How to Fix a Leaky Gut? What to Eat and What Not To Eat?

heal a leaky gut
How to Fix a Leaky Gut? What to Eat and What Not To Eat?

A leaky gut occurs due to the formation of small gaps in the intestinal wall. Because of this, a person can suffer from an immune response and systemic inflammation. While there are many ways to heal this condition, the most popular one out there is to lower gut inflammation and support digestive health. If you are suffering from this condition, you should understand that you must improve your gut health.

With a correct diet, nutrients, and habits, one can improve their leaky gut as all this helps lower gut inflammation. Also, proper sleep, regular exercise, and stress reduction can help improve gut health.

To understand all this, you must first know what a leaky gut is, how you will know if you have this condition, how you can naturally heal this syndrome and things like that. So, if you are ready, let's start by understanding this health condition.

What Is A Leaky Gut Syndrome?

To understand leaky gut syndrome, you must first know this condition is not actually medically recognized. Therefore, it is often referred to as a hypothetical condition. Furthermore, it is deeply connected to intestinal permeability. Now, what is intestinal permeability? Let's learn about that.

Knowing that every person's guts are semi-permeable is vital, which means they can enter small molecules, while larger particles are not permeable. Our intestines' mucous lining can absorb nutrients and water from food and transfer them into our bodies through the bloodstream. However, some people possess more intestinal permeability, which is called hyperpermeability. This leads to the entrance of more nutrients and water, often referred to as a "leak."

Some studies suggest that people with chronic gastrointestinal diseases possess leaky guts. This, as a result, lets the larger molecules pass through, especially those that are toxic to the body. Our intestinal lining is a barrier to infectious agents and bacteria available inside our gut. When it comes to your immune system, this barrier has a major role to play.

Defining What Leaky Gut Syndrome Actually Is

The leaky gut syndrome is part of a theory that explains that gastrointestinal diseases are not the only ones that give birth to symptoms like intestinal permeability. In fact, it is believed that this is an underlying cause that can occur itself. If you have an impaired intestinal barrier, you are prone to toxins entering your bloodstream. Furthermore, these toxins may even trigger your body's inflammatory response, leading to the occurrence of multiple diseases.

While we are sure that a leaky gut or intestinal permeability is an existing condition, it's still not confirmed whether it is a disease in itself or if it can cause other health problems. Furthermore, it's currently a non-recognized medical diagnosis.

Leaky Gut Symptoms: How to Know If You Have Intestinal Permeability?

Talking about leaky gut directly, there aren't any associated symptoms. However, a condition like intestinal permeability occurs due to your intestinal lining facing an injury. And because of this, you may experience the following symptoms, including:

  • Burning feeling of ulceration in the gut
  • Diarrhea
  • Radiation therapy leading to gastrointestinal mucositis
  • Painful indigestion due to the intestinal mucosa loss
  • Bloating and gas from fermentation because of overgrown bacteria in the gut
  • Low energy, as failing to draw enough from the food

What Causes A Leaky Gut?

When there is a breach in your intestinal barrier, you may experience various problems related to your gut. In most cases, a person can suffer from a leaky gut or intestinal permeability due to the following reasons:

  • Chronic inflammatory states, like celiac disease and IBD (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)
  • Radiation therapies and chemotherapy can lead to intestinal mucosa degradation.
  • Health complications can lead to intestinal injuries, like AIDS/HIV. 
  • Chronic consumption of NSAIDs or alcohol, like ibuprofen and aspirin.
  • Food allergies can lead to an immune response to certain foods.

How to Heal a Leaky Gut Naturally? Healing a Leaky Gut With A Diet

So, do you want to heal your leaky gut naturally? As previously mentioned, no official medical diagnosis is available for this condition. And because of this reason, there is not any treatment that your doctor can recommend.

However, since this condition concerns your gut health, you can do many things to enhance your overall digestive health. The best way to achieve this is by introducing diets that contain foods that help with the beneficial gut bacteria growth. A report suggests that a group of unhealthy gut bacteria is often linked to bad health outcomes, such as cancers, chronic inflammation, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.

Here is a list of foods that you can add to your diet to heal your "leaky gut" or digestive health naturally:

  • Fruit

Add fruits like papaya, raspberries, limes, coconut, strawberries, oranges, grapes, lemon, blueberries, mandarin, kiwi, bananas, pineapple, and passion fruit into your diet.

  • Vegetables

Carrots, ginger, beetroot, broccoli, arugula, mushrooms, Swiss chard, kale, cabbage, beetroot, zucchini, and spinach.

  • Fish

Salmon, fish rich in omega-3, herring, and tuna.

  • Nuts

Raw nuts, such as almonds, peanuts, and nut-based products, like nut milk, etc.

  • Roots and Tubers

Turnips, potatoes, squash, yams, sweet potatoes, and carrots

  • Healthy Fats

Extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil, and avocado.

  • Fermented Vegetables

Miso, kimchi, tempeh, and sauerkraut

  • Meats and Eggs

Beef, eggs, chicken, turkey, and lamb.

  • Beverages

Coconut milk, kombucha, bone broth, nut milk, team and water.

  • Gluten-Free Grains

Rice (white and brown), gluten-free oats, buckwheat, sorghum, amaranth, and teff.

  • Herbs and Spices

All spices and herbs.

  • Dairy Products (Cultured)

Traditional buttermilk, yogurt, kefir, and Greek yogurt.

  • Sprouted Seeds

Flax seeds, chia seeds, sunflower seeds, etc.

One's diet must have fibrous veggies, fermented veggies, fruits, lean meats, dairy products, as well as healthy fats to attain a healthy digestive and prevent leaky gut condition.

Foods to Avoid In a Leaky Gut

Now, knowing what you should eat to have a healthy digestive system is vital. However, besides that, you must also be aware of foods you must avoid under this condition. Yes, when you have a leaky gut, you must look out for what you eat and what to avoid eating.

A few foods can promote inflammation in the body, leading to unhealthy gut bacteria growth, which is the cause of numerous chronic diseases. So, when improving gut health is your goal, you must be aware of all these things.

Here is a list of foods that may lead to damage to the healthy gut bacteria, which are also responsible for symptoms like diarrhea, bloating, and constipation:

  • Products containing wheat in them

Avoid foods like bread, couscous, cereal, pasta, wheat flour, etc., in your diet. 

  • Dairy products

Ice cream, cheese, and milk.

  • Beverages

Sugary drinks like alcohol, carbonated beverages, and other such drinks.

  • Gluten-containing grains

Oats, barley, triticale, rye, seitan, and bulgar.

  • Sauces

Hoisin sauce, salad dressings, teriyaki, and soy.

  • Processed meats

Hot dogs, deli meats, cold cuts, bacon, etc.

  • Artificial sweeteners

Saccharin, aspartame, and sucralose.

  • Baked Goods

Pies, cakes, pizza, muffins, pastries, and cookies.

  • Refined oils

Safflower oils, canola, soybean, and sunflower.

  • Junk foods

Sugary cereals, fast foods, candy bars, potato chips, etc. 

  • Snack Foods

Pretzels, crackers, popcorn, muesli bars, etc.

One's diet should be free of junk foods, artificial sweeteners, sugary beverages, alcohol, and refined oils, as all these are responsible for the growth of unhealthy gut bacteria. Also, avoid foods containing gluten and stimulants that may promote digestive symptoms.

Other Approaches to Healing a Leaky Gut

So, previously we mentioned the foods your diet should have and not in order to heal your digestive system. While having a good diet is the recommended way of treating a leaky gut, there are a few other ways you can opt for it.

Here are some alternatives or approaches which you can take if you're looking to heal your leaky gut:

Try Probiotic Supplement

One should consider having probiotics as they have beneficial bacteria, which you can normally spot in fermented foods. You can find probiotic supplements online that may help enhance gut health. This becomes more crucial if your diet cannot fulfill your body's probiotic needs. You can also consider taking Apprize Medical's personalized treatment plans, which can help your gut health greatly.

Take More Sleep

Not sleeping enough hours can lead to a bad distribution of healthy gut bacteria, which may cause enhanced intestinal permeability or leaky gut.

Stop Smoking

Smoking is the cause and risk factor for many digestive-related conditions and may promote inflammation in your digestive tract. So, instead of avoiding smoking, try to stop it completely. Quitting can increase the number of healthy bacteria and decrease the number of harmful gut bacteria.

Lower the Intake of Alcohol

A few researchers have mentioned that drinking too much alcohol may promote intestinal permeability.

Lower Stress

A person who has chronic stress can suffer damage to their healthy gut bacteria. So, to maintain the numbers of these beneficial bacteria, you must try yoga or meditation. Performing these activities daily may help reduce chronic stress or stress in general.

Sometimes, the leaky gut syndrome symptoms can result from celiac disease. Therefore, if your symptoms indicate a leaky gut, ensure you test for this other disease. 


There isn't any medically approved diagnosis for leaky gut, and this hypothetical condition is related to enhance intestinal permeability. If your question was how to fix a leaky gut, we have already mentioned the diet and lifestyle changes you need to make to enhance your gut health. 

To fight a leaky gut, you should consider having foods that increase healthy gut bacteria amounts, such as fruits, veggies, lean meats, healthy fats, and dairy products. Other than that, make sure to avoid refined and processed junk foods. Also, lower stress, take probiotic supplements, stop smoking, limit alcohol and NSAID use, and get sufficient sleep.

Schedule a meeting with Apprize Medical professionals if you want relief from your leaky gut syndrome symptoms. We help you by making personalized nutrition plans, so your body can naturally heal. Our plans focus on enhancing your gut health and helping your body fight off various diseases caused due to a weak gut. Call us at +1-305-851-2132 or use our booking page to schedule a meeting with our doctors.