Intestinal Permeability (Leaky Gut) Testing
Intestinal Permeability Assessment is an effective and non-invasive assessment of small intestinal absorption and barrier function in the bowel. This test analyzes urine for the clearance of two non-metabolized sugars, lactulose and mannitol, identifying intestinal permeability (“leaky gut”) and malabsorption. Both malabsorption and increased intestinal permeability are associated with chronic gastrointestinal imbalances, as well as many systemic disorders.
Being on the front lines in defending the body, the mucosal layer, the extrinsic barrier, of the GI tract is exposed to a multitude of stressors, antigens, pathogens, imbalances of neurotransmitters, toxins and medications, and sometimes this barrage can weaken and break down the protective barrier. What follows the loss of mucosal immune tolerance is a cascade beginning with the formation of immune complexes and inflammatory cytokine responses. These abnormal levels of regulatory cytokine production such as in IL-10 and TGF-beta lead to enhanced intestinal permeability in which the tight junctions in the intrinsic barrier open and allow the passage of dietary proteins and peptides into the blood stream. Commonly known as leaky gut, enhanced gut permeability is the precursor to autoimmune disorders such as Type I Diabetes, RA, Lupus, MS and autoimmune hypothyroidism. It is also the pathway to neurologic dysfunction associated with gluten intolerance, Celiac disease, Autism and ADHD.↑