Is the Healthy Brain Gut Connection real? When was the last time you said, “I have a gut feeling?” You know that feeling in your gut when all the senses are stimulated. Have you ever wondered what the brain-gut connection is all about? Does it really affect mood, health, and just about everything else? Yes, it does, research now shows the connection between our gut and our brain is more apparent than we once thought.
An important feature of our digestive system is its role in the production of serotonin – the body’s natural “Feel Good Hormone” As a so called “second brain,” the gut communicates constantly with the brain, impacting our mood and perhaps even our decision-making. In fact, it’s estimated that 90 percent of our Serotonin is produced in the gut!
What are the necessary ingredients for a healthy digestive system? There never was a truer expression than, “You are what you eat.” Everything we do in life depends upon our digestive system’s ability to obtain nutrition from what we eat. So, pay attention to that gut feeling and keep stimulating that feel-good hormone!
The Mayo Clinic published a list of foods to ensure your levels of Serotonin are adequate.
Tips for Ensuring Adequate Serotonin Levels
Eat foods rich in calcium, magnesium, and vitamin B to help with serotonin production.
If you cannot get fresh, organic fruits and vegetables, opt for frozen over canned.
Omega-3, omega-6, and gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) are required for serotonin production. GLA is found in black currant seed, borage, evening primrose, and hemp seed oils.
Healthy carbohydrates and proteins help metabolize foods high in the agents responsible for serotonin production.
Avoid white flour and sugar carbohydrates. The boost they provide in serotonin levels is temporary and quickly followed by a crash.
Foods in which completely formed serotonin can be found include bananas, kiwis, pineapples, plantains, plums, tomatoes, and walnuts.
Foods rich in tryptophan include almonds, bananas, beans, cheeses (particularly Cheddar and Swiss), chicken, eggs, fish (especially high-oil fish such as herring, mackerel, salmon, sardines, and tuna), milk, peanuts, soy foods, turkey, and yoghurt.
Digestive enzymes and probiotic supplements can assist with full nutrient absorption from the above food sources, thereby increasing overall nutrient intake.
A Healthy Brain Gut Connection is an important element to consider in the search for a healthy lifestyle. Perhaps it’s the one that will make a difference to your health and wellness plan. The Mind- Body Connection is one routine that has the potential to achieve optimal results for overall well-being.
The Harvard School of Medicine has an article on the subject of Healthy Brain Gut Connection.
“A troubled intestine can send signals to the brain, just as a troubled brain can send signals to the gut. Therefore, a person’s stomach or intestinal distress can be the cause or the product of anxiety, distress, or depression. That’s because the brain and the gastrointestinal (GI) system are intimately connected”.