What Happens In Leaky Gut Syndrome?
Leaky gut syndrome is an ill-defined, hard to explain but seriously inconvenient gastrointestinal disorder that is the result of a leaky intestinal mucous membrane resulting in a series of symptoms like gas, stomach ache, altered bowel habits and cramps.
So what exactly happens in leaky gut syndrome?
The basic underlying issue is an increased permeability of the lining membrane of your intestine. This results in foreign proteins from diet and inside your bowel entering into the blood stream.
The initial reaction to such an invasion is that your body's policemen (the white blood cells in your circulation) rush to fight the invaders and destroy them before they can establish a toe-hold in your body. The first line of defense is your liver.
The liver is located right in the stream of blood from the intestine, and serves as a barrier against bacterial invasion. However, in severe leaky gut syndrome, there is a deluge of germs into the system and the liver is overwhelmed. It cannot cope with the constant dumping of waste into your blood from your damaged gut.
So the toxins, undigested food, yeast and other microbes begin to accumulate inside your body.
Next defense - Your immune system
Beyond the liver, there is a general defense mechanism of your body - the immune system. This sleeping giant is woken up by the attack that has overwhelmed your liver. The immune system goes into full alert and ramps up the protective action to eliminate all germs.
However, this generalized defensive action doesn't come without a cost. The inflammatory reaction generated through the immune system also worsens leakiness of the gut membrane, and temporarily worsens the leaky gut syndrome symptoms.
Now when this reaction becomes repetitive, as it sometimes does with leaky gut syndrome, there is the danger of things going awry. With a war being waged all over your body, tiny skirmishes break out in specific areas where the immune system mistakes your own tissues for the 'enemy' and attacks them - a condition called autoimmune disease.
How the immune system works
The white blood cells in your body produce antibodies. These are special proteins designed to neutralize the effect of germs and foreign proteins, including casein in milk, or antigens in nuts, grains and specific foodstuffs. These reactions also set in for leaky gut syndrome patients. And the reaction can be triggered by certain kinds of food, or even when chemicals like glycerin are ingested.
Food sensitivities are caused by this scenario. If you notice yourself getting symptoms like headache, sore throat, runny nose, or sinus headaches every time you eat particular kinds of food, then you might have leaky gut syndrome.
Damaged villi on the lining of your gut which are responsible for digesting food worsen the situation. The food that isn't absorbed in your gut can enter the bloodstream, provoking a general reaction. Nutrients are lost and your body suffers the effect of deprivation, leading to malnutrition.
Ultimately, what food you eat isn't responsible for the situation. The leaky gut which allows undigested food molecules into the blood, and provoke an immune response, is what leads to all the symptoms of the condition.
So how can you control or prevent leaky gut? There is an excellent guide that will show you some simple but effective ways to a "Leaky Gut Cure". Take a look here.