Leaky Gut Syndrome
DETOXIFICATION & LEAKY-GUT SYNDROME
The holistic approach to treating chronic disease and allergies is complex. The greatest breakthrough in research has been the recognition of the vital role that the gut plays in these circumstances. The gut is surrounded by the largest amount of immune tissue in the body, any increase in the permeability of the gut lining has a serious impact on the immune system.
THE BODY’S SECURITY SYSTEM
There are 5 layers or barriers, which protect our internal environment from ingested toxins, organisms and allergens:
1st layer – FRIENDLY BACTERIA [which forms up to 60% of the faecal content of our intestines]. Their function is to detoxify, digest and modulate the immune system.
2nd layer – MUCUS COATING [lining the inside of the intestine]
3rd layer – GUT LINING CELLS [it is the loss of “tight junctions” between these enterocytes that is the prime factor in the development of a leaky gut]
4th layer – IMMUNE SYSTEM [which is concentrated in the extensive Peyer’s patches around the intestines and constitutes up to 80% of the immune system]
5th layer – LIVER [which receives and processes everything which is absorbed via the intestines]
CAUSES OF A LEAKY GUT
Many factors in our modern Western lifestyle compromise these barriers, and thus, increase permeability.
- Stress [mental, physical or emotional]
- Alcohol, antibiotics, hormone pills, anti-inflammatories, stomach acid inhibitors(PPI), a deficiency of pancreatic enzymes and of stomach acid
- Food allergies, Candida Albicans (fungus), bacteria, parasites.
- Environmental pollutants and toxins (heavy metals, pesticides, detergents)
Altered gut permeability gives rise to allergies and other chronic diseases by allowing partially digested food particles, toxic waste and even bacteria to pass directly into the bloodstream. The immune system springs into action and forms antibodies around the foreign particles.
These clusters circulate to all parts of the body, causing a wide variety of symptoms such as eczema, asthma, arthritis, irritable bowel, migraines etc. The constant drain on the immune system can eventually lead to a depleted immunity, chronic illnesses, and to autoimmune diseases (rheumatoid arthritis, thyroiditis, cardiovascular diseases)
The burden on the liver is also greatly increased as it attempts to detoxify the blood.
Diminished stomach acid and pancreatic enzymes, which are essential to optimal digestion and breakdown of foods, further compromises the state of health.
Excessive amounts of cortisol released by the adrenal glands during stress will aggravate the leaky gut syndrome.
TREATMENT OF LEAKY GUT SYNDROME
The aim of this treatment protocol is to remove obstructions to metabolic processes and to encourage the body to self-regulate these vital processes. The 4 pillars of treatment are REMOVE, REPLACE, REINOCULATE & REPAIR.
Parasites, bacteria & fungi
Dietary toxins: additives, pesticides, detergents.
Food intolerances, heavy metals.
Insufficient stomach acid and digestive enzymes or bile salts.
Nutritional deficiencies, arising from poor digestion (iron, zinc)
Friendly bacteria (probiotics)
LIVER SUPPORT AND DETOX
The program includes the 4 stages mentioned above, combined with herbal remedies and other nutritional supplements. Correction of a leaky gut problem may take up to 6 months to achieve.
Dr. Alain Sanua
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