Gut Health

How to Heal Leaky Gut & Candida Overgrowth

How to Heal Leaky Gut & Candida Overgrowth

Leaky Gut Syndrome has become a more commonly addressed health condition, but while many people have heard of Leaky Gut, not so many people actually understand what this condition is, how it effects the body, what causes it, or how they can treat it. We are going to cover all of this in this article.

 

What Is Leaky Gut Syndrome?

 

Leaky Gut Syndrome is a serious and debilitating condition that is often linked to other conditions that effect the gut, such as Candida overgrowth, Crohn’s disease, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), ulcerative colitis and celiac disease.

 

Basically, Leaky Gut Syndrome is the inflammation and weakening of the intestinal walls—and this can occur for a number of reasons. The lining of the gut is naturally permeable, as this is what allows nutrients to pass from food into the bloodstream. What Leaky Gut actually refers to is not that the gut is permeable, but that there is an increased gut permeability that allows various substances to pass through the intestinal wall. Although the gut walls are supposed to allow a certain amount of nutrients through into the bloodstream, it becomes an issue when toxins and other harmful substances gets through the gut walls.

 

Health Conditions Associated with Leaky Gut Syndrome

 

If you suffer from Leaky Gut Syndrome, there are many different health conditions that can develop. Not all of these will occur, but any one of them can when your gut permeability is increased and toxins and undigested foods are allowed to enter your bloodstream:

  • Allergies
  • Acute inflammation
  • Autoimmune disease (lupus, multiple sclerosis, Type I diabetes, Hashimoto’s)
  • Celiac disease
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Chronic inflammatory conditions (such as arthritis)
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Food Intolerances
  • Frequent infections
  • Gastric ulcers
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Inflammatory bowel diseases (Crohn’s, ulcerative colitis)
  • Obesity-related metabolic diseases (fatty liver, Type II diabetes, heart disease)
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO)
  • Thyroid disorders

 

What Causes Leaky Gut Syndrome?

 

There is not one specific cause of Leaky Gut Syndrome, as Leaky Gut Syndrome is more of an effect that happens as the result of another condition. It is the inflammation and weakening of the intestinal walls, and this can be caused by a number of things.

 

Very often, however, Leaky Gut Syndrome is the result of a candida overgrowth. Leaky Gut and Candida often go hand-in-hand. Candida are a type of yeast that naturally live in the gut. Their populations usually stay at levels that cause us no harm, and are kept in balance by healthy bacteria in the gut. When gut bacteria are harmed, due to dietary or lifestyle factors (such as stress, antibiotics, alcohol, processed foods, etc.) it allows Candida populations to grow beyond healthy levels. These yeasts then invade other parts of the body and lead to an infection.

 

The most common type of Candida that causes infection is Candida albicans. Candida infections have numerous symptoms, and are often hard to detect. One of the major issues caused by a Candida infection, however, is gut inflammation and Leaky Gut Syndrome. 

 

When Candida cells begin to grow hyphae – the long branches that grow out of the fungus – they can invade the cells in your intestinal lining, creating inflammation and permeating the membrane that prevents harmful substances from leaking out. This can wreak havoc on your gut.

 

If these openings become too large, they allow all kinds of toxins and undigested food particles to pass from your gut into your bloodstream. Because these particles are not meant to be in the blood, the immune cells in your blood quickly identify them as foreign substances, and as a result, these immune cells alert your body that there is a pathogen in the body.

 

Your body’s immune system then responds by acting to neutralize what it perceives as a threat to your health. It does this in the same way it neutralizes other threats like bacteria and viruses—by ‘attacking’ the invader. This can lead to substantial inflammation and damage to the surrounding tissues. While this immune response is meant to protect you, it also causes systemic inflammation.

 

The immune system functions by attacking pathogens and remembering all of the pathogens it has fought in order to release antibodies that protect from those pathogens in the future. It is really an incredible feat of the body’s intelligence.

 

However, if your immune system has neutralized and eliminated the “invading” particles of undigested food in your blood, it remembers exactly what they were, and it remembers them as the threat that your immune cells marked them as. This means that the next time you eat the food that was mistakenly seen as a pathogen, your body (specifically your immune system) is likely to have a reaction to it. This is the underlying cause behind many food allergies.

 

The health of your intestinal lining is so important, and Candida can cause serious damage to your gut lining. This is why it is important to clear a Candida infection as soon as possible. Unfortunately, though, Candida infections are often very difficult to treat.

 

Candida Cleanse Protocol

 

To treat Leaky Gut Syndrome, it is recommended to first treat a Candida infection, as this is more often than not the primary cause of Leaky Gut. To treat a Candida infection can be challenging, and requires discipline and commitment. The protocol, however, is fairly simple:

 

  • Step 1: Follow an anti-Candida diet. The anti-Candida diet, sometimes referred to as the “Candida Diet,” is a low-sugar, anti-inflammatory diet that eliminates added sugars, gluten, alcohol, and foods that can damage gut health. Generally speaking, the candida diet removes all sources of flour, sugar, and yeast from your diet and encourages lean proteins, healthy fats, low starch vegetables, non-glutinous grains, some low sugar fruits, some dairy products, and fermented foods, as well as some herbs and supplements to encourage the process. This diet is a type of candida cleanse—a way to use foods to cleanse the body of candida overgrowth and restore balance to the gut microbiome. Candida use sugar as a primary food source, so the anti-Candida diet largely involves cutting back on sugar, and cutting out all forms of processed sugar. This starves and weakens the Candida so that they stop growing and are more easily killed with antifungal herbs and foods. You can read more about the anti-Candida diet in our article “Candida Detox Diet: Anti-Candida Foods.”

 

  • Step 2: Kill the Candida with Antifungal Herbs & Antifungal Foods. The anti-Candida diet weakens the Candida yeast and prevents them from growing. Anti-Fungal herbs, foods, and supplements target and kill the Candida to reduce their population. We at Zuma have developed our Candida Cleanse tonic for this purpose, and it includes 7 of the most potent anti-Candida herbs in the world: Oregon Grape Root, Goldenseal Root, Grapeseed Extract, Echinacea, Cloves, Ginger, & Ginseng. This formula contains therapeutic extracts of these wild-crafted herbs in a liquid extract form, which means maximum bioavailability, and maximum effectiveness.

 

  • Step 3: Supplement with the Right Probiotics. The final step in a Candida cleanse protocol is to repopulate the gut with beneficial bacteria through supplementing with a high-quality probiotic. Candida are kept under control by beneficial bacteria in the gut. The ideal balance of gut bacteria is 90% good and 10% bad bacteria, but most people are out of balance due to poor dietary and lifestyle factors, and have the inverse ratio of 10% good bacteria and 90% bad bacteria. This creates an environment in the gut that allows Candida to thrive. To keep Candida populations under control after a cleanse, it is recommended to supplement with a probiotic for a few months. Our Zuma Nutrition Multi-Strain Probiotic features 30 billion culture forming units (CFUs) and eight unique strains that promote the right ratio of gut bacteria, helping to keep Candida populations under control.

 

Exactly how long one should follow this protocol depends on the severity of their Candida infection. Generally, it is recommended to follow it for at least 90 days, but perhaps longer if the infection has not cleared and symptoms of Candida (link article) still remain.

 

Leaky Gut Protocol

 

The anti-Candida diet is a major step in how to heal leaky gut and Candida. As the two conditions are so linked together, how to cure leaky gut and candida involves a similar process. By clearing the Candida infection, adding gut-healing foods and probiotics in your diet, and taking time to relax and de-stress, you are well on your way to fully repairing your intestinal lining. To improve gut health and recover from leaky gut:

 

  • Step 1: Remove the Foods and Lifestyle Factors That Damaged Your Gut Lining. Leaky Gut is characterized by inflammation of the intestinal wall, so it is important that you cut out all inflammatory foods (processed foods, sugar, alcohol, foods with added sugars and chemicals, foods you are allergic to, produce grown with pesticides, gluten, dairy). Be sure to include plenty of fiber in your diet as well and aim to eat only organic foods. An anti-inflammatory diet is also highly recommended. Add anti-inflammatory foods like turmeric, berries, and green tea to your diet.

 

  • Step 2: Repair the Gut Lining. To heal Leaky Gut, you will want to focus on repairing the gut lining. Your body will naturally repair it in time if given the right nutrients to do so, but the process can be significantly sped up with certain key nutrients. A significant part of the gut lining is composed of the collagen protein. Building your collagen can help restore your gut lining, but don’t think this means to take a collagen drink or a standard collagen supplement. The truth is, most collagen supplements don’t work because they contain animal collagen, which is the collagen molecule in its whole form. The collagen molecule is very large and very difficult for the body to absorb in its whole form. Instead, you will want to focus on consuming the proper dosages of the nutrients needed to help your body synthesize its own collagen, as it has always done. We made this easy with our Collagen Precursor Packs. They contain the main nutrients you need to build collagen, in the right doses needed, and are assorted into convenient daily packs.

 

  • Step 3: Restore the Gut Microbiome with Probiotics. Similar to step 3 of the Candida Cleanse Protocol. You will want to supplement with probiotics daily. After experiencing any serious damage to your gut, it is recommended to stay on a probiotic supplement for a while to ensure that gut health is restored. But probiotics alone won’t do it, you also need to focus on following a healthy diet and lifestyle.

 

Summary

 

Leaky Gut Syndrome is a serious and debilitating condition that is often linked to other conditions that effect the gut, such as Candida overgrowth, Crohn’s disease, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), ulcerative colitis and celiac disease.

 

Essentially, Leaky Gut Syndrome is the inflammation and weakening of the intestinal walls. The lining of the gut is naturally permeable, as this is what allows nutrients to pass from food into the bloodstream. What Leaky Gut actually refers to is not that the gut is permeable, but that there is an increased gut permeability that allows various substances to pass through the intestinal wall. Although the gut walls are supposed to allow a certain amount of nutrients through into the bloodstream, it becomes an issue when toxins and other harmful substances gets through the gut walls.

 

There is not one specific cause of Leaky Gut Syndrome, as Leaky Gut Syndrome is more of an effect that happens as the result of another condition. It is the inflammation and weakening of the intestinal walls, and this can be caused by a number of things. Very often, however, Leaky Gut Syndrome is the result of a Candida overgrowth.

 

Candida are a type of yeast that naturally live in the gut. Their populations usually stay at levels that cause us no harm, and are kept in balance by healthy bacteria in the gut. When gut bacteria are harmed, due to dietary or lifestyle factors (such as stress, antibiotics, alcohol, processed foods, etc.) it allows Candida populations to grow beyond healthy levels. These yeasts then invade other parts of the body and lead to an infection.

 

When Candida cells begin to grow hyphae – the long branches that grow out of the fungus – they can invade the cells in your intestinal lining, creating inflammation and permeating the membrane that prevents harmful substances from leaking out. This can wreak havoc on your gut.

 

To treat Leaky Gut Syndrome, it is recommended to first treat a Candida infection, as this is more often than not the primary cause of Leaky Gut. To treat a Candida infection can be challenging, and requires discipline and commitment. The protocol, however, is fairly simple and involves following an anti-Candida diet, killing Candida with antifungal herbs and foods, and recolonizing the gut with probiotics.

 

As your Candida clears up, you should find that your Leaky Gut Syndrome repairs itself too. You can additionally focus on healing your Leaky Gut by removing the foods and lifestyle factors that damage your gut lining, repairing the gut lining, and restoring the gut microbiome with beneficial bacteria.

 

Leaky Gut Syndrome is a serious condition that can cause many health issues. It is important to treat it as soon as possible, and often, this means to focus on ridding the body of Candida and strengthening the health of your gut microbiome.

 

 

 

References

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6790068/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6996528/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5440529/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23545353/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2803610/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK560624/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3708393/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6126409/
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31215785/

Products mentioned in this post

Candida Cleanse Tonic

Candida Cleanse Tonic

$49.95

Anti Fungal, Gut Health, Detoxification

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