Intestines and toxins

We have written many times about the great importance of proper bowel function for the whole body. Digestive disorders lead to improper removal of waste products and can contribute to increased risk of many diseases and the development of inflammation.

Every day we are exposed to toxic compounds contained in food and medications, but the threat to the intestines can also come from within. Bacteria living in our intestines produce a number of metabolites, as well as endotoxins, which can damage the intestinal mucosa and worsen our health. However, even with abnormal bacterial flora, a well-functioning intestinal mucosa should be a sufficient protective barrier against toxins. Unfortunately, there are many factors that contribute to damage of the mucosa and the formation of leaky gut syndrome, for example, excessive alcohol intake, some anti-inflammatory drugs, long-term antibiotic therapy without the support of probiotics, improper diet. Digestive disorders also have a very adverse effect. If the retention of digested food masses takes too long, it can weaken the condition of the intestinal mucosa, exposing it to prolonged contact with toxins of external origin.

With increased intestinal permeability, toxins and other harmful metabolic products enter the bloodstream and can negatively affect the functioning of many organs and systems in the body.

Intestinal dysfunctions that contribute to or cause gut toxins:

  • Maldigestion
  • Loss of mucosa permeability
  • Food constituents and additives
  • Microbiome problems: wrong bacteria, bacteria in the wrong place, elevated levels of endotoxins produced by “normal” bacteria,
  • Gut inflammation

How to help yourself? In addition to conducting reliable diagnostics and curing accompanying diseases, you can work with the proper diet, and if necessary, also with appropriate probiotic therapy and supplementation (e.g. butyrate, colostrum). A hygienic lifestyle is a prerequisite for the proper functioning of the intestinal barrier. Thanks to such strategies, all potentially harmful substances from the external environment, as well as from the inside of the intestines, are retained on the surface of the mucosa and then eliminated from the body.

 

Bibliography:

1. Toxicon. 1998 Apr;36(4):665-85. Interactions between bacterial toxins and  intestinal cellsPopoff MR
2. Bjarnason I, Macpherson A, Hollander D. Intestinal permeability: An overview. Gastroenterology 1995
3. Anatol Panasiuk, Joanna Kowalińska “Mikrobiota przewodu pokarmowego” PZWL, 2019