Could you be suffering from Leaky Gut Syndrome?

Many people have leaky gut syndrome and it leads to all kinds of other health problems. As a consequence, we see that most people suffering with gastrointestinal problems such as abdominal bloating, excessive gas and cramps, as well as other symptoms such as allergies, eczema, acne, and even depression probably have “leaky gut syndrome” involved.

Leaky Gut Syndrome is also known as “Increased Intestinal Permeability”

The theory is that leaky gut syndrome is the result of damage to the intestinal lining, making it less able to filter and digest nutrients. As a result, some bacteria (and their toxins-yuck) as well as incompletely digested proteins and fats, may “leak” out of the intestines into the bloodstream.

Our Gut Lining – Our First Line Of Immune Defense

This medical mystery is a very gray area for many physicians who can’t seem to put a finger on the exact cause of the condition. Although the diagnosis of the leaky gut syndrome is controversial, there are hundreds of research articles in traditional medical literature connecting leaky gut syndrome to many diseases. This is because the intestinal lining is the first mechanism of defense for our immune system. (1)

Symptoms of Leaky Gut can vary from person to person depending on the level of damage and the tissues being affected. For example, multiple food sensitivities, nutritional deficiencies, allergies, and skin rashes are all signs that your foreign invaders entering the bloodstream are stressing out your immune system.

There could be several contributing factors to this issue…


Many of the grains we consume in the western diet contain gliadin which gives bread the ability to rise properly during baking. What is gliadin? Gliadin is one of the main components of the gluten fraction of the wheat seed and is found in wheat, rye, and barley. Furthermore, research published by the Center of Celiac Research of the University of Maryland found gliadin plays a role leading to increased intestinal permeability in both those with and without celiac disease.(2) As you can see, these grains are actually interfering with the absorption of minerals and digestive enzymes.


Research has shown that lectins have damaging effects on cells lining the intestinal cavity where digested food passes through and from which nutrients are absorbed.(3)

In addition, lectins may alter your gut flora which allows harmful bacteria to grow and have even been associated with leptin resistance, a pre-diabetic condition.(4)

Foods with high concentrations of lectins, such as beans, cereals, soy, nuts, and potatoes, may be harmful if consumed in excess, in uncooked or improperly cooked forms. By contrast, Cooking destroys most lectins. Cooked lectins undergoing digestion rarely cause serious problems, but they can cause chronic digestive issues. For example, eating raw nuts and seeds may allow lectins to be absorbed into the bloodstream more effectively than roasted or other prepared varieties.(5)

And here’s a delicious recipe for roasting your nuts! Trust me, just try it!


Beyond a poor diet, our gut is also vulnerable to chronic stress. For example, stress-induced changes affect gastric secretions, gut motility and function, and blood flow.(6) To make matters worse, the hormones responsible for the body’s response to stress (like cortisol) have an effect on the gut through modulation of inflammation, hypersensitivity, increased perception to pain, and regulation of gut motility.(6)

In conclusion, reducing inflammation and providing a healthier gastrointestinal environment can make a big difference in your gut’s susceptibility to the negative effects of stress.

Restoring Your Gut’s Health
  1. Eat a healthy diet. This means to avoid refined carbohydrates, sugary foods, packaged foods, junk foods, processed foods, sodas, white flour, and preservatives.

A basic healthy diet, like a Paleo Diet, would include:

  • daily intake of fresh vegetables and fruits
  • high-quality protein from organic (if possible) sources of fresh fish, chicken, and eggs
  • healthy fats such as coconut oil, avocados, and olive oil.
  1. Fish Oil: omega-3 fatty acids boost the immune system and reduce inflammation.
  1. L-Glutamine has been shown to feed the cells that line the intestinal tract, increase the number of healthy bacteria in the gut and help heal and restore the gut’s functional integrity.
  1. Exercise can reduce stress levels and contribute to lower levels of inflammation.
  • try to get 20-30 minutes of physical activity 4-5 times a week
  • be sure to include a weight routine for at least 2 of those days

How Do I Find Out If I Have Leaky Gut?

Leaky Gut syndrome is associated with many symptoms that may be leading you towards further disease. Unfortunately, Nutrient deficiency is common in many individuals who express these symptoms related to Leaky Gut. So it is vital to optimize your vitamin and mineral levels before it’s too late. Testing methods including a comprehensive blood test and tissue mineral analysis can tell you exactly what you need and how much. Take the guesswork out and get tested today!


  1. Dr. Massey, Patrick. M.D. Ph.D. Conditions – Gastrointestinal – Leaky gut syndrome. ALT-MED Medical and Physical Therapy. 2013. Acessed on April 28, 2013
  1. Drago, Sandro, Asmar, Ramzi El, Di Pierro, Mariarosaria, et. al. Gliadin, zonulin and gut permeability: Effects on celiac and non-celiac intestinal mucosa and intestinal cell lines. Scand J Gastroenterol. 2006 Apr;41(4):408-19. PMID: 16635908
  1. Ovelgönne JH, Koninkx JF, Pusztai A, et. al. Decreased levels of heat shock proteins in gut epithelial cells after exposure to plant lectins. Gut. 2000 May;46(5):679-87.
  1. Jönsson, Tommy. Olsson, Stefan. Ahrén, Bo. Agrarian diet and diseases of affluence – Do evolutionary novel dietary lectins cause leptin resistance? BMC Endocrine Disorders 2005, 5:10
  1. Power, Laura. Dietary Lectins: Blood Types & Food Allergies. Accessed on April 29, 2013
  1. Konturek, T., Brzozowski, S.J., Konturek. Stress and the gut: Pathophysiology, clinical consequences, diagnostic approach, and treatment options. Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology. 2011, 62, 6, 591-599.

Blog Categories

Talk to a Practitioner

Before you take the leap to get started, see if we can help you first! Sign up for a free 15-minute phone consultation and talk with a practitioner to learn if this unique program is right for you.

steps to improve your thyroid health

7 Steps to Improve Your Thyroid Health

Read more natural health articles

Sleep Issues and Chronic Disease

Sleep issues and chronic disease. Is the lack of a good night’s rest the simple answer to your problems? The Consequences of Poor Sleep Did you know there is such thing as World Sleep Day? This important day falls in March to draw attention to the issue of sleep...

read more

Why Can’t I Lose Weight?

Why can’t I lose weight?  I hear this question all day long, so I decided to write a pointed answer to this common question. Common knowledge is that is you cut calories, you will eventually lose weight.  The thought is that if you burn more calories than you consume,...

read more

Introduction to Thermography

History of Breast Thermography In 1982 the FDA approved breast thermography as an adjunctive diagnostic breast cancer screening procedure. Since the late 1950s, Breast cancer thermography has been the subject of extensive research. For example: more than 800...

read more

Stress: Adrenal Fatigue

Could You Be Suffering From Stress and Adrenal Fatigue? "Stress is an ignorant state. It believes that everything is an emergency." -Natalie Goldberg Do you wake up in the morning feeling tired? Does your boost of energy dwindle as the afternoon approaches; causing...

read more

Natural help for Type 2 Diabetes

Do you, or a loved one either have type 2 diabetes or have what is called Pre-Diabetes, AKA Syndrome X?  I have a lot of patients coming in with these two disorders, so before I talked about it, I decided to look into exactly what the American Diabetes Association is...

read more

Menopause, Hormones, and Osteoporosis

After practicing Nutritional Response Testing and Functional Medicine for the past 23 years, I have found a hierarchy of things that cause, or contribute to symptoms of menopause, hormonal dysregulation, and osteoporosis.  I use Nutrition Response Testing and...

read more