Your gut influences many different processes in your body. One of those is your immune system. As we’ve written about before, the bacteria within your gut, called your gut microbiome, helps your body perform many functions. From digestion to immune system boosting, those little organisms do a lot for our bodies!
For those who suffer from allergies, the symptoms you experience when you encounter something you’re allergic to are actually your immune system overreacting by producing antibodies that attack the allergen. But allergy symptoms could be a more telling sign – about your digestive system. It could be a sign of leaky gut syndrome.
Leaky Gut Syndrome
Leaky gut syndrome is kind of a gray area in medicine but it happens when tight junctions in your gut stop working properly and your intestines become permeable. Intestinal permeability (aka leaky gut) means that things like toxins and undigested food particles can escape from your intestines and travel throughout your body via your bloodstream.
As of now, we don’t really know the cause of leaky gut syndrome but we do know that it can contribute to allergy symptoms.
Allergies and your Gut
So what does a leaky gut have to do with allergies? Your gut is where bacteria meets your immune system. In fact, a large percentage of your immune system is in your GI tract. When toxins and other bacteria start leaking out of your gut, they can make their way into your bloodstream. This causes your immune system to launch an attack on the foreign objects, which can cause allergy symptoms and inflammation throughout the body.
Gut Health Tips
If you have seasonal allergies, here are some tips to keep your gut healthy and reduce your symptoms.
- Take probiotics
- Eat fermented foods
- Avoid foods that can upset the microbiome in your stomach (sugar, gluten, GMO foods)
- Get plenty of sleep, water, and exercise
If you think you may suffer from leaky gut syndrome or have questions about your gut health, give us a call! If you’re interested in learning more about your microbiome, stay tuned to our Facebook page. Dr. Savita Srivastava, Director of Women’s Digestive Wellness
and Physician at Gastrointestinal Specialists does talks in the community throughout the year on this and similar topics.