How Your Food Sensitivities Are Associated With Leaky Gut Syndrome
Your gastrointestinal tract influences both the brain and your bodies immune system. Your immune cells are widespread in the gastrointestinal system, particularly in the lining of the small intestine. It is in this intestinal lining that the normally leak-proof lining allows for the absorption of proteins, fatty acids, and carbohydrates (as simple sugars).
Sometimes there are abnormalities in the intestinal lining that normally cause the sieve to become leaky, allowing for bigger particles of food to pass through. This is called “leaky gut syndrome”
When this happens, larger particles of food pass into the bloodstream, causing an immune response that leads to various diseases like food sensitivities and autoimmune diseases. The intestinal lining is only one cell layer thick so that can become damaged fairly easily. When this layer becomes damaged, the holes in the sieve become bigger so that larger molecules of fat, carbohydrates, partially digested protein, and undigested protein can pass into the bloodstream.
Some of these undigested food particles enter the liver, which needs to metabolize it. The rest just circulates through the bloodstream, stressing the immune system and other organs in the body. Leaky gut syndrome has been associated with ADHD, food sensitivities, and autism, among other problems.
True Food Allergies only affect 1-5% of adults and 3-7% of children, which involve allergic reactions usually occurring immediately after exposure to food allergens. They are caused by the release of the chemical histamine and other inflammatory compounds from specific immune cells. They can cause symptoms such as swollen lips, hives, difficulty breathing, itchy eyes or stuffy nose or anaphylaxis.
Food Intolerances affect a far higher percentage of people, perhaps as many as 75% experience other adverse reactions to food. These can be classified as either food intolerances or food hypersensitivities. Food intolerances generally refer to nonimmunological reactions to foods such as those that occur when food is improperly digested. A common example of this is lactose intolerance with gas bloating or diarrhea or headaches and flushing experienced by people eating MSG
Testing for Leaky Gut
If you want to know if you have leaky gut syndrome, you can undergo a lactulose-mannitol intestinal permeability test that is usually done by a medical doctor that specializes in nutrition. The test is cheap but isn’t covered under most people’s insurance policies. Even so, the test may be worth having done, as it is the only way to find out if you have the disorder.
Causes of Leaky Gut
Leaky gut can be caused by several factors. Trauma, drug use (such as antibiotics and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), stress, parasites, bacterial infections in the abdomen, eating junk food, and alcohol abuse can all contribute to getting leaky gut syndrome.
Starchy foods, sugary foods, and foods that are high in hydrogenated vegetable oil are particular culprits behind getting leaky gut syndrome. This can lead to leaky gut syndrome and food sensitivities.
It just takes a single binge-eating episode on junk foods or a course of antibiotics to cause the gut to become leaky. This why you should eat more whole and natural foods and less junk foods. Whole foods communicate with the brain, leading to a sound mind-body connection when junk food doesn’t do this.
Leaky gut syndrome may also result in a deluge of wrong information to be sent from the digestive system to the brain and body. Foods like milk (which contains casein) and wheat protein (which contains gluten) are exorphins that act like morphine in the brain. These exorphins can build up, leading to food sensitivities and toxicity to the brain.
There are three steps you need to take in order to have fewer food sensitivities, less ADHD, and less autism: 1) normalize the gut flora; 2) take care of the leaky gut; and 3) manage inadequacies in nutrition.
Breast fed infant s have fewer food sensitivities and also have greater amounts of Bifidobacterium in their GI tract. Kids who aren’t breastfed have more food sensitivities, less Bifidobacteria, and have a decreased chance of having chronic medical conditions (like asthma) when compared to breastfed infants.
Those people who have Lactobacillus in their gut have a decreased chance of having food sensitivities and a decreased chance of having chronic medical conditions, such as ADHD and asthma. They also have a decreased incidence of having a leaky gut and the problems associated with having it.
Foods that contribute to having a leaky gut include things like deep fried foods, fast food, canned foods, overcooked food, and junk food. These foods increase the size of the pores in the gut, allowing for increased leakage of undigested food to enter the blood stream and allow for more food sensitivities.
How to Stop Food Sensitivities
There are changes you can make in your diet that can decrease your risk of having food sensitivities and a leaky gut.
• You should stop drinking coffee and should decrease the amounts of starches, sugar, and dietary fat in your diet.
• Replace sugary soft drinks, fruit juices, and coffee with green tea, water, or herbal tea.
• Eat more whole foods, like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains as these cause fewer food sensitivities and can decrease the risk of having leaky gut syndrome.
Avoiding junk food and sticking to a diet rich in whole foods, organic fruits and vegetables and whole grains is a lifelong commitment to your good health.
This leads to less, or no Food Sensitivities, a healthy brain, a healthy body and a new positive outlook on life.