While each person is different, there are many foods that heal leaky gut and a few that are believed to cause it. Your experience will be unique for you, but the foods listed below will provide you with some guidance on what to look for and what to avoid. Work with your healthcare professional to come to a balanced approach to healing leaky gut syndrome, which may include cutting out some foods, eating others, and adding supplements to your daily regime.


The predominant theory is that saturated fats in the bloodstream increase the permeability of the lining of the gut, which allows endotoxins to be reabsorbed into the body, causing an immune response from the body to bacteria. Another theory is that meat has enough endotoxin to elicit an immune response from the body.

If you plan to eat meat, consider buying grass-fed, organic meat. This is some of the healthiest meat you can purchase and eat.


There's a reason why a gluten-free diet is so popular these days. Gluten may be found in most foods containing wheat and grains and may damage your intestinal lining, causing leaky gut syndrome.


Another issue to consider with dairy is milk protein allergy. People who are allergic to milk protein produce antibodies against the proteins, which may result in gastrointestinal symptoms common to leaky gut, IBS, IBD, or other digestive disorders.

In addition, the protein A1 casein is thought to be more inflammatory to your gut and the pasteurization process destroys many of the positive enzymes within the milk. People who are lactose intolerant find milk difficult to digest. Alternatives include goat milk, almond milk, or soy milk.

Refined sugar

Refined sugar feeds bacteria which can create toxins in the gut which bore holes in your intestinal lining. If you suffer from candida or an overgrowth of yeast, refined sugar will also feed the candida, making your situation worse.

Wine and alcohol

Alcohol consumption reduces the production of prostaglandins, a hormone-like substance which controls numerous body functions, including the contraction and relaxation of smooth muscle. Of course, smooth muscle is found in the stomach and small intestine, and is responsible for absorption. Prostaglandins also modulation of inflammation. Of course, both these functions interfere with people suffering from irritable bowel syndrome. So in order to reduce your symptoms and help heal your leaky gut, consider cutting wine and alcohol out of your diet.

Soda that contains phosphoric acid

Eating an alkaline diet is something many healers recommend to prevent and/or reverse disease states. This is because having an acidic condition in the body leads to a flourishing environment for bad bacteria and may also lead to permeability in the intestinal lining. Because phosphoric acid can have a negative impact on your health, one of which is creating an acidic environment in your body, most health professionals recommend cutting out dark colored sodas like Coke, Pepsi, and Dr. Pepper. If you're wondering which sodas contain phosphoric acid, here's a list.


While many health websites and magazines talk about the health benefits of coffee, most health professionals don't recommend it for leaky gut. Coffee alternatives include Yerba mate or green tea.

Foods grown with pesticides

We think everyone can agree that pesticides are not good for you and should be avoided. Well, doubly so for those with leaky gut syndrome. Pesticides increase gut permeability, leading to the absorption of toxins into the body, resulting in inflammation and an autoimmune response which cascades into leaky gut symptoms.

Food additives

In addition to avoiding the above mentioned foods, you may want to stay away from any processed foods which contain the following additives in their ingredients.

  • Emulsifiers

  • Cellulose gum

  • Lecithin

  • Polysorbate

  • Sodium

  • Gluten

Because leaky gut is linked to an unhealthy balance of bacteria and growth of yeast (candida) in the lining of the gut, avoiding foods that promote an acidic environment is a wise choice. Likewise, avoiding foods that might promote the growth of unhealthy bacteria or yeast may also help people suffering from leaky gut.

Do you have leaky gut syndrome? What foods do you avoid?