Unfortunately, western medicine doesn’t recognise leaky gut – there is no standard diagnosis and no specific treatment. What’s worse is that doctors often treat the symptoms of leaky gut, not the condition itself, by prescribing medication which often exacerbates the inflammation and damage to the digestive lining.
Just as there are four main causes of leaky gut, there are four steps to treating the conditions.
- Remove things that damage the gut
This includes removing damaging foods (such as gluten, sugar, GMO produce and vegetable oils), exposure to toxins (like antibiotics, pesticides and xenoestrogens) and situations that cause stress (as hard as this can be!).
- Replace damaging foods with healing foods
Foods that help to heal leaky gut include:
- Bone Broth – bone broth contains collagen and the amino acids glycine and proline which help to heal the damaged net and cell walls in the digestive tract.
- Fermented Foods – fermented foods like sauerkraut and kimchi, contain probiotics and acids to balance the pH levels in the gut and support the good bacteria.
- Raw Cultured Dairy – raw dairy contains short chain fatty acids and probiotics that help to heal the damaged net in the gut.
- Sprouted Foods – sprouting foods, such as nuts, help the gut break down the food, reducing the amount of work the damaged lining has to do as well as supporting the growth of good bacteria.
- Coconut Products – the mid-chain fatty acids in coconut are much easier to digest than other fats so they help in the healing process of the damaged gut lining.
- Repair the gut with supporting supplements
Google supplements that help heal a leaky gut and you’ll end up with a very long list. The top 5 supplements we have found to help heal include:
- Probiotics that contain at least 50 billion units, to help support the good bacteria; these should be varied on a regular basis
- Digestive enzymes to help break down your food and reduce the chance of partially digested particles leaching into your bloodstream;
- Liquorice root to improve stomach acid production (but be careful if you suffer from adrenal fatigue / low cortisol or high blood pressure as liquorice root can impact both);
- L-Glutamine to help repair the net and reduce inflammation; and
- Quercetin to reduce the holes in the net.
Rebalance with probiotics, real food and relaxation.
Just remember: Leaky gut didn’t happen over night so the healing of the condition won’t happen over night either. Be patient and consistent.