The term "leaky gut" refers to an intestinal barrier that has been damaged or weakened. Essential nutrients aren’t able to be completely absorbed as microbes, antigens as other potentially harmful substances will migrate throughout the body.
If you experience any of these 8 symptoms for an extended period of time, you might have a leaky gut:
1. Food Sensitivities
Your gut becomes inflamed when you eat something you’re sensitive to, and inflammation often causes a leaky gut. These include eggs, dairy, gluten, corn, soy, peanuts, and nightshade vegetables.
2. Mood Issues
Mental health conditions like mood swings, anxiety, depression, attention-deficit disorder (ADD), and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are also linked to leaky gut. If you have problems with your digestive system, it can directly affect your mental health.
3. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
It is a digestive disorder characterized by changes in bowel movements and stool appearances, stomach cramping, gas, bloating, heartburn, and loss of appetite. All these symptoms will be interconnected with a leaky gut.
4. Malabsorptions of Nutrients
Sometimes we have gut issues when our gut is not absorbing nutrients from the food we eat. Hence, we need to take digestive enzymes to aid the process.
5. Autoimmune Diseases
If you’re diagnosed with autoimmune diseases such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, celiac disease, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, or psoriasis, there’s a good indication that you might also have the leaky gut syndrome.
6. Inflammatory Skin Disorders
Inflammatory skin disorders like rosacea, acne, and eczema are linked to leaky gut syndrome due to the gut-skin connection. Some studies indicate that even simple skin-like acne arises because of gut inflammation.
7. Thyroid Issues
Low thyroid function results in chronic fatigue, slower metabolism, weight gain, and depression. And there’s been a link between this issue and leaky gut.
8. Difficulty Losing Weight
A study from Brazil found that intestinal permeability is linked to gut dysbiosis, an unhealthy diet, and nutritional deficiencies — all factors that can impair the metabolism and make weight loss difficult.
The key to healing a leaky gut is to avoid gluten, dairy, soy, refined sugar, caffeine, and alcohol. These foods or drinks may irritate our gut, affect our intestinal lining and turn your body toxic. You can consult a nutritionist to reverse or heal from the leaky gut syndrome.
Written by: Ng Kai Wen
BSc.(Hons). Food Science with Nutrition
Reviewed By: Jasmine Lim
Love Earth Organic Nutritionist
Bachelor of Science Degree in
Dietetics (major) & Food Science (minor)
Iowa State University, USA