Leaky Gut Syndrome can Contribute to Chronic Diseases
Your body’s immune system is designed to defend you from a wide variety of microbial, outside invaders, and the diseases that they cause. But sometimes, the very system that exists to protect you can turn against you in a devastating betrayal from within. There’s a long and growing list of autoimmune diseases – currently around 80, with approximately another 40 that are suspected to have autoimmune components. These are conditions that result, either directly or partly, from attacks by the autoimmune system against healthy tissue in the human body. And they are fall within the top ten causes of death in the world. These diseases include, among many others, Systematic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE), Multiple Sclerosis (MS), Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), Type 1 Diabetes and psoriasis and many more.
Most of these diseases are not yet fully understood. And their causes are complex, which means there are many contributing factors. In most cases, people who suffer from these diseases are genetically predisposed to them. However, recent research has identified one unexpected factor which may have a major effect on future treatments. That factor is an unbalanced gut microbiome. Thanks to recent research, scientists have discovered that some specific bacteria can trigger immune responses from the body.
Gut bacteria, as long as they stay where they belong, are harmless. In fact, a lot of your normal flora is actually good for you. They help to break down certain carbohydrates and produce certain vitamins that we couldn’t produce on our own. But when your gut is unbalanced, you can experience “Leaky Gut Syndrome.” That’s a condition in which a compromised digestive lining may allow bacteria and other contaminants to enter the bloodstream, where they don’t belong. And this is where things start to go wrong.
Some gut bacteria, once they’ve left their proper home in the intestines, can move to the lymph nodes, liver and spleen. They can take up residence in organs and glands, where they can wreak havoc on your autoimmune functions. In this way, they can trigger a whole host of malfunctions which can result in serious autoimmune diseases.
Since we know that SLE, MS, RA, IBD, UC and other diseases are autoimmune conditions, it becomes a logical conclusion that leaky gut can certainly contribute to their onset.
But leaky gut, just like these other diseases, is a lifestyle condition. It isn’t something that pops up suddenly and causes a major health crisis. In most cases, it comes from unhealthy choices, and it develops over time. And chronic conditions have to be managed. That means that taking your gut health seriously over the long term is an important part of preventing serious autoimmune conditions later in life.