Leaky Gut Syndrome

Nancy (not her real name) came to see me for acupuncture to treat her lupus symptoms of chronic neck and upper back pain. She had a host of other issues, too–anxiety, poor sleep, low energy, intermittent joint pain–but the neck and upper back were the worst.

When someone has pain, Chinese medicine believes that there is usually an element of stagnation present–blood stagnation, dampness causing stagnation, maybe cold causing stagnation–and we do a treatment to move that stagnation, and strengthen the patients qi so that their bodies can keep battling stagnation off of the treatment table.

When I agreed to work with Nancy, I encouraged her (actually, I practically begged her, at almost every visit) to get tested for Celiac disease and food allergies. I have seen in my clinical practice that a condition called “leaky gut syndrome” can be the cause of autoimmune diseases like lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. Leaky gut syndrome can occur when someone has an overgrowth of candida, or if they are consuming food that their body can’t tolerate. Overuse of oral antibiotics can be a factor, too, since they destroy all of the “good” bacteria in the intestines, leaving them weak and inflamed. The small intestine becomes porous and toxins leak out into the body, stimulating an autoimmune response.

Western medicine has not gotten on board with the idea that a leaky gut could have anything to do with autoimmune disease. I can’t say that it’s the only cause, but I’ve seen it in a few patients.

Nancy finally had to get allergy testing after two severe allergic reactions that sent her to the emergency room for anaphylactic shock. Her first test showed that she was allergic to at least 90 different things. No wonder she was so sick!

Food intolerances are not a part of Chinese medicine, but digestive health is believed to be one of the most important keys to well-being. People with digestive problems often have dampness, which can lead to pain. So, while we don’t have traditional explanations for a problem like leaky gut syndrome (at least not that I’ve encountered), it fits into our medical theory that problems with the intestines can make problems in the rest of the body.

To avoid another experience with anaphylactic shock, Nancy needs further testing to check for other allergenic foods. Her doctor has her eating the foods that she seems least allergic too until they can get more test results. Unfortunately for Nancy, it’s only 2 items–dairy and eggs.

It’s a difficult and depressing situation for her, and she’s hungry and getting tired of eating only eggs and dairy products. But, her pain is already starting to recede. For the first time in years, her neck is not in excruciating pain all the time. I expect that as her body detoxes (and as she is able to incorporate other foods into her diet), she will feel better than she ever has.

Jake Fratkin, and acupuncturist and naturopath in Boulder, has a great article about leaky gut syndrome. You can also go to his website here.

Dr. Andrew Weil has a brief posting here.

586 thoughts on “Leaky Gut Syndrome

  1. They replicate the worldwide attraction of our dual Entire world Heritage sectors which have been attributed to boosting delegate figures, she said.

  2. I wanted to type a small comment in order to say thanks to you for all the amazing tips you are posting at this site. My particularly long internet search has now been compensated with extremely good insight to share with my friends and classmates. I ‘d assume that most of us visitors actually are quite fortunate to live in a perfect community with very many wonderful people with very beneficial tips. I feel quite grateful to have used your entire webpages and look forward to many more exciting moments reading here. Thanks a lot once more for all the details.

  3. Hi, i think that i saw you visited my blog so i came to “return the favor”.I’m attempting to find things to improve my website!I suppose its ok to use a few of your ideas!!

  4. Hi there very nice blog!! Man .. Beautiful .. Superb .. I’ll bookmark your website and take the feeds also¡KI’m happy to find a lot of useful information right here within the submit, we need develop extra techniques in this regard, thank you for sharing. . . . . .

  5. I was just searching for this information for a while. After six hours of continuous Googleing, at last I got it in your site. I wonder what’s the lack of Google strategy that do not rank this type of informative web sites in top of the list. Generally the top web sites are full of garbage.

  6. I¡¦ll immediately grasp your rss as I can not to find your email subscription link or e-newsletter service. Do you’ve any? Kindly allow me know in order that I may subscribe. Thanks.

  7. I have recently started a site, the information you provide on this website has helped me greatly. Thank you for all of your time & work.

  8. Hello my friend! I want to say that this article is awesome, nice written and include approximately all vital infos. I would like to see extra posts like this .

  9. This awesome blog is really entertaining and besides diverting. I have chosen many helpful things out of this amazing blog. I ad love to return again and again. Thanks a bunch!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *