by Dr. Bill Rawls
What causes leaky gut syndrome, also known as intestinal permeability? Dr. Bill Rawls explains some of the most common culprits, and shares some natural solutions for restoring a healthy gut membrane and preventing leaky gut. Learn more about leaky gut here »
Question: What Causes Leaky Gut Syndrome?
Hello, everyone. Dr. Rawls here. And the question is, What causes leaky gut?
Basically, we all have leaky gut. You have to get back to the idea, Well, what is the job of our intestinal tract?
The job of our intestinal tract is extracting the nutrients that our cells need to survive from all the stuff that we eat. That’s a really tough job, because there’s really a small minority of the things that are in food that we actually need to nourish our cells.
We have to get those nutrients across what we call the gut-blood barrier. There’s actually a membrane in the gut that separates all the things that we don’t want from the things that we do want. Those things we want have to cross.
That membrane is just a little bit leaky, so we all have foreign proteins and different things that get across. That’s why 70% of our immune system is actually in the intestinal tract — to prevent these abnormal things, these foreign things, from crossing into our bloodstream.
But if you eat bad food, are chronically stressed, which slows everything down, and all of that grows bad bacteria, you strip the protective mucus barrier away from that gut intestinal lining, so it becomes more porous. You have more foreign proteins that are crossing over, and you can actually have bacteria from the gut crossing over, and that can cause general inflammation in the body. It basically clogs up our lymph nodes and our lymph system, and it can really, really make us miserable.
But beyond that, if you have what we call dysbiosis, or disruption of the balance of the gut, those gut microbes can produce chemical substances that cross over and actually end up in the brain. They can agitate and irritate our brain so there’s neurological, systemic, and a whole range of other symptoms.
The solution is, you’ve got to change your diet, you’ve got to reduce your stress, and you’ve got to use herbs and things that help seal that membrane back up the way it’s supposed to be.