Nov 15 2020

Low-stress levels are good for your gut and a healthy gut is good for your mood

Published by at 12:46 pm under probiotic supplements,Stress

Low-stress levels are good for your gut and a healthy gut is good for your mood.

Science shows that there is a direct correlation between gut bacteria and brain chemistry.(1,2)*

So you’ve got stress in your life. Don’t we all! If we all survive this year, I’m pretty sure we can survive anything. This year could be coined the ‘Year of Stress’ and it would be an accurate description. But from a health perspective, it is no joke. Stress really does impact our microbiome and our health as a whole. 

Stress affects our gut bacteria. And, the health of the gut can affect our physical and mental health. The amount of stress you have in your life can have a direct impact on gut bacteria beginning a vicious cycle of poor gut health caused by stress which then in turn leads to more mental duress. Paying close attention to this fact and treating your microbiome with care and eliminating as much stress as possible can really benefit our long term health.(1,2)**

So while the bacteria residing in our guts can help stabilize and even boost our mood and our mental health, it can also hurt it and make it worse. There are numerous studies that have demonstrated that psychological stress suppresses beneficial bacteria in the microbiome. “…When the body experiences stress, it causes a cascade of events that are designed to help us escape imminent danger. It shuts down non-essential activities like sexual desire, reproduction and digestion, and uses chemical messengers to direct its resources and energy to the brain and muscles. This has repercussions for the gut microbiome too…”(1,2)*

When we have an unbalanced or unhealthy microbiome, it can directly affect our mood because unfriendly bacteria can play a part in anxiety and stress by the way they behave in the gut. When the balance of friendly bacteria is favorable, they can play a positive role by “…enhancing our resilience to stressful events…”but if the ecosystem is not balanced or is in a state of dysbiosis, their activities can play negatively on our mental health.2*

“…Research has found that tweaking the balance between beneficial and disease-causing bacteria in an animal’s gut can alter its brain chemistry and lead it to become either bolder or more anxious. The brain can also exert a powerful influence on gut bacteria; as many studies have shown, even mild stress can tip the microbial balance in the gut, making the host more vulnerable to infectious disease and triggering a cascade of molecular reactions that feedback to the central nervous system…”1*

When the microbiome is in a state of dysbiosis, it means that the gut microbiome “…is not able to control the growth and activities of opportunistic bacteria. When these microbes are too abundant, their activities can cause inflammation by triggering the body’s immune system…” This inflammation affects the central nervous system which can lead to symptoms of depression. Depression in and of itself can result in inflammation. 2*

Additionally, the human gut is often referred to as the “second brain” because it is the only organ in our bodies that actually has its own independent nervous system. Over ninety percent of the body’s serotonin production takes place here. With an intricate network of 100 million neurons embedded in the gut wall, the gut continues to function even after the vagus nerve, which connects the gut to the brain, is severed as demonstrated in mice studies. 1*

Serotonin regulates mood, happiness, and anxiety. Low serotonin levels are linked to depression. “…Gut bacteria also produce hundreds of neurochemicals that the brain uses to regulate basic physiological processes as well as mental processes such as learning, memory, and mood.1*

The microbiome plays such a fascinating and systemic role in our bodies. Poor physical and mental health caused by stress and an unhealthy gut requires us to take action to break the vicious cycle. It is up to us to take a proactive role in tipping the balance not only to lower the amount of stress we have but also to ensure we have a balanced microbiome. Concentrate on positive activities such as exercise, meditation, being outdoors, and healthy cooking over negative activities such as worrying about things you can’t control, too much screen time to include social media and 24-hour news, drinking too much alcohol, or other negative lifestyle behaviors. Focus your diet towards the healthy foods that boost your microbiome and don’t stray from your daily dose of Body Biotics™ Bio-Identical SBO Probiotics Consortia™.*

Hang on as 2020 is almost over. Focus on the things you can control, and the rest, well…let it go!

Healthiest wishes,

Kelli

www.bodybiotics.con

 

 

Resources:

  1. https://www.apa.org/monitor/2012/09/gut-feeling
  2. https://atlasbiomed.com/blog/stress-anxiety-depression-microbiome/
  3. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352289516300509
  4. https://www.cell.com/cell-reports/pdf/S2211-1247(20)30273-4.pdf

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