Finally, the top 15 supplements for leaky gut revealed AND ranked on one page!
Here’s how I’ve broken the pyramid up
1) Level 1 – Must haves
These are the supplements I take no matter what.
And that’s because they have the most direct impact on our gut health (especially intestinal lining), are hard to get from our food, give the best bang for buck, and of course, are backed by the most studies.
Only 3 fit the bill!
- L-Glutamine powder – 5 g with 8 oz (240 ml) water, taken 1-3 times a day away from meals
- Digestive enzymes – 1 capsule of a powerful, plant-based, broad spectrum enzyme complex with each main meal
- Probiotics – 30-50 billion CFUs with 10-12 quality strains, and delayed release capsule, per day
You’ve no doubt heard about all 3, and you probably already take some of them. They truly are the superheroes!
2) Level 2 – Good if budget allows
There are some fantastic supplements in this level of the pyramid. Roughly 8 in total.
- Betaine HCl with pepsin – 500-1,000 mg of HCl with 10-20 mg pepsin and ideally 25-50mg ox bile to support initial break down of both protein and fat
- Collagen protein – 5-20 g of hydrolyzed collagen peptides (most bioavailable version) – opt for high quality grass-fed collagen like this one
- Prebiotic powder – 2.5-10 g of low FODMAP prebiotics like Acacia Fiber (start small)
- Zinc & magnesium – 10-20 mg of zinc and 200-400 mg of magnesium
- Omega 3 fatty acids – 1,000-2,000 mg of omega 3s, eg 2 capsules of triple strength fish oil
- Vitamin D with K – 2,000-5,000 iu vitamin D3 with 50-100 mcg vitamin K2 (MK7)
- Colostrum – 1-3 g away from meals (start small)
- Demulcent plants – My favorites – 500 mg DGL licorice, 200 mg slippery elm, 100 mg marshmallow root, 100 mg aloe vera
But since no one has the time or money to take all of them, I’ve specified criteria and questions to ask yourself to determine what makes sense for you (which you can find further down this article).
This is super important for making your supplement protocol realistic (and something you’ll actually stick with).
3) Level 3 – Experiment someday/maybe
This is a collection of interesting supplements that could help, but whose efficacy data is nowhere near as solid as supplements in Levels 1 and 2.
- N-Acetyl-Glucosamine – 200-500 mg NAG (derived from shellfish)
- Quercetin – 100-200 mg, preferably in dihydrate form
- Curcumin – 500-1,000 mg of curcuminoids (see label)
In other words, they’re worth looking at ‘someday’ if you’ve tried all the others and are still not feeling great.
4) Level 4 – For specific issues only
Only worth considering if you are trying to tackle a very particular issue.
eg parasites or yeast overgrowth etc.
How we went from 73 potential supplements for leaky gut to a top 15
I know supplements can be expensive and time consuming to take. And I don’t want you to waste your money or time. So the team and I were extremely diligent in our research and in reaching consensus.
In the end, we actually managed to order every supplement in the pyramid from most important to least, so you know exactly what to pay most of your attention to.
And it took days and days of work with my team of digestive health experts to build this pyramid for you.
You see, although there are a lot of terrible supplements out there, that do next to nothing for gut health (hello Amazonian berries!), there are quite a few that offer great support.
From mucus secretion promoters to intestinal lining feeders, it is a wild and wondrous world. In fact, we started with a list of 73 worthwhile contenders!
Not only did I want to whittle the 73 down into just 15, but I then wanted to narrow it down even further to a simple top 3.
I don’t expect anyone to take all 15 after all! Heck, even 3-4 supplements can feel like a lot. So further below, I will also run through my very practical tips on “What to buy?”.
I’ve based these recommendations on efficacy data from 100s of studies, as well as my personal experience and the reports of 1000s of readers.
For example, you’ll see L-Glutamine powder – a simple 1-ingredient supplement – absolutely dominating the rankings. It has many studies focused on intestinal permeability support, plus it is the #1 supplement readers have told me helped them the most – and the fastest.