The Intestinal Permeability (IP) Assessment is a noninvasive test that measures absorption and barrier function of the gut. The small intestine functions as a digestive and absorptive organ for nutrients, as well as a powerful immune and physical barrier against excessive pathogenic bacteria, food antigens and other macromolecules.
The IP Assessment directly measures the ability of two non-metabolized sugar molecules – lactulose and mannitol – to permeate the intestinal mucosa. Your IP Assessment will include a drink containing a premeasured amount of lactulose and mannitol, which when consumed will reflect the degree of intestinal permeability through the levels of the two sugars recovered in urine samples over the next 6 hours.
After carefully following the instructions outlined in the link below, your collection of urine samples should remain in the refrigerator until shipped to Genova’s lab in the prepaid envelope provided.
What is intestinal permeability?
The small intestine functions as a selective barrier to toxins and large molecules, such as incompletely digested food particles. This test checks for an increase in intestinal permeability, which can indicate compromised barrier function of the small intestine, and is also known as “leaky gut”. Leaky gut is common in disorders such as inflammatory bowel disease, food allergies, autoimmune disease, chronic skin disorders and chronic inflammation.
What causes an increase in intestinal permeability?
Abnormal intestinal permeability can be caused by a number of different things, though the most common causes include:
- Intestinal infection
- Ingestion of allergenic foods or toxic chemicals
- Overall poor diet
- Deficient secretory IgA
- Trauma and stressful lifestyle
Does the test need to be performed in a doctor’s office?
No, you may do the test yourself in the comfort of your home. Please be sure to carefully review and follow the instructions provided with the testing kit to ensure accurate results.
Must I fast before the test?
You must fast for 8 hours before beginning the test. We highly recommend you do the test first thing in the morning upon waking.
The test is taken over the course of 6 hours. Is fasting required throughout the entire duration?
Fasting is not required during the entire duration of the testing. However, do not eat or drink for two hours after taking the test drink. At two hours, drink a glass of water, then at least a cup of water every hour until you finish your test. You may eat and drink as usual two hours after taking the test drink.
Are there certain foods I should avoid throughout the duration of the test?
Yes, you must avoid certain foods or beverages, especially those containing fructose (fruit sugar), during the test. These include:
- Fruits, fruit juices, jams, jellies, etc.
- Soft drinks and foods sweetened with high fructose corn syrup
- Any dairy products
- Dietetic chocolate
- Honey and other sweeteners
- Mushrooms, beans (legumes including peanuts), celery
- Chewing gum
What is the turnaround time for the IP Assessment?
Your results will be available approximately 2 weeks from the time you send in your kit.