This article was written by a guest contributor. For guest contribution guidelines, please visit this page.
Keith J. Myers is the editor in chief and author of CBD column of Health Canal. Since 2012, Keith has overseen and directed the editorial growth and skill of this website.
Although the gut is one of the most important parts of your body that determines your overall health, people mostly don’t give much importance to it until they start experiencing health issues and other physical symptoms. A leaky gut is a condition that may occur due to the intake of unhealthy foods or the toxins and pollutants that they are surrounded by in the environment. As people often start suffering from autoimmune diseases due to a leaky gut, individuals must understand how it links to their immune system. You may visit Healthcanal.com to learn more.
Basics of a Leaky Gut
The most basic and important thing that one must consider about a leaky gut is its symptoms. The digestive issue is known as the most common symptom of a leaky gut. People may experience digestive problems like bloating, diarrhea, constipation, nausea, etc. when they intake certain foods. Sometimes you may even get allergic to certain types of foods and hence should avoid such foods and their ingredients.
If you cannot understand the symptoms well by yourself, you may take the advice of an expert. Taking the advice of an expert professional can help you understand your disease better and get the right treatment.
The Basics of Autoimmune Diseases
Autoimmune diseases cause your immune system to attack your body mistakenly. Normally the immune system guards your body against bacteria and viruses. The human body immune system can also make the difference between your body cells and foreign cells. But in the case of autoimmune disease, your body’s immune system mistakenly attacks parts of your body like joints and skin. The protein named autoantibodies is released by the immune system to attack your own body’s healthy cells.
The common symptoms of this condition are like feeling tired as their bodies do not produce enough hormones. On the other hand, some people may feel fatigued because they keep waking up in the night due to their condition. To better understand your condition, you must talk to a health expert and discuss any unusual experiences you are facing. You should be more careful if you have a family history of autoimmune disease.
Leaky Gut and Autoimmune Disease Connection
The gut problem is caused when your intestinal walls get loosened. As a result, more particles can move through the gut, causing bacteria to move through. The particles thus move through the gut to the bloodstream. When these particles move through other parts of your body, the immune system naturally sends cells to fight back the unidentified particles. Thus, resulting in an autoimmune condition.
The worst part of this condition is that it may cause inflammation, swelling, and worsening of the condition with time as the immune system may think that it needs to do, even more, hence leading your body to attack itself. In addition, the immune system fails to identify the healthy cells and particles with that of the unhealthy particles moving through your body will unwillingly attack the healthy organs and cells in your body. Which further requires more time and care to be treated.
How to Get a Healthier Gut?
The best way of getting a healthier gut is to change your diet and exclude the inflammatory foods and may cause digestion problems. Although most people wait for the symptoms to occur and then think of changing their diet plan. But, it is better to change your diet and include mostly healthy foods in your diet to avoid any health complications. Among the most common foods that you must prevent to avoid gut problems are, processed foods, alcohol, foods that you are allergic to and certain medicines. It is often found that patients’ condition improves significantly once they start eating healthy foods.
4 Major Causes of a Leaky Gut Causing Autoimmune Disease
The first and the most common cause of developing a leaky gut is the wrong diet processed with junk foods. A few of our diet components, like gluten, can trigger the release of a chemical zonulin, which further loosens the tight gut lining. Dairy products too can cause health issues due to the casein protein and lactose present in it. There are other multiple toxins like caffeine, alcohol, refined fats and sugar, preservatives, artificial sweeteners, etc., that can cause serious damage to the gut lining.
Any infection or growth of the virus, bacteria, parasite, etc., in the GI tract, can cause inflammation and is also harmful to the gut lining.
We are exposed to various toxins every single day. There are some toxins that we are aware of. But there are other toxins that we don’t consider to be toxins. Some examples of such toxins are antibiotics, medications, alcohol, preservatives, BPA (a commonly used chemical for food processing), etc. these toxins can pass through the bloodstream and cause inflammation. Also, common pesticides used on produce can compromise your stomach lining, making you more susceptible to leaky gut.
Stress and depression severely affect the digestive system by loosening the gut lining and increasing intestinal permeability. It causes a loop where stress will cause a leaky gut and a leaky gut, leading to mental health issues. The inflammation in the GI tract can loosen the blood-brain barrier.
It’s All In the Gut
While we might not think about it, our gut plays a huge role in our overall health. Not only can digestive problems cause you pain and discomfort, but left untreated, they can also trigger autoimmune responses from your body. The best thing you can do to maintain a healthy gut (and body) is to avoid inflammatory foods, give your gut the support it needs to rebuild and talk to a doctor about your specific concerns.
You might also be interested in: Gut Health 101 [And How It Can Change Your Day-To-Day Life]