Part 1: 6 Things you can do
In this first part series I’ll take you through some products you can take to aid your recovery in healing your leaky gut.
1) Digestive enzymes
When your digestion is compromised, digestive enzymes are just that little extra tool that aid it along. Having a leaky gut puts your body up a lot of strain as it has to work extra hard in digesting food. Digestive enzymes help your body absorb nutrients and minerals that might otherwise be lost without their aid. Taking 1 or 2 tablets before a meal really makes a big difference. You should start a notice a marked improvement after a few weeks with less bloating, gas and constipation.
What is collagen?
Collagen is a protein. It provides structure to many components in our bodies: ligaments, bones, skin and tendons. It is like the glue that holds things together.
As we age, we start to lose elasticity and produce less collagen. Skin loses its youthful, firm, plump look, giving way to wrinkles. While this is inevitable, we can help our skin retain some structure with collagen.
When you have a leaky gut one of the best things you can take is collagen. Collagen contains essential amino acids that restore and rebuild the holes in the gut lining. These days there are a lot of supplements available. Its important to check the source of collagen as some are bovine or marine based (not good if you are vegan or have a shellfish allergy) Others are plant based. Collagen can come in pill or powder form. The powder form can be added to a smoothie or yogurt.
Personally I have felt the benefits from taking a good quality collagen supplement. My skin has improved and I have noticed less fine lines. My Hair and nails also grow a lot faster and stronger.
Generally collagen starts to decrease from as early as age 25, so all of us, leaky gut or not, can benefit from a good collagen supplement.
L-glutamine is an essential amino acid. It is found in the body. It is one of the building blocks of protein. This supplement can be taken to sustain strength, speed and endurance through exercise and to help the body recover from training. However it also greatly aids in repairing the lining of the gut walls.
It can be taken as a powder supplement mixed with water but you can take it in capsule form too. This is a crucial step toward healing a leaky gut. Many people notice a marked improvement in taking this supplement. Again, check the source as some can be animal derived or plant based.
*reduce gut inflammation
*tighten the gaps in the gut lining thus fewer food particles, pathogens and toxins will get through
*help to repair and rebuild the openings in the gut lining.
Probiotics are live micro organisms such as bacteria. We need a variety of these good bacteria in our guts to support healthy digestion. When a person has leaky gut, normally their good gut flora is very depleted and so taking a supplement helps to replenish the empty storehouse.
A good supplement should include as many of the good bacteria as possible optimal for a healthy gut.
Probiotics can also be found in foods such as :
*Yogurt (always look for a plain, unsweetened one that has live bifidobacterium cultures listed)
Probiotics are great for anyone with a compromised immune system, suffering from gluten intolerance, IBS, hormonal imbalances, stress and anxiety and depression and the inability to lose weight. When our second brain, the gut, is functioning correctly, it seems to help with a lot of these other issues.
From my own experience, taking probiotics made a huge difference not only in helping to heal my gut, but restore hormonal imbalances, aid in mood and helped to reduce depression.
For a long time, I took supplements and made my own kefir.
Years later, I no longer need to take a supplement as in a pill, but I do have plain, unsweetened, full fat yogurt daily which has added probiotics.
Fiber keeps your colon running smoothly. Eliminating toxins and waste on a daily basis is vital to keep inflammation at bay. Fiber is found naturally in many foods. We get the roughage we need from fruits, vegetables, various beans legumes, popcorn and many other sources.
Water is essential to healing and maintaining a healthy gut. We need water for all processes in the body. Just the process of the body eliminating waste, requires large amounts of water. Water is drawn into the bowel by means of osmosis and helps to make a stool easier to pass. If you are not drinking enough water, the body will have to resort to drawing the water from elsewhere in your body where it is needed, leading to dehydration, headaches and constipation. Water helps to keep the mucosal lining of the gut moist, and promotes the balance of good gut bacteria.
next in part 2: Things you need to avoid
Note: I am not qualified in medicine or nutrition. I speak from personal experience only in the aim of helping others. As always, consult the relevant healthcare practitioner regarding any health related issues/supplements/treatment. Please read my disclaimer on my blog should you want more information