Changes in intestinal permeability are associated with many health conditions including autoimmune disorders, food sensitivities and inflammatory bowel disease. While it’s not immediately noticeable, it is an important element of health and wellbeing to check. This ‘leaky gut’ causes disease because the perturbed intestinal barrier allows toxic molecules to enter the bloodstream and poison the body.
Intestinal permeability can be measured using the lactulose/mannitol test, that we test using Nutripath testing. The testing process is simple and can be done at home with a simple urine sample, as it measures enzyme levels.
If you struggle with any of the following, this test will offer you further insight:
- Gut dysbiosis: chronic diarrhoea, constipation or bloating
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease – Ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, Coeliac
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Skin problems such as acne, rashes, eczema.
- Joint pain
- Food allergy and sensitivities
The test works on the principle that small molecules are readily absorbed by the intestinal villi, whilst larger molecules are not. These water soluble non-metabolised sugar molecules after penetrating the intestinal tract are excreted into the urine. When the structure of the intestinal epithelium is jeopardised (‘leaky gut’ is present), the large sugar molecule can permeate the mucosa and is recovered in the urine. This is how we determine intestinal permeability.