Leaky Gut Syndrome

13C-Sucrose Breath Test for Leaky Gut Syndrome

The 13C-Sucrose breath test for Leaky Gut Syndrome is an innovative, simple, non-invasive method for measuring intestinal wellness. Metabolic Solutions makes it easy to test for leaky gut syndrome by providing breath test kits and lab services to analyze the breath samples.  We offer this test directly to consumers and healthcare professionals at a low cash price of $125.00 with free shipping and a no questions asked full refund policy.

Healthcare Professionals can establish an account to receive leaky gut breath test kits without long-term obligation or minimum purchases.  We may be able to directly bill patient’s health insurance.  To establish an account, please contact us by email or call customer service toll-free at (866) 302-1998 (Monday – Friday 7:30 AM – 6:00 PM EST).

Consumers can order the leaky gut breath test directly without having to go through a physician.  Simply select the order tests icon at the top of this page. If you prefer to phone in your order, call us toll free at 866-302-1998  (Monday – Friday from 7:30AM to 6:00 PM EST).  Callers outside the United States can reach us at 603-598-6960.

Why is it important to test for Leaky Gut Syndrome?

Leaky Gut Syndrome is a condition in which the lining of the small bowel becomes damaged and the gut wall is severely weakened.  The intestine is subjected to a number of insults daily from things such as caffeine, alcohol, medicines, chemicals, stress and certain foods.  In fact, it is the gastrointestinal mucosa that is most susceptible to this damage.  In particular, the damage to the intestinal cells from these injuries/insults results in diminished brush border enzyme activity.   The 13C-sucrose breath test is an important tool that allows early nutritional intervention to preserve intestinal function/nutritional status while preventing or reducing further intestinal damage. This simple breath test is a non-invasive measure of your small intestinal villus health (and therefore leaky gut syndrome) based on the level of sucrase activity in these critical brush border cells.  Sucrase levels are reduced with intestinal damage but are otherwise relatively stable by race and throughout life.

It has been proposed that when substances such as toxins, microbes, undigested food, waste or larger than normal macromolecules leak through an abnormally-permeable gut wall, they affect the body directly or generate an immune response to their presence.  Some alternative practitioners believe that leaky gut syndrome is a possible starting point or has a connection with many disorders such as asthma, diabetes, autoimmune diseases like lupus, scleroderma, and colitis, long term disorders like rheumatoid arthritis and severe illnesses like multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue syndrome and Crohn’s disease.

What are the symptoms of Leaky Gut Syndrome?

  • Gluten intolerance
  • Muscle cramps and pains
  • Bloating
  • Heartburn
  • Abdominal pain
  • Appetite loss

What is the principle of the 13C-Sucrose Breath Test?

As a result of their photosynthetic pathway, certain plants produce sugars, such as sucrose, that are naturally enriched in the stable, non-radioactive isotope carbon-13.  When the sucrose is digested by the body, the carbon dioxide (CO2) which is produced by normal metabolism and exhaled in the breath can be measured for carbon-13 content.  When a healthy person ingests the 20 gram sucrose dose, the brush border enzymes of the small intestine split the disaccharide quickly to glucose and fructose (via the enzyme sucrase) and these simple sugars are metabolized to CO2 and exhaled.  In the case of a leaky gut, the damaged intestinal villi which are responsible for producing the sucrase and digesting the sucrose are incapable of this process and the amount of carbon-13 content in the breath remains low.

In the 13C-Sucrose Breath Test, the patient collects a baseline breath sample, drinks a 20 gram sucrose solution and collects additional time points at 30, 60 and 90 minutes post-ingestion. The tubes are analyzed for the presence of 13CO2 in the exhaled breath.  If the cumulative percentage dose recovery of the sucrose at 90 minute is <5.10% 13C for females or <3.91% 13C for males, the test is considered positive for intestinal damage.

How do you treat Leaky Gut Syndrome?

The main treatment for Leaky Gut Syndrome is nutritional counseling. It is important to get the body back to optimum health and avoid the foods or toxins that are causing the symptoms, so that the damaged villi in the intestine have a chance to heal. Factors that could be causing the increased permeability should be eliminated such as coffee or alcohol or other offending substances. This could be a simple dietary change.  There are also supplements, such as glutamine, that can help to reverse this condition. Leaky gut syndrome may also indicate some deficiencies in critical nutrients such as amino acids and certain vitamins. This malabsorption may need a course of probiotics to restore the microbial balance of the gut.

The sucrose breath test results are not intended for diagnosis of disease.  They are intended to provide nutritional guidelines to qualified healthcare professionals with full knowledge of patient history and concerns to assist in the design of an appropriate healthcare program.

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