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Leaky gut syndrome

Food intolerance is caused by leaky gut syndrome due to inflammatory changes in the lining of the intestine that enable allergic particles of food to pass through the gut wall and cause the release of inflammatory chemicals (cytokines and histamines). These cause symptoms such as colic, migraine and dermatitis. Leaky gut syndrome is also known as dysbiosis from ancient Greek dys (bad) and bios (life).


Food intolerance can be implicated in Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, rheumatoid arthritis, migraine and dermatitis. For example, a child with eczema may be sensitive to eggs and/or milk. Migraine can be associated with sensitivity to milk, wheat, coffee and chocolate and with sensitivity to tyramine rich foods such as cheese and red wine. Premenstrual fluid retention can be made worse by wheat, yeast, salt and milk. Intestinal candidiasis (fungal infection) is associated with intolerance to yeast and sugar (1).


Mental illness can be associated with intolerances to certain foods such as milk, eggs, coffee and white flour (2). 


While it is helpful to identify and exclude poorly tolerated foods, it is also important to treat the associated leaky gut syndrome. Causes of leaky gut syndrome Include inflammatory bacteria, fungi (candida) and microparasites (e.g. Giardia Lamblia). Dental mercury poisoning is a major underlying cause of dysbiosis and when implicated should be treated.

At this clinic, bacterial dysbiosis is treated with probiotics and prebiotics selected under vegatest control. Probiotics are supplements of healthy intestinal microflora such as acidophilus and prebiotics are supplements of anti-inflammatory soluble microfibre such as inulin. Fungus and microparasite infections are also identified treated naturopathically.


  1. Nutritional Medicine by Dr Stephen Davies and Dr Alan Stewart. Pan Books. ISBN 0 330 28833 4, 1987.

  2. NOT ALL IN THE MIND. Dr Richard Mackarness. Pan Books. 1976. ISBN 0 330 24592 9.

If you are suffering from Food Intolerances, Vegatesting may be able to help. To book a consultation please call Dr. Bourne on 020 8632 0119 or 07717 833702.

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