By Deirdre Parkinson, Naturopath
Have you had blood test results that were in in liver enzymes? So high that your GP wondered if you were a closet alcoholic!? High liver GGT enzymes can hint at a toxic liver. Alcohol in excess will cause liver toxicity and can cause a rise in GGT enzymes in a liver test. However high GGTs can also be caused by two other common toxic byproducts. One is certain medications.
Many pharmaceutical drugs need to be metabolized though the liver, and can therefor cause a rise in liver enzymes. Another surprising cause of liver toxicity is a condition known as Leaky Gut Syndrome. In this case, the very toxins that are meant to be passed out of the body through good gut function and elimination are instead leaked back into the blood stream and passed back to the liver for recycling!
Causes of leaky gut syndrome range from our rather toxic Western Diet, to past infections from parasites or food poisonings. Testing is quite easy, although the current symptoms and health history are generally enough to confirm the need for gut detox and gut repair.
Some of the warning symptoms of Leaky Gut Syndrome are any in the list below:
- Indigestion /Heart burn /Reflux
- Stomach pains / Nausea /Vomiting
- Burping /Bad breath / Loss of taste
- Crave sweets /Sleepiness after consuming a high carbohydrate meal
- Bowels do not open regularly every day
- Diarrhea or Constipation or both?
- Bowel gas / Bloated stomach
- Itchy bottom
- Blood in your stools or on the toilet paper
- Thinner stools then normal
- Feeling like you haven’t completely emptied your bowel
- The sensation of a lump/pain/or discomfort in your lower abdomen
- Antibiotic medications: when?
- High cholesterol / Gallstones / Pain the right side
- Hepatitis / High alcohol consumption
- Cold intolerance / Heat intolerance
Treatment involves first using herbal based medications to eliminate any chronic parasitic infections. The next step is to heal the “leaky” damaged gut lining. Herbal and nutritional compounds are used. The next few steps involve re-establishing the normal gut flora, checking for food intolerances, establishing good bowel function, and helping make healthy diet choices.
PS. It is important to know that the reference ranges for most blood tests are based on random bloods from the population that is following a Western lifestyle that is not evolutionarily correct or healthy. The so called “normal range” of a gamma GT used to be a lot lower than it is now, but has been allowed to be higher because this enzyme is raised by alcohol and prescription drugs which so many people have today on a regular basis. So now it’s considered “normal to be toxic!