to acetaminophen.
- Use over-the-counter medications such as antacids or acid reducers to alleviate symptoms at mealtime. Liquid bismuth subsalicylate, found in popular medications like Pepto-Bismol, can do double duty at relieving symptoms and holding back an H. pylori infection.
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Strategy #: Feed Healthy Bacteria
Fibers and starches in our food cannot always be broken down by us. Gut microbes ferment and break down these substances for us.
In return, they produce invaluable substances such as Short Chain Fatty Acids , B vitamins, and Vitamin K2.SCFAs support healthy mucosa by promoting the production of mucus & regulating immune cell development locally in the gut .
Spore probiotics increase SCFAs by as much as 40% and clinical research being readied for publication demonstrates that spores also double to quadruple the diversity of other gut flora .
You can also support SCFAs directly with supplementation. We use Enterovite to support SCFA levels in the short-term while working on more global issues of gastrointestinal health and microbial diversity.
In the absence of sufficient fibers & starches, healthy bacteria starve & microbial diversity drops. Yeast & opportunistic organisms also grow & take up more areas in the gut.
Importance of Adding & Maintaining Diet Diversity
Ancestral diets were rich in food diversity. It wasnt until the advent of modern agriculture that our diets became less diverse.
Human ancestors consumed numerous varieties of plants, animals, insects, and roots and tubers. Now, we eat a much more limited array of foods in our diet. The modern diet is unnaturally high in monocultures of wheat, dairy, corn, and soy.
Symptoms are a sign that you are lacking the bacterial balance in your gut to ferment these tough-to-digest foods.
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The Four Rs Of Gut Healing
If you struggle with digestive issues youre not alone. One in 150 Canadians lives with Crohns or colitis according to Crohns and Colitis Canada, with another 13 to 20 percent of Canadians being affected by irritable bowel syndrome . Maintaining gut health and alleviating related symptoms is not always easy. There are many factors that can lead to a disturbance in gut function. The four Rs protocol works to address the underlying causes of imbalance and aids in alleviating symptoms.
Working with your healthcare provider, you will first determine the best approach for your particular situation and symptoms, then move through these four steps. This process will take time, commitment and perseverance.
What Are The Symptoms Of Gastritis
Many people with gastritis donât have any symptoms. However, gastritis can cause indigestion . See the separate leaflet called Indigestion .
Gastritis may start suddenly or may develop slowly and last for a long period of time .
Pain in your upper tummy just below the breastbone is the common symptom. It usually comes and goes. It may be eased if you take antacid tablets. Sometimes food makes the pain worse. The pain may also wake you from sleep.
Other symptoms which may occur include:
- Loss of appetite.
- You may feel particularly âfullâ after a meal.
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Chronic gastritis is found in two subjects. In malignant anemia patients, there is an autoimmune cause. Severe gastrointestinal trauma, such as gastric atrophy accompanied by complete or incomplete loss of wall cells, cause gastric acid deficiency or absence of acid. There are three types of autoantibodies against the wall cells. In the elderly with no malignant anemia, there are also 60% of cases with autoantibodies against the wall cells, but no antibodies against the intrinsic factor. Very few cases have autoantibodies against gastrin secretory cells. Patients in this group often have a gastric ulcer, which may be due to dyspnea of the pyloric sphincter and reflux of bile acid.
Signs Of An Unhealthy Gut
Many facets of modern life such as high stress levels, too little sleep, eating processed and high-sugar foods, and taking antibiotics can all damage our gut microbiome. This in turn may affect other aspects of our health, such as the brain, heart, immune system, skin, weight, hormone levels, ability to absorb nutrients, and even the development of cancer.
There are a number of ways an unhealthy gut might manifest itself. Here are seven of the most common signs:
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Healing Your Gut Through Diet
Regardless of the cause of a leaky gut, proper nutrition can help you feel better.
The foods that you eat determine if you are giving your body a chance to heal, says Dr. La Vella. Diet is one of the important parts of managing the symptoms of a leaky gut.
She notes that ultra-processed foods are a common problem because they are low in fiber, high in fat and often contain chemical additives. This combination can harm healthy bacterial growth and damage tight junctions in the intestines.
Dr. La Vella recommends filling up on whole foods from all the food groups including fruits, vegetables, grains, lean protein and cultured dairy. Look for recipes for a Mediterranean-style diet or the DASH diet, which use healthy ingredients prepared in a tasty manner.
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What Is The Best Drink For Gastritis
Some people with gastritis can tolerate small amounts of cola or other caffeinated or caffeine-free carbonated soft drinks, but youre better off avoiding soda all together. Better beverage options include water, cranberry juice, and green tea, which has been linked to a decreased risk of gastritis and stomach cancer.
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Can Gastritis Be Prevented
Experts dont know it is possible to stop gastritis from happening. But you may lower your risk of getting the disease by:
- Having good hygiene habits, especially washing your hands. This can keep you from getting the H. pylori bacteria.
- Not eating or drinking things that can irritate your stomach lining. This includes alcohol, caffeine, and spicy foods.
- Not taking medicines such as aspirin and over-the-counter pain and fever medicines .
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Four Essential Rules To Follow For Probiotics
Rule #1:Probiotics need to make it through the stomach acid alive.
We are colonized as infants with gut flora through development, birth & breastfeeding in the first two years of life.
When our gastrointestinal system matures, the stomach pH acidifies into a much more protective barrier. The newly acidic stomach now kills the majority of live probiotics. The stomach acid kills supplemented probiotics before they ever reach the intestines.
Once colonized as babies, we maintain the flora we received from birth and breastfeeding by consuming different fibers and starches in our diet.
If we eat a limited diet, stress ourselves out, take antibiotics, eat sugar, or drink lots of alcohol as adults we beat down our flora and lose diversity and ultimately degrade our gut mucosa!
I use Master Supplements probiotics like Theralac, Trubifido & Truflora to re-establish gut flora. The company has a patented Acid Proof Delivery method that allows the probiotics to be delivered alive deep into the intestines. Bifidospectrum Probiotic also has safe delivery through stomach acid and bile acids.
Moreover, the company couples the unique delivery with another patented Lactostim ingredient that helps rehydrate and feed the bacteria once delivered in the gut which gives it an advantage against enteric-coated probiotics.
Other name-brand probiotic brands can be high quality but you need a high dose per each probiotic strain to provide the right probiotic support.
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How Is It Diagnosed
There are several tests that may be performed. You may be tested for an infection with H. pylori which may be done with a blood, stool or breath test. An upper endoscopy may be performed to actually look with a camera in your esophagus, stomach and small intestine. Small tissue samples can be taken and examined under a microscope. Sometime x-rays of the upper GI tract will be obtained.
Strategy #: Coat And Heal
There are strategies to help soothe an irritated gut lining.
Many botanicals or herbal extracts have mucus-like properties that help to coat the irritated mucosa.
Aloe is one of the best-known home remedies for an irritated gut.
Aloe is recognizably very mucus-like & for its cooling effect. It physically coats damaged areas of the lining, and prevents future irritation allowing healing to begin. Coating the gut lining also blocks the ability of pathogens to adhere to exposed areas helping to reduce or manage infections.
Aloe extracts also contain a wealth of plant chemicals that have antioxidant & balancing qualities. Use the oral gels short-term as they may create dependence on it as a laxative. For this reason, I generally stick to aloe leaf extract found in powders and capsules.
Deglycyrrhizinated Licorice , Marshmallow root, Slippery Elm, Mastic gum, Mullein, Okra, and Comfrey also have mucus-like properties that aid in a coating & calming effect on the gut lining.
Products like Mastic Gum /DGL by Klaire Labs or GI Benefits by Davinci Labs combine a variety of these herbal extracts. MegaGuard by Microbiome Labsand PyloGuard by Microbiome Labs supports normal H. pylori levels, the stomach and intestinal mucous linings, and motility.
Quell Mucous Lining Inflammation
Another strategy to promote healing is to reduce excess inflammation.
Curcumin is a wonderful anti-inflammatory extract of turmeric and is one of the most researched botanical extracts in the world.
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A Healthy Gut Is A Happy Gut
Health begins in the gut. If gut dysfunction exists, improving your health can be challenging no matter how many expensive supplements you take.
But heres the truth: Healing leaky gut syndrome is complex and can take time. And without the right tools and proper guidance, you could end up right back where you started.
We believe your health is worth the effort.
If youre in the Nashville area, schedule afree 20-minute discovery call with our New Patient Coordinator to see how we can help restore your gut health. Your gut health matters, and more importantly, you matter.
Eat More Healthy Fats
N-butyrate, a short-chain fatty acid, helps feed the cells that line the gut and help them heal. Your gut bacteria can produce more n-butyrate if you feed them soluble fibers in fruits and vegetables. You also can get n-butyrate in the form of Ghee, which is clarified butter. Another source of healthy fat is coconut oil, which contains medium-chain fatty acids that are good for the gut!
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Things You Can Do To Ease Gastritis
If you think the cause of your gastritis is repeated use of NSAID painkillers, try switching to a different painkiller thats not in the NSAID class, such as paracetamol.
You may want to talk to a GP about this.
- eating smaller, more frequent meals
- avoiding foods that can irritate the stomach, such as spicy, acidic or fried foods
- avoiding or cutting down on alcohol
- quitting smoking if you smoke
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How To Improve The Stomach Lining
Eight best home remedies for gastritis Follow an anti-inflammatory diet. A diet to prevent gastritis should include broccoli and olive oil. Take a garlic extract supplement. Some research suggests that garlic extract can help reduce the symptoms of gastritis. Try probiotics. Drink green tea with manuka honey. Use essential oils. Eat lighter meals. Avoid smoking and overuse of painkillers.
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What Are The Symptoms Of An Unhealthy Gut
Each gastrointestinal tract is as individual as the owner. But there are a variety of symptoms that may indicate that all is not well in your digestive system.
Do you struggle with:
- Frequent cravings for sugary food?
- White film on your tongue?
If some or all of these symptoms seem familiar, you may have an unhealthy GI tract. Some of the possibilities include: Intestinal permeability , yeast overgrowth, SIBO , or gut inflammation. These are fairly common conditions we see in our office, which can be largely blamed on the Western way of life and the Standard American Diet .
Strategy #: Kill Overgrowth Of Bacteria Fungi Or Viruses
What came first, the chicken or the egg?
The concept applies to infections and the gut. Infections can cause gut dysfunction. Gut dysfunction also creates an immune environment that invites infection. In either case, when an infection is present, it must be dealt with appropriately. A lingering infection delays & blocks healing from occurring.
As I mentioned earlier, its tough to rebuild something that is still smoldering. A hidden infection can be a cause of the smoldering.
Here are a number of infections worth discussion when it comes to mucosal health in the gut.
Epstein-Barr Virus :
EBV infection can linger & reactivate chronically years after acute infection or exposure.
EBV is in the same family of viruses as Herpes Simplex Virus , Herpes zoster , Cytomegalovirus & others. All of these viruses share an envelope or lipid capsule as part of their viral structure.Lipid-coated viruses such as EBV are implicated in chronic disease, fatigue, & inflammation throughout the body including the gut mucosa.
EBV lives in your lymphocytes which are highly present in the gut-associated lymphoid tissue . It turns lymphocytes into a zombie like state where they stick around in the body much longer than intended.
In my practice, I use Ultimate Monolaurin by Inspired Nutrition.
Helicobacter pylori :
H. pylori is prevalent in the Western world. High antibiotic use the US population may increase its incidence compared to other parts of the world.
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Enjoy A Glass Of Green Juice
Green vegetables are rich in living phytonutrients and are highly alkalising, assisting your body to cleanse, heal and nourish in a perfect environment. They can also assist the body to detoxify.
Enjoy Healthy Chef Everyday Greens daily, a superfood blend containing cold-pressed greens, probiotics and L-Glutamine to support digestive health.
How Do I Know If I Have An Ulcer Or Gastritis
There are also many differences between the two conditions. Both conditions cause inflammation in the stomach lining, but gastritis is general inflammation while an ulcer is a patch of inflamed stomach lining. Ulcers cause more severe, localized pain with the risk of cancer, bleeding, and stomach perforation.
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