Intro to gut types


In his book, Eat Dirt, Dr Josh Axe suggests that there are 5 different gut types. These include: 

  • The Candida Gut – this type affects more that 68% of American adults and is usually associated with obesity that results in an overgrowth of unfriendly yeasts in the gut.
  • The Stressed Gut – chronic stress results in weakened adrenals, thyroid, and kidneys and disrupts hormonal functions leading to thyroid disease and issues with fatigue.
  • The Immune Gut – individuals with food intolerances and allergies, inflammatory bowel disease, and autoimmune diseases are likely to experience this type.
  • The Gastric Gut – about 60% of adults experience symptoms related to this gut type due to acid reflux and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO).
  • The Toxic Gut – about 30 million people suffer from symptoms related to a toxic gut and these include chronic liver conditions, gallbladder disease, and skin conditions. (Axe, 2016, p. xix)

Over the next 5 weeks we will look at each of these in detail. It is important to identify which digestive type most describes the problems that we experience with our guts if we want to be able to address the symptoms we experience and help our bodies to heal and function more optimally.

Increased intestinal permeability, which is the correct term for “leaky gut”, can have a profound impact on immunity and inflammation throughout the body.

The lining of the digestive tract is integral to our wellbeing. Inflammation in the digestive tract is not isolated to the gut, it influences the rest of our bodies and how we function, think, behave. It can also influence how much energy we have available and how likely we are to get sick or develop chronic diseases.

When the digestive system is starved of nutritive foods, overfed with toxic levels of processed foods and sugars, and overloaded with environmental chemicals and the overuse of antibiotics, our bodies cannot be expected to function well. Add chronic stress to the mix and we are not in a good position to maintain optimal health.

Some signs that you may have increased intestinal permeability (leaky gut) include: 

  • Fatigue and sluggishness
  • Suddenly being intolerant to foods that were never a problem before
  • Frequent heartburn, indigestion, gas, and bloating
  • Brain fog, ADHD, autism, memory issues, inability to focus.
  • Eczema, psoriasis, acne, and other inflammatory skin conditions
  • Chronic pain

Our microbiomes are made up of trillions of bacteria which play an enormous role in our physical and mental health. Over sanitizing and the overuse of anti-bacterial products disrupt our microbiomes by killing off the beneficial bacteria that should be protecting our immune systems. The health of our bodies resides in our digestive tracts so we need to rethink what we could be doing that could be contributing to our gut and other health issues. Just taking a probiotic and thinking all will be ok might not be the best choice and could even make some gut symptoms worse.

Listen to my interview with Brad Kirsten from Radio Cape Pulpit on 25 January 2024 to learn more. Listen to my next interview on Thursday at 7.45am.