New Evidence Suggests that What You’re Putting in Your Mouth may be Hurting More than Your Waistline- It may Also be Hurting Your Brain
Everybody is aware of the benefits of healthy eating. However, as Ringwood chiropractor, Dr Tracey Lademann explains, new findings are suggesting that gut health may be far more important for brain functioning than we had originally thought.
Do you ever feel low of energy, depressed, anxious, stressed or unmotivated? You want to enjoy yourself and your food, but with so many diets out there to choose from, how are you supposed to know where to begin? New evidence is suggesting that our food choices may be affecting our brain, influencing how we experience chronic health conditions such as diabetes mellitus type 2, allergies, asthma, cancer and autism; as well as anxiety, depression, motivation and libido.
At Eastland Family Chiropractic, your Ringwood chiropractor takes a holistic approach to health, providing nutritional, lifestyle and musculoskeletal assessments and support. Call our practice now on 03 9095 7990 to arrange an appointment so we can get you living a healthier, happier life.
Scientists often refer to the gut as the body’s ‘second brain’, due to the immense number of nerves it possesses. Known as the enteric nervous system, it can largely self-regulate its own muscle contractions, immune response and hormone release. Gut bacteria also produce GABA and glutamate, which are abundant in healthy brains, and are often deficient in conditions such as anxiety, depression and Alzheimer’s. It also makes nearly 90% of the body’s supply of serotonin (the feel-good hormone), providing a possible explanation for why dietary changes seem more effective in treating depression than prescription medication for some patients.
Anatomically, the gut is connected to the brain via the vagus nerve, which controls many organ functions such as heart rate and digestion. Some gut microbes can activate this nerve. You may also be familiar with a condition known as leaky gut: where the cellular junctions in the intestinal lining become compromised. This allows particles from the gut to leak into the bloodstream, eliciting an inflammatory response. Chronic inflammation may lead to arthritis, eczema, allergies, autism, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. If these particles then get through the blood-brain barrier, it can cause serious brain trauma.
A link between gut microbes and neurodevelopmental conditions such as autism has also been suggested. Microbiologist Sarkis Mazmanian was awarded a MacArthur Grant for his breakthrough discovery, which found that when gut health is improved in mice with autism-like symptoms, they became less anxious, socialized more, and performed less repetitive movements. He has now hypothesized that controlled eating may be a viable treatment option for autistic-like disorders, or at least, result in an improvement in cognitive functioning and thus quality of life for these patients.
So if you wish that you had more energy and concentration; am sick of feeling anxious, stressed and depressed; or just want to minimize your risk of developing serious chronic health conditions later in life, call our practice now on 03 9095 7990 to arrange an appointment and start living a healthier, happier you.Leave a reply →