We finally understand the role leaky gut syndrome plays in a multitude of health problems. Bloating, gas, cramps, aches, pain, illness, weight gain, and food sensitivity could all be caused by a leaky gut.
Even depression, anxiety, and mood imbalances can be caused by an out-of-whack microbiome. While we're still learning about the underpinnings of leaky gut syndrome, the theory is that intestinal permeability may allow toxins into the bloodstream to trigger inflammatory responses that create illness, pain, and disease.
As a certified nutritionist, I get inquiries about which supplements are best for leaky gut for women on a daily basis. I want to share what I consider the best products for healing the gut.
Are Leaky Gut Supplements For Women Effective?
I've seen many women clients make major improvements after using supplements for leaky gut syndrome. While I can't guarantee that any specific product can work for you, I can say that addressing the underlying causes of gut permeability may help you to reverse symptoms that are robbing you of your health, energy, and vitality. I break down what makes products good for healing the gut in my product reviews below.
Buying Guide on Women’s Supplements for Leaky Gut
Don't fill your cart until you check out my list of "winners" when shopping for the best supplement for leaking gut syndrome, specifically for women.
What Supplement Is Best for Leaky Gut?
Leaky gut syndrome usually happens because a "perfect storm" of imbalances and deficiencies is happening in your gut. That's why you need a "perfect storm" of nutrients to help undo the damage. These are the ingredients I want you to look for when choosing the best leaky gut solution!
You'll notice that L-glutamine is featured in several of the products I've reviewed above. Based on research, L-glutamine has three very important functions for the gut. It has been found to have a positive impact on sustaining the balance of the gut microbiome, increasing the expression of tight junction proteins and intestinal lining integrity, and helping to minimize the inflammatory response.
It's essentially impossible to heal your gut without probiotics. Probiotics are strains of "good bacteria" that populate the gut microbiome to fight off bad bacteria that can make you ill. Everything from stress to antibiotics can deplete your gut of probiotics. There are many reasons why women should take probiotics, and fixing or preventing a leaky gut is one of them.
Vitamin D helps to regulate intestinal barrier integrity. Based on one study, vitamin D deficiency is linked with gut dysbiosis and inflammation.
Digestive enzymes act like solvents for breaking food down into easily digestible, easily absorbed components. While raw foods are full of digestive enzymes, the body has to produce its own enzymes when eating processed foods. Supplementing can be a big help for making the foods you eat easier to digest and process.
While we often think of taking zinc supplements to help with getting over a cold, zinc actually plays a big role in producing digestive enzymes. Zinc is especially beneficial for breaking down proteins to ensure that we're getting the nourishment we intend to get when eating "healthy" foods.
Are collagen peptides good for leaky gut syndrome? We aren't sure just yet. However, we do know that collagen is important for building and maintaining healthy connective tissue in the digestive tract. Many people find that using collagen peptides has a restorative effect on damaged digestive tissue.
What Is Leaky Gut Syndrome?
There's a lot we're still learning about leaky gut syndrome. What we do know is that this appears to be a condition where the barrier lining of the intestine becomes damaged. When this happens, food and waste particles are able to enter the bloodstream to cause inflammation. Many people who develop leaky gut syndrome also deal with severe food sensitivity.
The common symptoms of leaky gut syndrome are abdominal pain, bloating, gas, cramps, diarrhea, constipation, and fatigue. Some people even develop irritable bowel syndrome. You may also find that you're sensitive to foods that you never had a problem with before. Wheat (gluten), dairy, and sugar are common triggers of irritation in people with leaky gut syndrome. You may also find that certain categories of food trigger leaky gut attacks. The list of the worst foods for leaky gut syndrome include processed foods, snack foods, candy, baked goods, processed meats, oils, and soda.
Top-Rated Leaky Gut Supplements For Women Worth Trying
After checking out products that claim to heal a leaky gut, I've picked 10 winners that offer product integrity.
I chose Primal Harvest Gut Restore as the best women's supplement for a leaky gut because it is formulated with the necessary probiotic strains that help heal leaky gut issues. This is an excellent leaky gut supplement for women if you think your gut microbiome may have an imbalance between good and bad bacteria. It's my top pick if you’re suffering from irregularity, constipation, and other "bathroom" troubles.
This supplement impresses me from the start due to its gut-building trifecta of prebiotics, probiotics, and postbiotics. It contains something called CoreBiome® tributyrin to strengthen the gut barrier. CoreBiome® is a postbiotic derived from a short-chain fatty-acid called butyrate that is produced by your gut under normal conditions. When your natural production slows down due to a lack of healthy bacteria, your gut barrier function is diminished. This supplement also contains the B. longum BB536 strain that is known to promote better digestion and regularity.
I'm a big fan of the CoreBiome® postbiotic because I think that it could be the missing link for some people. The only thing that could make me hesitant to recommend this product is that it's possible you might get the results you need by starting with a basic probiotic blend instead of jumping straight to postbiotics.
I am impressed by the completeness of this formula. It approaches gut healing using several different proven ingredients.
While I won't go through the list of 16 extracts, nutrients, and amino acids packed into this supplement, I do want to focus on the big ones that help to reduce bloating, fight cravings, and reestablish gut health. The first is the gut-wall-building amino acid called L-glutamine. Next, N-acetyl D-glucosamine helps to absorb lectins in your gut that would otherwise bind to your gut lining to do damage. Finally, a combination of zinc and L-carnosine labeled under the name of PepZin GI is a powerhouse for soothing irritated gut lining. If you're suffering from sluggish digestion, the magnesium in this blend helps to move food along your gut to ensure it gets digested.
This is a high-end product with a price that's double to triple what other products on my list cost! The good news is that the savings get pretty extreme once you bundle three bottles at checkout. Be sure to confirm that licorice root won't interfere with any of your medications before taking this product.
This is a unique product because it uses the Akkermansia muciniphila prebiotic strain to address leaky gut syndrome. Identified using DNA sequencing, Akkermansia muciniphila is a patented strain that has been linked with improved gut health. It has also been linked with reduced risk for metabolic syndrome.
In addition to Akkermansia muciniphila, Pendulum Akkermansia also contains five other probiotic strains linked with a myriad of benefits for both digestive health and overall health. This formula is actually designed to help manage type 2 diabetes. Many of the hundreds of positive reviews online for Pendulum Akkermansia credit this supplement with being able to heal the gut.
While the price of this Pendulum Akkermansia is pretty reasonable when you subscribe for monthly refills, the one-time cost is definitely an investment.
This is another supplement that combines prebiotic, probiotic, and postbiotic ingredients to provide a true gut rescue. Ritual, is a wonderful women's wellness brand, and this product is becoming very popular.
What gives me confidence in this product is that it's made to be traceable using the most clinically studied probiotic strains. In addition to providing BB-12 (Bifidobacterium anamalis ssp. lactis) and LGG (Lactobacillus rhamnosus), this formula also gives good bacteria what's needed to thrive in your gut using a proprietary Prebiotic PreforPro® forumla. Finally, Corbiome® tributyrin is added as a postbiotic. It all comes delivered in a delayed-release capsule designed to get its ingredients to the colon for ideal probiotic survival and growth.
While it's hard to find anything wrong with such a complete formula for gut support that's made using traceable ingredients, I'll point out that it's possible that your guy may be able to feed healthy bacteria on its own to create similar results if you just try a basic probiotic. While this isn't the most expensive product on my list, it's definitely pricey.
This is a great choice for a potent probiotic if you need help with constant gas, bloating, and constipation, and a general feeling that your digestive health is not where it should be. I would recommend it for someone who is struggling with regularity because it contains key ingredients that can put a stop to chronic constipation that's caused by an unbalanced gut microbiome.
Pendulum GI Repair is designed to unlock your body's own butyrate production. While you may have never heard of butyrate before, it's actually an acid that's produced by the good bacteria in your gut to help break down fiber in the colon. This type of product makes me excited because butyrate is actually linked with reduced risks for colon cancer.
While this product falls right in the middle of the price range when you sign up for a prescription, the per-bottle price is pretty high. I think I made it clear how much I love the fact that this supplement helps the body to produce butyrate. However, it's hard to say if this alone will help to fix your digestive problems if you're missing some core prebiotics.
I really like how accessible the price is with this supplement compared to similar options. You're actually getting many of the same ingredients in premium supplements for a much friendlier price. This can be considered a whole-health supplement that just happens to also support healthy digestive activity.
1st Phorm GI Advantage contains L-glutamine that acts as fuel for the cells. The zinc in this supplement is great for supporting healthy tissue function that's important for promoting healthy secretions in the stomach. Next, this brand uses a prebiotic fiber called galactoarabinan that nourishes healthy gut bacteria. Something I found interesting about this formula is that it contains aloe vera to help keep your GI tract's pH balance healthy by preventing yeast growth. There's also an amino dimethylglycine to support the immune system. Finally, this concoction actually soothes the digestive tract using slippery elm bark and marshmallow root.
While I really love the way this supplement does so much for the entire body, I don't know if the formula is necessary unless you're struggling with digestive distress. For example, taking slippery elm bark and marshmallow root daily might not be needed if you don't have stomach discomfort.
PureHealth's "gut rescue" product offers robust ingredients that are associated with both whole-body and digestive health.
PureHealth is very transparent about what's in this supplement. It contains L-glutamine, glucosamine HCL, citrus pectin, licorice root, aloe vera, slippery elm, chamomile, okra, prune, quercetin, cat's claw, marshmallow root, and zinc. While I don't have time to go into why each ingredient is beneficial, I want to focus on a few rare finds. I really like seeing chamomile on the list because we don't talk enough about the fact that chamomile contains antioxidants that show strong evidence for prevention of some digestive cancers. I also love seeing the natural fiber from okra and prune. The last interesting ingredient I'll point out is quercetin because it's so rare to see this ingredient in supplements. In studies, quercetin has been shown to enhance intestinal barrier function and modulate gut microbiota composition.
Taking this supplement requires a little bit of extra time and planning because it comes in powder form instead of capsule form.
#8. Amen Leaky Gut+
Amen Leaky Gut+ is another budget pick I'm happy to put on my list because it stands up next to much pricier options. This one brings things back to simplicity by fortifying the gut with strong probiotics.
It takes just a few seconds to consume 10 billion CFU of plant and soil based probiotics with these capsules! Unlike some products that focus on one probiotic strain, this one rounds things out beautifully with B. clausii, B. coagulans, B. subtilis, and S. boulardi. You're also getting fermented and organic prebiotics to ensure that the probiotics thrive in your gut. You can feel good about the fact that the prebiotic power of this supplement comes from organic apple cider vinegar, organic ginger root, organic turmeric root, and organic marshmallow root powder. Zinc and L-glutamine round out the ingredient list.
It's hard to find any issues with something that combines such potent probiotics with prebiotic power from natural superfoods. My only comment would be that you might not need so much variety if you're only lacking one specific thing that is causing digestive issues.
Total Gut Health is one of my favorite ONNIT products. This can be a great all-in-one digestive support aid if you feel that your microbiome is sluggish on several different fronts. It combines digestive enzymes, prebiotics, probiotics, and betaine HCI. ONNIT's capsules come in packs that are easy to take along anywhere.
It's likely that you've never heard of betaine HCI before. Known to temporarily increase stomach acid levels, this compound helps to relieve stomach discomfort, stop heartburn, and improve digestion. I'm impressed that this supplement contains five strains of probiotics (L. acidophilus DDS-1, L. plantarum, L. rhamnosus, B. infantis, and B. lactis). It also contains organic Jerusalem artichoke, organic dandelion root, and S. Boulardii as prebiotics that help to feed the probiotic strains.
Something else I like about ONNIT Total Gut Health is that it's designed to enhance digestion to help you get bigger benefits from the healthy foods you're eating. The formula is designed to help you break down food to absorb nutrients, assist with digestion of major macronutrients, boost your immune system, and increase healthy gut flora.
I don't have a lot of bad things to say about this one. However, I've seen several people share that taking such large capsules can feel like a chore.
Leaky Gut Revive is intended to be a gut rescue. It combines prebiotic fiber for a healthy gut microbiome, slippery elm for the gut lining, arabinogalactan for immune system health, and more.
I chose Amy Myers Leaky Gut Revive as one of the best for women because it contains a natural blend of nutrients designed to soothe and repair a woman's gut quickly. This product has proven to restore your delicate 1 cell-layer-thick gut lining, strengthen mucous membrane, and infuse your microbiome with probiotics to help facilitate gut repair.
It's also a wonderful supplement for belly bloating, which many women have a hard time finding treatment options for bloating. Well, Amy Myers Leaky Gut Revive can help with that as well.
Leaky Gut Revive features 3,000 mg of an amino acid called glutamine. According to a 2021 study, glutamine supplementation may play a big role in promoting proper gut health and function. There's also evidence that glutamine can help to repair gut lining. Leaky Gut Revive covers many bases of poor gut health using strategic, all-natural ingredients designed to reduce bloating, soothe the stomach and intestinal lining, fortify the gut mucus layer, restore gut lining, and regenerate gut cells.
Overall, the quality of this product makes it worth trying if you need a gut 911 that will bring you back from the brink. Its high price point may be a drawback for some. I also want to point out that it uses licorice root as an ingredient. Be sure to confirm with your doctor that it's okay to take a product containing licorice root if you're on any kind of prescription medicine.
The standard test for leaky gut syndrome is something called the mannitol lactulose test. During this test, we look at the ability of two non-metabolized sugar molecules called lactulose and mannitol to permeate the intestinal mucosa.
In my experience as a nutritionist, the symptoms of leaky gut syndrome are very real. It's clear that there's a collection of painful symptoms associated with the breakdown of the gut lining. However, we're still learning exactly what's happening in the digestive systems of people with leaky gut syndrome symptoms. As a result, leaky gut is not officially recognized as a medical disorder.
There's no quick fix for leaky gut syndrome. You have to build the gut barrier back up. My go-to recommendations are probiotics, prebiotics, and L-glutamine.
In reality, any food can trigger leaky gut symptoms if your case is severe enough. However, foods that we classically call "junk" foods are the worst offenders. This usually means any type of processed food containing refined carbohydrates, sugar, and oils.
Alternatives Compared to Leaky Gut Supplements
What if you're not ready to go all in with leaky gut supplements that contain several different ingredients? I have some alternatives to turning to leaky gut pills.
Probiotics Help Overall Gut Health
It's essential to at least invest in a high-quality probiotic if you suspect that you have leaky gut syndrome. In fact, pure probiotics are recommended for helping to correct any kind of gut issue because you can't get your gut in balance unless you have enough good bacteria.
Consider A Gut Health Test From Home
Did you know that you can actually do a gut health test from home? Many companies now offer this service. Of course, you can also visit with a dietitian in person to ask about gut health tests. These kits use stool samples to search for levels of thousands of microbes in your gut. They deliver a report letting you know about the probiotic makeup of your gut to help you learn what you need to add to your diet to get back in balance.
Make The Necessary Changes To Your Diet
It's hard to heal a gut that's constantly being irritated by "abrasive" foods. In some cases, going on an elimination diet to identify foods that may be triggering leaky gut syndrome is effective. I personally recommend a diet full of fiber and natural probiotics to help get on the right track. This includes yogurt, kefir, leafy greens, and lean proteins.
Improve Your Exercise Routine
According to some breakthrough research, exercise improves gut bacteria. Researchers at the University of Illinois found that exercising for just six weeks can positively impact the microbiome. What's especially exciting about these findings is that researchers noticed increases in gut microbes that assist in the production of short-chain fatty acids associated with reduced risks for type 2 diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and a host of other inflammatory diseases.
Your leaky gut symptoms don't stay in your gut. When food molecules enter the bloodstream instead of staying in the digestive tract, this creates a recipe for inflammatory immune responses. People with leaky gut syndrome often feel extremely ill.
While I can't tell you how to cure leaky gut syndrome, I can tell you from my personal experience as a certified nutritionist that ignoring the issue can cause it to escalate month after month. A good leaky gut supplement is an excellent place to start with repairing gut lining using probiotics, prebiotics, and other compounds known to have reparative effects on the gut microbiome.
Take Home Tips
Be an investigator! I know it's hard to push forward when it feels like doctors may not be taking your leaky gut symptoms seriously.
I believe that most people can heal their leaky gut syndrome if they're willing to take time to try different supplements that are known to help rebuild gut lining. Of course, supplements alone may not be enough. Pair your supplementation with lifestyle and diet changes. If possible, make a plan that reduces stress, increases exercise, and adds tons of whole, natural foods in place of processed foods.
Finally, I want to remind everyone to be screened for digestive diseases and cancers if you're suffering from pain, bloating, bleeding, chronic diarrhea, and chronic constipation. You have to rule out acute disease before beginning the path to self-healing.