3 lessons from healing leaky gut, SIBO and candida

My first recollection of gut problems was when I was nine years old. I would experience infrequent episodes of sharp pains in my tummy. At the time I didn’t know what it was, however, now I realise my bowel was spasming. Fast forward 15 years and my gut is still a work in progress. I honestly think it is for many people ...whether they want to admit it or not.

 

When I think about the gut, I am always reminded of the following statistics:

  • Approx 70% of our immune system is contained in the gut

  • Approx 90% of our serotonin neurotransmitters are located in the gut

It is therefore not surprising when we hear practitioners say an estimated 80% of patients with chronic illness have some form of gut impairment. I don’t know about you, but I want a strong immune system to feel healthy and be flooded with serotonin to feel incredibly happy …so I’m definitely not one to ignore my gut health.

 

 

3 Lessons from my gut journey

 

  1. Leaky Gut is not the root cause. 

It is more accurate than IBS, however, something is causing you to have a leaky gut. Some of the most common causes include:

  • Stress

  • Bacteria (e.g. SIBO) or yeast overgrowth (e.g. Candida)

  • Parasites

  • Medications (e.g. antibiotics, ibuprofen, other NSAIDS)

  • Toxic overload

  • Inflammation

  • Lack of good bacteria in your intestinal tract

 

2. Identify and treat the underlying cause before trying every gut healing protocol.

Initially I thought leaky gut was the cause of my problems. I was pumping my body with fermented foods, bone broth, probiotics and fiber rich foods. However, later I realised it was actually caused by a yeast and bacteria overgrowth, Candida and SIBO.

SIBO feeds off high fibrous foods and as the name suggests is an overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine. Therefore you have to be careful with probiotics and fermented foods etc ..it could just be adding fuel to the fire!

In hindsight, I should've rid my body of SIBO and then slowly reintroduced fodmap foods, fermented veggies, probiotics etc (which is the phase I am trialling now).

I don’t want you to get the wrong message ...there are SO many proven benefits of living foods such as kefir, sauerkraut, living strain yoghurts, kombucha etc, however, you want to make sure the timing is right for you to introduce these into your diet.

 

3. Be mindful of other sources of inflammation in your body.

In my case, practitioners were too focussed on my gut, thyroid, adrenals and chronic fatigue ...and not enough on diagnosing the reactivated Epstein Barr Virus (EBV) and Human Herpes Virus 6 (HHV-6) that is rampant in my body.

Always try to seek out an integrative doctor that looks at the whole picture and if in doubt seek out a second opinion.

 


P.S. If you liked this article, head over and follow me on Instagram @leakygut for more juicy content and inspiring images.