What is a Leaky Gut?

Leaky gut syndrome is a condition that is gaining attention in the medical world. It affects millions of people and has a wide range of symptoms that can be debilitating to those who suffer from it. Leaky gut syndrome is caused by a permeability of the intestinal lining, which increases the absorption of toxins, bacteria, and undigested food particles into the bloodstream. This can lead to inflammation, food sensitivities, fatigue, skin rashes, and even autoimmune diseases. The most common cause of leaky gut is an imbalance of good and bad bacteria in the gut, known as dysbiosis. When the balance is out of whack, the bad bacteria can cause damage to the gut lining, leading to a leaky gut. Other causes include an unhealthy diet, chronic stress, and certain medications. The best way to treat leaky gut is to address the underlying cause. For example, if dysbiosis is the cause, then probiotics and prebiotics can help restore balance. Eating a diet rich in fiber and limiting processed foods can also help. It’s also important to manage stress levels and get enough sleep. In addition to these lifestyle changes, there are also several supplements that can help reduce inflammation and heal the gut lining. These include omega-3 fatty acids, glutamine, zinc, and quercetin. For those with more severe cases, medications can be prescribed to reduce inflammation and improve gut health. Leaky gut is a serious condition that can cause a wide range of symptoms. Fortunately, there are steps that can be taken to address the underlying cause and reduce the symptoms. A diet rich in fiber and probiotics, along with stress management and supplements, can help heal the gut lining and reduce inflammation. If the symptoms don’t improve with these measures, it’s important to seek medical advice. With the right treatment, leaky gut can be managed, and you can get back to living a healthy life.

Leaky Gut Risk Factors

  • NSAIDs
  • SIBO
  • Candida
  • Parasites
  • Stress
  • Allergies
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Celiac disease
  • Intolerances
  • Low stomach acid

Why is the test important?

Poor gut integrity has been identified as the link between gastrointestinal issues and systemic diseases. This assessment is beneficial in providing a course of treatment to address symptoms that spread throughout the body. To maintain a healthy condition, proper absorption of essential nutrients and rejection of hazardous substances is essential; this test is able to provide this knowledge. Anything that causes inflammation and disruption of the gut lining can cause increased permeability, such as food allergies, digestive problems, and taking medications like non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, alcohol, and pro-oxidants. This evaluation can determine the source of any irritation. Furthermore, it is a reliable and precise way to assess celiac disease or gluten-sensitive enteropathy. Finally, it is accurate in predicting relapse in Crohn’s disease patients who are currently in remission but are displaying no signs of the disorder.

Leaky Gut Symptoms

  • Gut Distension
  • Bloating
  • Constipation
  • Mood swings
  • Poor memory
  • Skin problems
  • Food Allergies/Intolerances
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Indigestion
  • Joint pains

What does the test involve?

Following an overnight fast, the patient collects a urine sample and then drinks a
drink containing lactulose and mannitol . A second urine sample is later drawn from a six-hour collection.
The report includes lactulose percent recovery, mannitol percent recovery and the
lactulose/mannitol ratio.

What does this test measure?

Prolonged inflammation in the gut wall can cause poor digestion and absorption of essential nutrients, which leads to a variety of health issues. This long-term “leaky gut” can detrimentally impact the liver’s detoxification capacity, depleting vital co-factors and heightening toxic reactions. Additionally, it can cause food allergies due to undigested particles entering the bloodstream. Furthermore, certain antigens from the digestive tract have been linked to autoimmune conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, thyroid disorder, and myasthenia gravis. Lastly, this impaired permeability can weaken the bowel’s defense system, leaving the body exposed to bacteria and harmful substances.

Leaky Gut Test Costs

The cost of the tests can vary between £98 and £300  depending on whether they are included as a biomarker in stool tests. Your functional medicine practitioner can recommend the most suitable test for your needs in line with symptoms and your medical history.