90% of your neurotransmitters that keep your mood stable are also found in your gut. Gut health can affect our emotional health and overall well-being.

Unfortunately, due to poor diet, chronic stress and toxic overload in our body, leaky gut syndrome has become more prevalent and reaching epidemic proportion.

What is leaky gut?

Leaky gut is a digestive condition that affects the lining of the intestines in which the bacteria, undigested matter and toxins leak through the intestinal lining into the bloodstream causing inflammation and possibly trigger a reaction from the immune system which may lead to digestive problems and other health issues.

Below are 3 ways to heal your leaky gut with healthy gut foods and supplements

#1   Eliminate foods that can cause inflammation in your gut

#2   Replenish with gut healing foods

#3   Repair your gut with supplements

#1   Eliminate foods that damage your gut

GMO (Genetically Modified Organisms) have genes from foreign DNA inserted into the recipient plant DNA or animal DNA by a bacteria or virus as a carrier. Since they have been modified to fight off bugs, GMO foods tend to be the highest in lectins, which can damage your gut walls.

The glyphosate in pesticides that are sprayed on foods also destroy the good bacteria but has no effect on pathogens like E. Coli and botulism which causes imbalance of the gut.

Gluten is one of the top leading cause for leaky gut. Gluten causes the gut cells to release a protein called, zonulin, which breaks apart the intestinal lining.

Foods containing high amounts of lectin - Lectin is found in many foods including grains, vegetables, nuts and beans. Your body will do just fine consuming lectins in small amounts but will become problematic when consumed in high amounts. If you must eat foods high in lectin, pressure cook to destroy the lectin.

If you have chronic condition, cut out all grains and slowly reintroduce to see if your symptoms improve. Foods high in lectin include:

- Grains: wheat, rice, spelt

- Legumes: lentils, kidney beans, soy, peanuts

- Vegetables: Tomatoes, eggplants, zucchini

- Fruits: Grapes, ripe banana, ripe mangoes, lychees, cherries

Unsprouted grains, nuts, seeds and beans contain lectin and also phytate, a plant chemical which blocks nutrient absorption and inflame your gut. Be sure to soak grains, seeds, nuts and beans overnight in salt to reduce phytate.

Conventional cows milk is devoid of vital enzymes, making it difficult to digest the sugar, lactose due to the pasteurization process. Also, the protein A1 casein found in conventional cows milk can be harmful to your gut. Raw dairy from goats, sheep, buffalo or A2 cows are recommended as alternatives.

Unhealthy Fats - Avoid fried foods, processed oils, margarine and butter

Processed meat - Processed meat contains nitrates and nitrites that are linked to inflammation and cancer.

Toxic foods - Ditch the processed foods, sugar, alcohol and caffeine that can damage your gut lining. Artificial sweetener promotes glucose intoleranace by altering the composition and function of your gut microbiome.

Unfiltered tap water have chemicals like fluroide and chlorine which can destroy the good bacteria in your gut. Use a shower filter and filter your drinking water.

#2   Replenish with gut healing foods

Most people have a few go-to foods for breakfast, lunch and dinner. However, it's important to eat a variety of food and not the same foods over and over again. Rotate your diet and eat 60-70% of plant-based. Most people tolerate cooked vegetables better than raw but listen to your body and do what's best.

Bone broth contains collagen and amino acids proline and glycine that can help heal your gut cell walls.

Fermented Vegetables such as kimchi and saurkraut contain probiotics and organic acids that help balance the pH in your intestines.  

Foods high in fiber - avocado, artichoke, asparagus, brussel sprouts, okra, jicama. Sprouted Seeds such as chia seeds, hemp seeds, and flaxseeds are also excellent source of fiber to support the growth of beneficial bacteria.

Foods high in resistant starch - green bananas, potatoes and white rice (cooked and cooled) contains resistant starch, a prebiotic fiber that resists digestion and is fermented by bacteria in the large intestine (colon) to produce short chain fatty acid, also called butyrate which is critical in keeping the gut lining healthy.

Coconut products work well for leaky gut because it contains medium chain fatty acids that are easier to digest than other fats. Consider coconut kefir instead of dairy kefir which contains probiotics that can help heal the gut.

Healthy fats - Consume healthy fats that are easy to digest in moderation from coconut oil and ghee can promote healing. Anti-inflammatory foods high in omega-3 fats such as grass-fed beef, buffalo, lamb and wild-caught seafood may also benefit the damage gut.

Fruits - Keep fruit intake in moderation to 1-2 servings of fruit daily in the morning and avoid any fruits later in the day. Apples and pears can be steamed to make homemade apple sauce or fruit sauce.

#3   Repair your gut with supplements

Collagen Peptides - Collagen contain amino acids and peptides that help can repair the gut lining and promote optimal gut lining health.

L-Glutamine, an essential amino acid that coats your cell wall and repels irritants, is necessary for the healing of your gut lining.

Probiotics - Re-establish a healthy gut microbiome by replenishing your gut with probiotics or beneficial bacteria such as acidophilus and bifidus. A balanced, healthy gut microbiome can help you absorb nutrients that your body need to stay healthy. Dosage differ for each person and could vary from 50 billion to 500 billion CFUs per day.

Additionally, for candida yeast infection, use Lactobacillus rhamnosus (GR-1) and Lactobacillus reuteri (RC-14) daily. Clinical study shows that GR-1 and RC-14 are effective in colonizing the vaginal microflora and able to "restore and maintain a normal urogenital flora" after 28 days of oral use. Consider Fem-Dophilus by Jarrow, a probiotic formula with GR-1 and RC-14 strains.

Digestive Enzymes - Take a full-spectrum digestive enzymes at the beginning of each meal to help improve digestion, reduce bloating and general gut pain and discomfort. Look for a full-spectrum digestive enzymes (amylase, protease, lipase, lactase) to breakdown the main food groups.

Marshmallow root is commonly used to treat stomach ulcers, diarrhea and constipation. Marshmallow root is also used to soothe and protects the gut lining and stimulate the cells that support tissue regeneration.

Shilajit is rich in fulvic acid with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties frequently used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine. A recent study found that shilajit can protect from stomach ulcers and reduce inflammation exacerbated from leaky gut.