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dr oz and leaky gut syndrome



Steve Buissinne – Sedgefield/South Africa – Pixabay

A few days ago I got an email from Genova Labs saying that Dr. Oz was running a program on Leaky Gut Syndrome.  My wife recorded it yesterday afternoon, and we watched it yesterday evening. I would highly recommend it to anyone with a pulse.  The episode started out by telling the story of a family whose little son was diagnosed with JRA (Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis), a common but debilitating Autoimmune Disease.

As the disease progressed, the boy went from taking anti-inflammatory medications to control his RA symptoms, to taking the popular chemotherapy drug commonly prescribed for RA (HERE), Methotrexate.  As the child’s health continued to deteriorate, the child’s mother sought out alternatives to the the medical care he was receiving that obviously was not working.  After being diagnosed with something known as “LEAKY GUT SYNDROME” by an alternative practitioner, radical changes were made in the boy’s diet (GAPS, which is very similar to PALEO).  Within six weeks the child was pain free, normal, and off his meds.  Watch the show!

Dr. Oz seemed genuinely ticked off about the way the medical community handled this situation — and described it as being the norm —- something that is happening every day all over America (I can second that motion).  He further described the medical profession as having a far too-narrow focus, and hell bent on prescribing DRUGS no matter the problem.  In fact, he said that the relationship between the medical community and CAM (Complimentary and Alternative Medicine) has become a “Civil War” in this country, largely due to the medical community’s inability to pick up on new ideas that do not involve drugs or surgery.  Like one of the child’s original doctor’s said (loosely paraphrased), “I’ve treated thousands of patients with drugs; changes in diet never make a difference“.   This itself begs the question of how much the average doctor really knows about nutrition (HERE)?  But I regress.

There are a couple of things I want to expound upon and clarify about the program — a program that was mostly very accurate and extremely well done.    My biggest beef was probably the fact that Doctor Oz referred to Leaky Gut Syndrome as a “theory“.  It is not a theory.  It is a cold, hard, medical fact. There are well over 10,000 peer-reviewed medical studies on Leaky Gut Syndrome.  Only “Leaky Gut” is not what the medical community calls it.  They refer to it as “Increased Intestinal Permeability” (or an array of others such as “Gut Barrier Dysfunction,” Gut Barrier Integrity,” Intestinal Barrier System,” etc, etc, etc).  Simply go to Pub Med and start looking.
Leaky Gut Syndrome (Increased Intestinal Permeability) is a condition where INFLAMMATION, driven by things like DYSBIOSIS (overgrowths of bad bacteria, H. PYLORI, YEAST / FUNGUS, etc), Hypochlorhydria (decreased stomach acid or the use of antacids and PPI DRUGS), ANTIBIOTICS, GLUTEN or other food sensitivities, ANTI-INFLAMMATORY MEDICATIONS (and HERE), PARASITES, MERCURY, ALUMINUM, or any number of other factors, wreak havoc on overall health.  In people with ‘Leaky Gut’, the Inflammation makes the “tight” junctions between the cells of the small intestine, “loose”.  Thus, the Gut is said to become “leaky”.  

As you might imagine, a Leaky Gut allows all sorts of too-large particles to pass through the cellular membrane and be absorbed into the blood stream.  Once in the blood stream, the body recognizes these entities as foreign invaders and begins creating antibodies and Immune System responses against them.  The early result is such a wide array of symptoms, it literally boggles the mind. Unfortunately, the longer-term consequence is usually AUTOIMMUNITY.  (HERE is a list of the most common Autoimmune Diseases, as well as the numbers of Americans with each particular disease.  I promise you’ll be shocked.)

I am not going to belabor the point, but the subject of Dr. Oz’s program is a big enough deal that a few years ago (when I was doing more FUNCTIONAL MEDICINE), I actually created a website about the relationship between the Immune System, the Endocrine System (BLOOD SUGAR, ADRENAL GLANDS, SEX HORMONES, etc) and The Gut.  The site was called ENDOGUT, which is now incorporated into this site as a huge blog post.  I have a number of smaller blog posts on the subject as well.  Just understand that a Leaky Gut can almost always be tied back to a crappy diet and / or over-medication. 
If you are chronically sick or SERIOUSLY OVERWEIGHT (they often times go hand in hand), please take a few minutes to look at some of the links on this page.  I promise that once you get over the initial shock, you will begin to see the path that will lead you back to health —- a path that gets easier, the longer you follow it.



How do you go about plugging the leaks in your gut?  For starters, you may want to be tested.  The Leaky Gut test used on Dr. Oz’s program was a simple urine test from Genova Labs.  However, I feel that the blood test by Cyrex Labs is probably a superior test (there are a couple breath tests out there as well).  Either way, allow me to throw a few bones your way and provide you with some suggestions for kicking Leaky Gut Syndrome.  Understand that these are overarching principles.  Although you may very well require some specialized testing, you cannot go wrong following this advice.  Furthermore, this is the starting point for almost any protocol you find for beating Leaky Gut.

  • EAT LOW CARB:  When it comes to diet, we all know to CONTROL BLOOD SUGAR.  Sure; many people think they are controlling blood sugar because their blood test tells them so.  It is not that the blood test is incorrect, it is frequently being misinterpreted (HERE).  LOW CARB or even KETOGENIC diets are the way to control blood sugar (particularly HYPOGLYCEMIA).  More specifically, the PALEO DIET is the best way to control blood sugar and cut the most commonly reactive foods from the diet (most of which are GRAINS). Just be aware that GLUTEN and its “CROSS-REACTORS” are almost always involved in Leaky Gut Syndrome.  The Paleo Diet nixes them all!


  • EAT WHOLE FOODS OR TAKE WHOLE FOOD SUPPLEMENTS:  There is a reason that WHOLE FOOD NUTRITION makes sense.  Learn more about the difference between Synthetic Nutritional Supplements and Whole Food Nutritional Supplements (HERE is one example of many).  By the way, if you decide to go Gluten Free (if you have Leaky Gut, it is critical that you do so), do not attempt to do so without first reading THIS POST on how to do it correctly.  One more thing; I realize that not everyone who is seriously overweight has a Leaky Gut.  But most do.  If you have Leaky Gut and are overweight, you’ll never LOSE THE WEIGHT and keep it off without first fixing getting a handle on GUT HEALTH.


  • GET PLENTY OF OMEGA-3’S AND AVOID HARMFUL FATS:  Be warned that not all Omega Three Fatty Acids are alike.  This is why I only recommend PHARMACEUTICAL GRADE FISH OIL as far as fish oil supplements go. As far as harmful fats are concerned, HERE is the worst.  Do not be conned into thinking that THIS is a bad fat.


  • AVOID TRANS FATS:  If you don’t have the scoop on TRANS FATS, you are missing the boat on health.  Trans fats actually create “stupid cell membranes” that tend to lose their natural “barrier” characteristics


  • RESTORE THE GUT’S GOOD BACTERIA:  Yes; eat fermented foods.  Yes; take a good PROBIOTIC.  Be aware that you may have to go beyond this.   As crazy as it sounds, Dysbiosis-caused autoimmunity is now being treated with FECES TRANSPLANTS in certain parts of the world.  If you do not fix your gut, you will never get healthy.  This is because peer-reviewed research says that a whopping 80% of the body’s entire Immune System resides in the Gut (HERE).


  • GET SOME EXERCISE:  Some of you will only be able to do a little bit of walking or stretching.  That is OK for now.  HERE is where we want you headed as your health improves. 


  • GET HAPPY:  DEPRESSION is a bummer — literally.  Understanding it and fixing it without drugs cannot be accomplished without understanding Gut Health (90% of your “Happy Neurotransmitter” — Serotonin — is made in the Gut).  It seems that Dr. Oz agrees with me.  To understand the relationship between Antibiotics and Depression, click THIS LINK, scroll down a bit, and start reading.  According to the most current research on the matter, you can substitute the word ‘Depression‘ for “Autism” without losing any of the article’s veracity. Oh, and if you click the first link in this bullet, you’ll see that Depression is one of the myriad of health issues caused by INFLAMMATION.


  • GET OFF THE DRUGS —- PARTICULARLY THE ANTIBIOTICS:  ANTIBIOTICS are, as I have been telling patients for over two and a half decades, one of the single biggest destroyers of health in the U.S.   And in case you were not aware, medications in general are arguably the single biggest cause of death here in America — bigger than both CANCER and heart disease (HERE).  This does not even take into account the massive harm they are doing.  Most are prescribed solely for financial reasons (HERE).

No; this list is not comprehensive.  But it is a start.  For those of you who are are serious about improving your health and your weight, you can hardly go wrong with this list.  To move to the next level, HERE it is.


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