Leaky Gut Syndrome

By Mitchell Blume, RD, CDE, PA 

Do you experience symptoms such as increased bloating, gas, cramps, food sensitivities, and aches/pains that aren’t associated with a medically diagnosed condition? You may suffer from “Leaky Gut Syndrome”.

Unfortunately, this condition isn’t fully understood due to the lack of evidence and research. It is considered a “diagnosis of exclusion” when a specific cause of such symptoms cannot be medically determined. The etiology is thought to be associated with increased intestinal wall permeability. Our intestines are lined with junctions that manage what’s able to pass through into our bloodstream. With this syndrome, it is theorized that these junctions widen over time and don’t function properly, thus allowing substances to leak through, such as specific nutrients, bacteria, and undigested particles. This in turn can cause inflammation and lead to an immune reaction.

There is minimal research addressing treatment option for this condition. Due to this, there aren’t any recognized medication, procedures, or recommendations that have been shown to help. Generally, it has been found that diet may have an impact on symptomology. There are select foods thought to either improve or worsen the condition. If you suffer from, or believe you have, “Leaky Gut Syndrome”, below is a list of theorized diet recommendations that may help.

Avoid Include Supplements
Gluten – wheat, rye, or barley Bone broth – provides essential nutrients shown to heal the intestinal lining Probiotics – healthy bacteria
Cow’s dairy – milk, cheese, cream, etc. Cultured dairy – kefir and yogurt with probiotics (moderation) L-glutamine powder
Sugar – this feeds bacteria and yeast, so moderation is key Fermented vegetables – contain probiotics Digestive enzymes – helps break down food so easier to handle
  Non-starchy steamed vegetables – easier to digest Aloe Vera juice – heal intestinal lining
  Healthy fats – salmon, avocado, etc. promote healing Fish oil – health fat to promote healing
  Fruit intake – promote healing (moderation – 2 servings daily)  
  Ginger/Peppermint – soothing

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