Leaky Gut Diet
This diet is ideal for patients with autoimmune diseases. It is important to eat regularly and to no get to a point of getting overly hungry—stabilizing blood sugar remains a primary aim to avoid the stress of low blood sugar.
Foods to Avoid
Foods to Eat
When confronted with this diet the fist thing people ask is what can they eat. In fact you’ll be eating the way people ate for most of human history—there’s plenty of food that doesn’t come from a factory or an industrialized farm.
Why No Grains or Legumes?
Some people with Hashimoto’s or Grave's give up gluten and feel only marginally better. In these cases a diet free of grains, starchy vegetables, legumes, and most sweeteners may be necessary. This type of diet, called a monosaccharide (single sugar) diet, is more commonly known today as the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) diet, or the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD). It is based on consuming a diet free of foods that contain disaccharides or polysaccharides, more complex sugars and carbohydrates, such as those in all grains, most beans, and most sweeteners. These complex sugars feed harmful bacteria in the small intestine that prevent its repair or proper function.
Cross Reactive Foods
Some foods can cross-react with glutenGrains and legumes present problems for other reasons. Research has shown that many gluten-intolerant people cross-react with other foods. In other words, their body erroneously recognizes other foods as gluten and reacts accordingly. Not surprisingly, most grains fall into the category of top 24 foods most often to cause cross-reactivity, including less common ones as amaranth and quinoa.
Other common cross-reactive foods include dairy, chocolate, sesame, and coffee. Yes, coffee, and after reluctantly going coffee-free many patients have reported coffee was preventing their recovery. Fortunately it is now possible to test which foods might be provoking a cross-reaction to gluten, which you can read abou there.
I tell all my gluten-free patients to avoid corn, even though this contradicts the advice on many gluten-free websites. The gluten protein in corn is similar enough to that in wheat and wheat-like grains that it can provoke an immune response. Also, corn has been bred over the years to resist pests. Unfortunately this bred into corn a compound called fucosamine, which is carcinogenic.
Lectins in Grains and Legumes
Grains and legumes are also high in lectins. Lectins have been shown to degrade the intestinal barrier. Once in the bloodstream they may bind to insulin receptors and leptin receptors (leptin acts in concert with insulin to control appetite). Some believe lectins may also have the ability to desensitize these receptors, thus contributing to insulin resistance and leptin resistance.
Fortunately ample support exists on the internet today for a diet such as this. There are online “tribes” for many variations of this diet. They include paleo, primal, GAPS, SCD, and probably some other variations I haven’t heard of yet. Many people have adapted some version of this diet and are happy to help and support others.
Remember, pay attention to blood sugar symptoms, keep blood sugar stable, and be aware of which foods trigger your symptoms. These are always good basic guidelines with which to start.
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