Dysbiosis is the imbalance of gut bacteria. Dysbiosis is caused by a bacterial infection, excessive use of antibiotics, stress, diet and poor nutrition. This dysbiosis or imbalance of gut bacteria cause gut permeability or leaky gut syndrome.It also causes other gut health problems such as irritable bowel syndrome, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, celiac disease and many more.
Gut barrier limits the passages of nutrients and waste particles. But due to dysbiosis or imbalance of gut bacteria, the lining of the gut becomes damaged resulting in hyperpermeability of gut or leaky gut.
This leaky gut allows foreign particles to enter the bloodstream and thereby cause chronic inflammation.
Causes of Dysbiosis:
Consumption of antibiotics:
Antibiotics not only kill the harmful bacteria but also kill beneficial bacteria. It also gives the harmful bacteria the chance to proliferate over friendly bacteria.
Excessive uptake of sugar, refined starch, processed foods and food additive (preservatives, emulsifiers, and artificial sweetener) feed the bad bacteria. Therefore, this feedings leads to an overgrowth of harmful gut bacteria resulting in dysbiosis.
Administration of harmful chemicals and toxins with foods through our gastrointestinal tract may kill good bacteria in our gut causing an imbalance of gut bacteria or dysbiosis.
Excessive drinking of alcohol:
Increased consumption of alcoholic beverage nor kill gut bacteria as it works as an antimicrobial agent. Thus, alcohol causes a change in the composition of gut bacteria. It also causes the disruption of gut lining resulting in leaky gut syndrome.
Depression, anxiety or stress cause a change in the composition of gut bacteria and thus cause an imbalance of gut bacteria or dysbiosis.
This mental issues also weaken our immune system.
Poor dental hygiene:
Poor dental hygiene allows the growth of harmful bacteria in the mouth. It leads to an increase in the level of harmful bacteria over good bacteria in the gut. This overgrowth of harmful bacteria causes dysbiosis.
You may experience some of the following symptoms:
- Food sensitive or allergies
- Chronic diarrhea
- Excessive fatigue
- Depression, anxiety and concentration deficiency
Hydrogen breath test:
This test is used to determine small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) and lactose/fructose intolerance. This test is used for detecting Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and other gut health problem.
To perform this test, patients have to drink a lactulose-containing solution. Gut bacteria ferment this sugar producing a certain amount of gases.
Patients exhale into the test tube or container. The higher level of certain gases in the test tube indicates that the patient has small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) or dysbiosis.
The organic acid test:
Organic acids are metabolic byproducts produced by microbial metabolism. Increased levels of organic acids indicate the overgrowth of certain microbes (yeasts/bacteria).
For example, a higher level of Arabinose and Tartaric acids the overgrowth of Candida.
Comprehensive digestive tool analysis (CDSA):
It detects the level of good bacteria against bad bacteria. This analysis also detects the level of Short Chain Fatty Acids (SCFA).
Comprehensive digestive tool analysis includes sensitivity testing or antimicrobial susceptibility testing. In these methods, pathogens are detected and tested against antibiotics.
Gut microbiota regulates our overall health conditions. When gut bacteria get imbalanced, it stimulates our immune system. The immune system then attacks our healthy cells especially skin cells causing eczema.
It is another skin issue coming from the imbalance of gut bacteria. People having small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) are more susceptible to get this disease.
Dysbiosis cause leaky gut syndrome and inflammatory bowel disease resulting in psoriasis.
It is another skin issue coming from the imbalance of gut bacteria. People having celiac disease are more susceptible to get this disease.
Heart attack and Stroke:
Gut bacteria can cause heart disease and stroke. Some bacteria produce a chemical compound called trimethylamine. The liver converts this compound to TMAO causing an increased risk of heart disease.
Imbalance of gut bacteria causes leaky gut syndrome causing increased permeability of the gut barrier. This permeable gut allows the microbes and food particle to enter the bloodstream. This entrance stimulates the immune system to attack own healthy tissues causing several autoimmune diseases. They include Multiple sclerosis, Rheumatoid arthritis, and type 1 diabetes.
Dysbiosis or imbalance of gut bacteria plays a role in causing leaky gut syndrome or permeability of the intestinal barrier. This leaky gut permits the intestinal substances to pass through the blood vessel. Our immune system gets stimulated against these particles making us sensitive to any foreign particles.
Asthma is a skin problem resulted from inflammation. Dysbiosis causes leaky gut and leaky gut causes inflammation. This mechanism is as same as described in Allergies” section.
Osteoarthritis comes from dysbiosis. It is an inflammation of joints. This inflammatory condition begins in the gut due to dysbiosis.
Our healthy gut bacteria helps in degrading fat by releasing FIAF (fasting-induced adipose factor) hormone. Actually, this hormone breakdown fat and thereby prevent the body to store fat.
But the imbalance of gut bacteria can’t release proper hormone and thus permit the body to store fat.
Chronic fatigue syndrome:
Dysbiosis cause increased the fermentation of starch producing a higher level of gases like hydrogen sulfite. This gas inhibits the mitochondria to produce ATP or energy making us fatigue.
Imbalanced gut microbiota stimulates the development and proliferation of tumor cells in rectum and colon. These microbes do it by different mechanisms. The mechanisms include stimulation of chronic inflammation or immune response, altering stem cell dynamics, the biosynthesis of harmful chemicals and toxic metabolites.
Scientists showed that colorectal cancer cells contain a higher level of several bacteria. These bacteria include Escherichia coli (E. coli), Bacteroides fragilis (B. fragilis) and Enterococcus faecalis Fusobacterium nucleatum (F. nucleatum), Peptostreptococcus stomatis and Parvimonas micra.
The cancer cell lack several other bacteria such as Clostridiales, Faecalibacterium, Blautia, and Bifidobacterium.
FadA adhesin of F. nucleatum adheres and invade epithelial cells of colon resulting in the induction of inflammatory and carcinogenic signals.
Anxiety and depression:
Gut or enteric nervous system is considered to our second brain. The gut produces 95% of all serotonin and 50% of all dopamine. It contains 200-600 million neurons. If gut health become poor or gut can’t produce hormones or neurotransmitters properly, it adversely affects our brain causing stress, anxiety, and depression.
1. Add a large amount of natural plant fiber (fruit and leafy green), fermented food having probiotic bacteria and prebiotic fiber, oily fish, olive oils and nuts in your diet. These foods include
- Apple Cider Vinegar
- Dandelion green and
- Jerusalem artichoke
2. Practice physical exercise for good health and meditation for preventing stress depression and anxiety.
3. Avoid foods:
- Processed food- salted or canned meat and deli meat
- Refined carbohydrate, heavy foods, white rice, noodles, white bread, and dough
- Foods rich in sugar
- Processed foods containing preservatives and emulsifiers
- Artificial sweetener
4. Antibiotics and medications:
Take antibiotics according to your doctor’s prescription and complete the recommended course of antibiotics.
Take probiotics together with antibiotics to enable the growth of beneficial bacteria.
At the same time take prebiotic foods to feed the probiotic bacteria.
Take probiotic food supplements containing probiotic bacteria. Probiotics are the bacteria living in the gut. They suppress bad bacteria in the gut. They prevent microbial infection. They are actually beneficial bacteria.
See More: 10 Best Probiotics for You in 2019
Prebiotics are food particle that feeds the probiotic bacteria. Prebiotics are rich in Miso, Coconut, Kombucha, Asparagus, Apple Cider Vinegar, Flaxseed, Seaweed, Jicama, Dandelion green, and Jerusalem artichoke.
Only a few studies performed on antibiotics shows that antibiotic can treat dysbiosis. For example, a broad-spectrum antibiotic named rifaximin shows its efficacy in treating dysbiosis-associated illness such as IBS, ulcerative colitis, and Crohn’s disease.
Fecal Microbiota Transplant:
Fecal microbiota matters of healthy people are transmitted to a dysbiosis patient to replace the imbalance gut microbiota. This therapy is applied to the patient who shows resistance to other therapies. Commonly, people infected with C. difficle have to take this type of therapy.
Note that, people may face a risk of taking this therapy to get contamination from the donor. Because the therapy is contaminated itself.
Avoid alcohol consumption:
Alcohol can kill gut bacteria. Because it is an antimicrobial agent. So regular consumption of alcohol cause an imbalance of gut bacteria.