Leaky gut syndrome (LGS) is an increasingly pervasive health disorder in Western societies. It occurs when the lining of the small intestine becomes excessively permeable (develops “holes”), and as such, leads to the crossover of toxins, pathogens, and undigested food particles into the bloodstream. Once these foreign substances crossover, the immune system attacks them by creating inflammation. When the inflammation becomes chronic and systemic, there is a serious threat to health. Eventually, the immune system begins attacking healthy cells in the body, not just the foreign substances, by creating autoantibodies against one’s own tissues. The result is autoimmune and other chronic health conditions. Research has linked LGS to Alzheimer’s disease, autism, Crohn’s, diabetes, fibromyalgia, IBS, multiple sclerosis, and other autoimmune conditions.
There are many reasons why an individual may develop a leaky gut. The key contributors to LGS include:
- Chemical additives
- Foods with antibiotic residues
- Genetically modified organism (GMO) foods
- Glyphosate (an herbicide) – contaminated foods
- Pain medications
- Pesticide-contaminated foods
- Processed foods
- Sugar and refined carbohydrates
Gut inflammation, commonly associated with LGS, may negatively affect the body’s ability to produce immunoglobulin A (IgA) as well. Without IgA, pathogens can enter the bloodstream and move throughout the body. This increases the likelihood of an overstimulated immune system, along with the risk that pathogens will reach the liver and prevent the liver from performing its detoxification functions.
LGS frequently goes undiagnosed because many physicians and specialists are unaware of the condition and the symptoms can be vague. Thus, it is paramount for individuals to understand the warning signs associated with LGS, learn all they can, and seek effective treatment.
The warning symptoms of LGS include:
- Chronic Fatigue: A recent study indicated chronic fatigue may be linked to a person’s intestinal bacteria. In the study, researchers found a leaky gut due to intestinal problems can let harmful bacteria into a person’s bloodstream, triggering an immune response that causes chronic fatigue symptoms to worsen.
- Headaches: Inflammation of tissue and toxin build-up in the body may result in headaches.
- Skin Rashes: Oftentimes, skin rashes develop as the body tries to eliminate toxins through skin perforations. If the body is unable to remove toxins, skin rashes may escalate over time.
- Chronic Constipation and Diarrhea: If an individual’s intestinal walls become inflamed, he or she may experience chronic constipation and diarrhea, along with bloating and gas.
- Food Sensitivities: If a person starts to develop food sensitivities, this may be a sign that the body is forming antibodies based on this individual’s diet.
- Nutritional Deficiencies: A person may suffer nutritional deficiencies if his or her body lacks sufficient vitamins and minerals due to improper breakdown of food in the intestines and insufficient nutrient uptake.
- Anxiety and Depression: Studies have shown LGS is a strong contributor to anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders.
Whether or not your healthcare provider is knowledgeable about LGS, if YOU recognize the symptoms, there are self-care steps you can take to help improve your health. First and foremost is the inclusion of bovine colostrum to help repair your leaky gut.
How Does Bovine Colostrum Help People Address LGS Symptoms?
If you experience painful gut symptoms, your doctor may have prescribed a course of antibiotics or you may have taken an over-the-counter pain reliever. Unfortunately, antibiotics and pain medications may actually do more harm than good.
Antibiotics to treat gut-based pathogens help destroy “bad” bacteria in the body. At the same time, antibiotics eliminate “good” bacteria; these bacteria help keep the gut healthy and functioning properly. In this instance, strong and drug-resistant bacteria may begin to colonize, resulting more health problems. Bacteria and their toxins also may penetrate the permeable gut lining and access the bloodstream, causing a gut infection to become a systemic infection (i.e., sepsis).
Pain medications, whether over-the-counter NSAIDS or prescription opioids, can irritate (“eat away”) the gut lining and make it more permeable. Ongoing use of these medications can do serious damage, even causing internal bleeding and death.
Research indicates bovine (cow) colostrum is one of the most effective ways to correct LGS. In fact, bovine colostrum features a combination of immune modulators and growth factors that help the body balance the gut microbiome and heal the GI lining.
Bovine colostrum contains up to 40 times more immune-modulating factors than human colostrum. These have been shown to accelerate healing and recovery from infection.
Bovine colostrum contains these immune modulators:
- Cytokines: Cell signaling molecules that aid in cell communication to improve immune response. The cytokines in bovine colostrum drive the movement of cells toward inflammation sites, thereby speeding up treatment of infection and trauma in the body.
- Immunoglobulins: Glycoprotein molecules created by plasma cells. The immunoglobulins in colostrum recognize and bind bacteria, viruses, and other antigens and destroy these pathogens.
- Lactoferrin: A naturally occurring protein found in bodily fluids and milk. The lactoferrin in colostrum acts as a powerful antimicrobial and antiviral and destroys bacteria by binding free iron, so that the pathogens cannot replicate. It also penetrates the cell walls of bacteria, causing them to burst.
- Proline-Rich Polypeptides (PRPs): Small chains of amino acids. The PRPs in colostrum help the thymus gland initiate and balance the immune response. Additionally, PRPs stimulate the activity of natural killer (NK) cells that attack and destroy pathogens. PRPs can stimulate an underactive immune system or tone-down an overactive immune system depending on the body’s specific need.
The growth factors in bovine colostrum help repair damage to the intestinal lining and restore gut integrity. Also, they help the body digest food, eliminate waste, produce B vitamins, and limit the risk of gut-based infection. Growth factors even help normalize the gut ecology to improve the overall effectiveness of assorted dietary, herbal, homeopathic, and lifestyle treatments.
Powdered bovine colostrum has been shown to be effective for people of all ages. The recommended dosage is two teaspoons combined with water at least 30 minutes before eating meals and one hour prior to bedtime. The results of bovine colostrum supplementation usually become apparent within about 30 days, and regular use is required to maintain a healthy gut.
For those who experience LGS, Colostrum-LD® may provide a long-term solution to a leaky gut. Colostrum-LD® is the only bovine colostrum product that is clinically proven to heal and prevent LGS. Unlike other cow colostrum products, Colostrum-LD® features a liposomal enhanced delivery system that allows colostrum to instantly dissolve in liquids and bypass digestion in the stomach. This ensures colostrum’s healing components are transported through the bowel wall, will circulate throughout the body, and remains bioavailable at the cellular level for maximum effectiveness.