LEAKY GUT/LEAKY BRAIN – WENDY BLANCHARD, M.S., CHHC, CPS

My interest in the gut/brain connection was born of my own serious gut inflammation, and experiences of lifelong addiction to prescription drugs, anxiety and depression. When I began my recovery nearly 8 years ago, I had no idea of the correlation between my gut health and my brain health. Once I began my wellness recovery journey, and I became certified in holistic health coaching, and mental health first aid as an educator and consultant, I learned of the connection between my early childhood trauma that went untreated until I began my recovery 8 years ago, and my physical health. I began working with a team of holistic professionals, as well as traditional medical professionals, and began to research, study, and experiment with natural and organic solutions to treat my “leaky gut,” and “leaky brain.”

Leaky gut is when the gut barrier, the villi, become diminished, or completely compromised to the point of malfunction in the digestive tract. This allows toxic particles (unhealthy foods, glyphosates which contribute to destroying gut microbiome, environmental substances, etc.) to pass from the digestive tract into the bloodstream. When this occurs, the balance of inflammatory immune responses is disrupted, leading to chronic inflammation and poor immunity, and causes a “leaky brain,” where neurological conditions are related to intestinal permeability. We see symptoms such as depression, anxiety, bipolar, schizophrenia, autism, just to name a few. This is known as the “blood/brain barrier.” Leaky brain syndrome occurs when the blood brain barrier fails to keep out certain substances. Harmful substances are able to carry through the walls and find their way into the brain which causes serious changes in the way that we feel and function every day. Leaky brain syndrome is directly correlated to leaky gut syndrome.

Due to the extensive trauma that I had suffered as a child, young adult, and as a young mom in the 1980s that went untreated, I developed Inflammatory Bowel Disease, (IBD), specifically severe Ulcerative Colitis, IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), acid reflux, gastritis, just to name a few. I was living with severe depression and debilitating anxiety. My gut/immune system was completely compromised, and to numb the trauma, and then the severe physical symptoms, I began, at age 14, using prescribed Codeine Sulfate, to which I became immediately addicted, and lasted 40 years, until I sought treatment. The addiction was inevitable due to genetics, and to my extremely toxic environment, including no loving adult support which in, and of itself, enabled this “perfect storm.”

Leaky gut causes health challenges that you may not necessarily associate with your gut such as digestive issues, food sensitivities and allergies, inflammatory skin conditions, depression, anxiety, autoimmune disease, a variety of chronic gastrointestinal symptoms such as constipation, diarrhea, bloating, fatigue, and many more.

Wheat is a major contributor to the breakdown of the gut lining, but not only the protein in wheat, but also the use of glyphosate (herbicide that can kill certain weeds and grasses and found in wheat) that contributes to destroying your gut microbiome and its related functions of digestion of our food, and production of amino acids, which are precursors for our neurotransmitters, important nutrients, and hormones.

Since the year 2000, we have seen an increase in non-celiac gluten sensitivity, wheat allergy, celiac disease, gut disorders, and neurological disorders.

“All disease begins in the gut.” Here is where 70% of our immune system is housed. In order to strengthen our immune system, we must address our gut health, which directly affects our brain health.

For more information on how I can support you in reaching your health and wellness goals, especially in the gut/brain connection, please either email me at wendyblanchard044@gmail.com, or fill out the contact page on this website.

The ongoing stress that we are all experiencing today living with unprecedented, stressful circumstances in this era of COVID-19, in and of itself, is causing inflammation on a cellular level. Together, we can manage symptoms, and find healthy, sustainable solutions which include healthy practices of exercise, eating healthy foods, stress management, good sleep hygiene, and loving, healthy relationships, all which promotes wellness on a cellular level!

Wishing you harmonious health 4 life!

Love and blessings,

Wendy