Gut health is under appreciated today and most people relate it to absence of gastro intestinal symptoms like: constipation, heartburn, diarrhoea, cramps or nausea. What many people don’t realize is that the gut is integral to ensuring good emotional health, balanced emotions, good learning, thinking and immune function. 70%of the immune system is found in the gut and can lead to chronic infections such as sinusitis How can this be? How can the organ that digests my food have an opinion on what I feel and think?
Have you ever heard or used these expressions I am gutted? Or my gut tells me that this is not a good idea or I don’t have the guts to say that! Where does that come from? Neuro scientists have proved a communication between the gut and the brain. The gut is even called the second brain. The gut feels through the balance of gut bacteria and their release of substances that support gut health like production of vit K and B or substances that lead to inflammation like lipopolysaccharides released from gram negative bacteria (bad bowel bacteria) which damage the immune system.
An American company ‘Heartmath’ has done many research studies on the effect of emotional stress on the nervous system and how the gastrointestinal tract is intimately affected. They use this information to relax and balance the nervous system to remove stress and reduce bowel inflammation as well as improve insomnia and cognitive ability.
The gut is intimately linked to the brain by the nervous system, specifically the vagus nerve and through neurochemicals such as serotonin. Did you know that the gut can tell your brain what to think and feel? Could the excessive use of anti-depressants (SSRI) be aggravated by an inflamed gut that is not able to produce enough serotonin? 90% of the body’s serotonin is produced in the GIT (gastro-intestinal tract) and if the gut is dysfunctional, then these hormones will not be produced in sufficient amounts, presenting with symptoms of depression, moodiness, fatigue. Imbalanced gut bacteria or dysbiosis, leaky gut and parasites can often lead to an inflammation of the gut.
This is one of the reasons why there is such a high rate of child and adult ADHD. The neurochemicals which balance how we feel and think and process our moods are not produced in the correct ratios and quantities when you are suffering with a leaky gut, which then leads to a leaky brain and the inability to think, remember and concentrate. The use of ADHD medications like Ritalin and Concerta work to keep the dopamine and serotonin ‘alive’ for longer in the brain so that you are able to think, concentrate and focus appropriately in your environment. This is essential if your supply of neurochemicals is limited by a malfunctioning gastrointestinal tract. Fix the gut and the brain will also be repaired, no need for dangerous neurotrophic drugs to function.
Should you or one of your family members possibly look to benefit from a improved gut and Vagus nerve function, feel free to contact me and book for a FREE 15 MINUTE CONSULTATION to discover how I may assist you to become more healthy through the use of functional medicine and homeopathic treatment.