Why Gut health is the Cornerstone For Brain Health?

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The more we learn about the gut, its special intelligence becomes clear. A growing body of evidence suggests that the trillions of microbial inhabitants that live within us have a deep, complex relationship with our health and nervous systems, including our allergies, diabetes, and cancer, as well as, more mysteriously, with our brains and behavior.

This “brain in your gut” is transforming the scientific society’s familiarity with the connections between digestion, emotion, health, and even the way you think. Many scientists now refer to the gut’s neurons as “the second brain.”

Yet, a growing body of evidence links guts microbiota to gastrointestinal and extragastrointestinal illnesses. Dysbiosis and gut inflammation have been related to the development of numerous mental diseases, including anxiety and depression, which are common in today’s culture. 

Lactobacillus (probiotics bacteria type) generates GABA, which antianxiety medications like Valium and Xanax target. (Some researches claim Lactobacillus is effective.)

Bullet points

  • Inflammation harms mitochondrial function, causing excitotoxicity, oxidative stress, energy deficits, neuronal death, and even depression. Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus can also prevent inflammation from happening in the first place.
  • Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species produce GABA, which has a relaxing, stabilizing effect on the brain and may reduce social anxiety. Lactobacillus also creates acetylcholine, which improves mood and synaptic flexibility while reducing bad moods and aggression.
  • A large study of over 700 young adults discovered that eating fermented foods containing Lactobacillus and other beneficial microbes—a diet that includes kefir, sauerkraut, pickles, kimchi, and other similar foods—was specifically connected to significantly reduced social anxiety. (source),
  • Besides probiotics, high-quality kefir is also good B12, and the protein inside improves further. Fatigue, anemia, nausea, digestive disorders, weakness, skin infections, mental confusion, and nerve problems are eight symptoms of B12 deficiency.
  • Bacillus, Saccharomyces, and Escherichia produce norepinephrine, which increases alertness, arousal, and attention.
  • People who took probiotics had an increase in grey matter volume as well as improvements in brain activity.

First, Understanding Our Brain

The brain utilizes the most energy of any organ in the body; under normal physiological conditions, the brain generates ATP mostly from glucose. When glucose is scarce, such as during prolonged fasting, ketone bodies become an important energy source for the brain. 

Any mitochondrial damage and inflammation were related to cognitive problems. Research shows People with higher inflammation has cognition problem.

Inflammation Inhibits Brain Chemicals, Decreases BDNF production in Hippocampus.

Do you know that certain inflammation in your body leads to detrimental brain chemicals?

It’s critical to take brain inflammation seriously since it causes damage to and death of brain cells, speeding up the aging process and causing atrophy of the brain.  Studies showed on mice provide great insight into how the types of
bacteria in your gut can influence your inflammation levels.

Increasing amyloid beta levels in the brain increases your risk of developing dementia, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and other degenerative brain conditions. (source)

Based on the information available, there is significant evidence that depression, anxiety disorders, and inflammation are connected. (source)

Related: The Fastest and Most Effective Way to Get New Brain Cells

The Next Big Thing in Second Brain: Glutamate, GABA, And Serotonin

Probiotics assist in reducing inflammation. As we discussed, the body’s inflammation is regulated by the diversity and balance of gut bacteria. Healthy concentrations of diverse beneficial microorganisms constrain the synthesis of inflammatory chemicals in the body and the brain. When it happens, you can improve the positive chemicals such as GABA, Serotonin, and BDNF.

Optimize GABA For Lower Anxiety

GABA is an amino acid that functions as a neurotransmitter in the central nervous system and is produced by gut bacteria. The primary chemical messenger in your brain regulates nerve activity by blocking transmissions and restoring regular brain waves. 

Glutamate, another important neurotransmitter synthesized by gut bacteria, has a role in almost every aspect of normal brain function, including cognition, learning, and memory.

Using animal models, they investigated how healthy gut bacteria can produce key brain chemicals such as BDNF, gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), and glutamate. (source)

If you don’t get familiar with BDNF protein, I would suggest the check it out:  

Related: Reprogram Your Brain With Repetition And Neuroplasticity

  • Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species release GABA, which has a relaxing, stabilizing impact on the brain and may lessen social anxiety. Lactobacillus also creates acetylcholine, which improves mood and synaptic flexibility while suppressing negative moods and aggressiveness.
  • Some microorganisms have also been shown to generate dopamine and norepinephrine. For example, Bacillus, Saccharomyces, and Escherichia produce norepinephrine, which triggers dopamine production and adrenalin. 
  • According to a number of studies, Lactobacillus (L.) rhamnosus is beneficial to GABA production, which in turn helps to alleviate anxiety. (source)
  • In addition to this, it has been discovered that caffeine can alter GABA receptors and reduce the inhibitory (GABAergic) action. Researchers have also discovered that manipulating these neurotransmitters results in neurobehavioral impacts. (source)

If we deep rive into brain chemicals, we found that depressed people tend to have low norepinephrine levels in the brain. Also, this is the reason why a cold shower improves mood. It increases norepinephrine.

Bacterial Strain Neurotransmitter
Lactobacillus rhamnosus (YS9)GABA
Lactobacillus. delbrueckiisubsp. bulgaricus (PR1)
Monascus purpureus (CCRC 31615)
Streptococcus salivarius subsp. thermophilus (Y2)

Related: Second Brain: Our Microbiome Effect Our Mood, And Well-Being

Happy Hormones: Serotonin And Gut-Brain Axis

Serotonin regulates both anxiety and aggressiveness, as well as memory and mood. You might be shocked to learn that the nerve cells in your gut produce between 80 and 90 percent of the serotonin in your body.

Then there’s Streptococcus, Escherichia, and Enterococcus spp., along with species of Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium, and Lactococcus, which are all involved in the production of soothing serotonin or serotonin receptors (5-HT) in the brain and throughout the nervous system, including the vagus nerve.

When microbe-made neurotransmitters are in the bloodstream, they can transmit across the brain-blood barrier to the hypothalamus, which regulates the stress response (HPA axis).

These microbes are important for our kids. Why? Different combinations of microorganisms throughout a child’s life result in different amounts of neurotransmitters such as GABA and serotonin, affecting the child’s synapses and personality.

HormoneFunctionEffect
OxytocinSocial hormoneincreases the feeling of trust and commitment, reduces stress
SerotoninHappiness hormoneimproves mood, reduces feelings of anxiety
DopamineMotivation And Reward
hormone
strengthens the inner drive and motivation,
Adrenaline and noradrenalineCourage hormonesensure short-term, positive stress, increase concentration and the willingness to act
EndorphinsEnergy and Pain relief hormonesinhibit the perception of pain, increase motivation
PhenylethylamineLove hormoneincreases the feeling of pleasure and the feeling of being in love

Serotonin is a precursor to melatonin; the pineal gland needs serotonin to produce melatonin. The healthier the serotonin levels, the more likely we will also have healthy melatonin levels.

Oxytocin is Love Hormone

 Oxytocin hormone, also known as the ‘love hormone’ in society, can affect behavior, especially in women, and can show itself with powerful effects. 

Oxytocin can induce anti-stress-like effects such as reducing blood pressure and cortisol levels and increasing nitric oxide production, which helps blood vessels relax, stimulate the vagus nerve and improves blood circulation.

  • The cerebral cortex, specifically the anterior insular cortex, is important for empathy. Oxytocin improves empathy behavior in healthy men.
  • Oxytocin can effectively inhibit fear responses by inhibiting amygdala activation and increasing confidence and courage-like behavior.

L. reuteri increases the number of cells in the brain that produce oxytocin, the neurotransmitter produced during touching, kissing, and bonding. Meanwhile, L. salivarius and L. farciminas have been shown to reduce stress hormone (corticosteroid) synthesis.

In general, serotonin and GABA calm and soothe, whereas dopamine motivates, oxytocin bonds, and acetylcholine stimulates.

Related:  Why Does Our Microbiome Effect Our Mood?

Other things can help to increase Oxytocin

  • Socializing, Communicating, Friendships, and Social-support can help release Oxytocin hormone.
  • Being kind to others is excellent for increasing boosting Oxytocin. University of British Columbia study found that people who performed acts of kindness were significantly happier than those who did not.
  • Sexual interaction and orgasm increase hormone secretion; yet, better orgasms will lead to a more oxytocin level, bond, and happiness, even improving immunity in women.
  • For men, boosting testosterone levels may help you better orgasm, improve libido and self-confidence, reduce depression, and allow you to feel more energized throughout the day. Optimizing Testosterone also helps enhances mitochondrial muscle biogenesis, which helps your cells and immunity,  potentially slowing down the aging process.
  • Most activities that tend to increase Oxytocin are wrestling or Brazilian jiu-jitsu. While wrestling and Brazilian jiu jitsu, you are hugging and touching people, leading to subconscious interaction with others and learning how to defend yourself while still enjoying exercise. Isn’t it good?
  • Owning a Pet: One of the ways simple ways to increase Oxytocin is to have a pet. Pets are great for lowering cortisol levels and funny creatures!
  • Various studies have also proved that falling in love increases hormones such as dopamine and Oxytocin. 

Also, nipple stimulation helps increase oxytocin levels in a woman or even a man. Furthermore, if you want to better orgasm and improve erectile functions, you might try prostate massage with a partner; why?

Prostate massage is commonly used for sexual pleasure because it’s referred men’s G point. However, it may also help men with enlarged prostates, prostatitis, and other conditions. It enhances blood flow to the prostate, allowing the gland to create a fluid that combines with sperm and boosts circulation.

For more information about oxytocin: Here Are The Effects Of Oxytocin On Trust, Love, and Sexuality

How might these gut signals reach the brain?

Some microorganisms or their chemical components cross the blood-brain barrier.

Evidence shows intermittent fasting may help your gut health and boost your microbiota via fighting candida, stimulating autophagy, and adrenalin, which helps your cells and gut microbiota.

Intermittent fasting is a method of eating where you vary between times of fasting and eating as normal. However, fasting is also crucial to improve metabolic energy, promote blood sugar control by reducing insulin resistance, and increase AMPK activation. That reason, Dry fasting is the greatest strategy for weight reduction, gut health, and autophagy.

When it comes to probiotics fermented foods, high-quality kefirs ( you can go with organic goat milk, which is low lactose and digestible casein type ) is the best type you can find.

Why are Kefir’s probiotics my favorite for optimizing intestinal bacteria?

Kefir’s probiotics and yeast increase the balance of beneficial bacteria in the stomach, helping to relieve constipation. In animal models, kefir improved the gut microbiome, and human research show it might boost mood, such as reducing social anxiety. (source)

Kefir contains tryptophan, and an essential amino acid thought by experts to have a calming effect on the neurological system via the precursor of serotonin.

Lastly, kefir increased levels of Lactobacillus reuteri, and remember that linked to an increase in the ability to make the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)

Kefir typically contains more than 50 probiotics and bacteria that are safe to take and help to boost the gut microbiota for better digestion. Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Streptococcus thermophilus, Lactobacillus delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus, Lactobacillus helveticus, Lactobacillus kefiranofaciens, Lactococcus lactis, and Leuconostoc species are among the probiotic bacteria identified in kefir preparations.

The Way Of Optimizing Gut Bacteria Without Any Supplement

  • Homemade bone broth: Homemade bone broth improves intestinal health. Why? Bone broth promotes intestinal health due to L-glutamine, fights inflammation, maintains joint health due to collagen, aids weight reduction, and enhances sleep (thanks to Glycine) and cognitive function.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar: ACV’s acidity improves protein and mineral digestion in the stomach. Acidic conditions may help prevent harmful microorganisms.
  • Cruciferous veggies: Gut bacteria break down cruciferous vegetable fiber into short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), and SCFAs have been demonstrated to reduce your risk of inflammatory disorders as well as inhibit Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), the bacteria thought to cause gastric ulcers. However, do not overconsume cruciferous veggies because the way your thyroid utilizes iodine may be affected by cruciferous foods, including broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and kale. Make sure to take enough iodine in your diet or add supplements.
  • Exercise And Gut Bacteria: Don’t be surprised to hear that exercise can alter the gut’s good bacteria. According to recent research, exercise may increase the quantity of beneficial microbial species, diversify the microflora, and boost the growth of gut flora. (source)

Don’t be surprised that a Harvard-led study found that 15 elite athletes have increased numbers of specific gut bacteria species that prefer lactic acid as a fuel source. This will helps you better athletes’ performance.

Also, They discovered that the microbiomes of the runners had much more of a specific bacterial strain known as Veillonella atypical.

Chewing For Better Gut Health

If you chew your meal more properly, you might be able to change the release of certain hormones in your stomach that control your hunger.

  • By chewing food more completely, you may be able to inhibit the production of ghrelin, the hormone that is responsible for triggering feelings of hunger.
  • It is possible that more thorough chewing will boost the release of GLP-1, a hormone that decreases the emptying of the stomach and creates a feeling of fullness.

Chewing might reduce appetite and food intake by altering gut hormone responses associated to appetite.

Gut, And Oral Health: Does your dental health affects gut health?

Did you know bad oral bacteria inhibits the stomach’s capacity to fight illness?

Bacteria from the mouth can enter the circulation and destroy the beneficial bacteria in your gut. The body responds to harmful oral bacteria by activating an immune system response, which causes an increase in inflammation biomarkers in the body. An unhealthy balance of bacteria in the mouth has long been known to trigger inflammation in periodontal disease. (source)

Treponema denticola and Porphyromonas gingivalis are the two most prevalent dangerous bacteria connected to gum disease. Also these bacteria can grow quickly, survive without oxygen, and are fed by sugar. They negatively affect your gums and damage the beneficial microorganisms in your mouth.

Your gums act as a barrier, preventing inflammation that might harm your health. In addition, gum disease has been related to a variety of health issues, including diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and premature or low-birth weight kids.

Source – https://www.webmd.com/oral-health/features/health-perils-of-gum-disease

Avoid High Dosage fluoride From Tap Water And Toothpaste.

  • Avoid fluoride exposure from toothpaste: As fluoride can pass both the placental and blood-brain barriers and produce neurotoxicity in people, also animal studies have found that fluoride impairs the effect on memory and learning the rats.
  • Best way to optimize your mouth bacteria is through oil pulling. According to recent studies, oil pulling (swishing oil in your mouth for 10 to 20 minutes) with coconut oil may reduce bad bacteria in the mouth, prevent gingivitis and tooth decay, and eliminate bad breath.
  • Did you know more than any other body area, the pineal gland builds up fluoride from tap water, toothpaste, and pesticides? They build up into “crystals”, after which they “calcify,” or create a hard outer layer that people called them “pineal gland calcification.” which might lower the secretion of anti-aging sleep hormones melatonin and DMT.
  • Fluoride at high doses significantly changed the diversity of gut flora. A high fluoride intake may increase the harmful bacteria, which leads to an immunity and,  inflammatory response(source)

However, optimize your iodine level because it helps flush fluoride from the body, and also you can use high-quality curcumin for fluoride toxicity as well as lower CRP (inflammation biomarkers) levels in the body.

Avoid artificial sweeteners at all costs because they damage your oral, gut, and brain health(Aspartame functions as a chemical stressor by increasing plasma cortisol levels and triggering free radicals, leading to mitochondrial damage and impair brain functions by lowering the amount of energy going to hippocampus area)

According to a study, diet soda and some sports drinks with artificial sweeteners showed a detrimental impact on teeth; even sugar-free drinks can actually soften dental enamels by more than 30%

Artificial Sweeteners Change Gut Bacteria

There are several reasons why people are concerned about containing artificial sweeteners instead of real sugar isn’t the best alternative when it comes to gut bacteria, inflammation, and digestion.

According to one research, artificial sweeteners such as “aspartame” might cause glucose intolerance by affecting gut flora. The study suggests that artificial sweeteners cause dysbiosis and metabolic problems.

In the first time, scientists have discovered a link between aspartame’s influence on insulin tolerance and the diversity of the friendly gut flora.

  • TNF-alpha, an inflammatory protein, was elevated in the aspartame-fed animals due to a systemic inflammatory response to aspartame.
  • Not just aspartame, sucralose also altering gut bacteria. According to a study, Sucralose administration affected the gut microbiome of mice, reducing the number of beneficial microorganisms.

A healthier alternative sweetener than aspartame and sucralose

Low-calorie sweeteners such as Stevia and erythritol are a highly popular ketogenic and holistic health community; another low-calorie alternative and amazing taste sugar alcohol is called xylitol.

Xylitol feels and tastes almost identical to sugar. As a result, many diabetics prefer xylitol over other sweeteners after shifting away from regular sugar.

Effects of Glyphosate on Gut Health And Brain Health

Glyphosate, the active herbicide chemical, may make it harder for your body to manufacture proteins that work properly and disrupt the shikimate pathway (found in gut bacteria), affecting gut health and microbial population.

Glyphosate binds to important minerals, disrupts the synthesis and transport of sulfate, interferes with the synthesis of aromatic amino acids (phenylalanine, tyrosine, and tryptophan) and methionine, which can cause a loss of folate and neurotransmitters, acts as an antibiotic, slows down methylation pathways, and stops the pituitary gland from releasing stimulating thyroid hormone, causing hypothyroidism.

Glyphosate depletes these crops of critical minerals called manganese, which is necessary for numerous bodily processes.

  • Anxiety
  • Mitochondrial dysfunction
  • Parkinson’s disease,
  • Celiac disease,
  • Bile Production problems
  • immunological dysregulation

One of the major effects of manganese deficiency caused by glyphosate is high levels of inflammatory activity in the brain. Manganese is required for certain pathways to function in the brain, and a deficiency leads to increased immune activation and high levels of inflammatory cytokine release.

As well as infertility has all been related to glyphosate and low manganese.

How To Get Rid Of Glyphosate Toxicity?

  • Golden Milk: Golden milk is a hot or cold drink made with turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, honey, and your choice of milk. Golden milk’s anti-inflammatory effects may help prevent and fight cancer, control inflammation, and manage weight. It’ll also help get rid of toxins such as Glyphosate.
  • Chlorella: Chlorella may help eliminate glyphosate from the GI tract. (source) What is good about that Chlorella has been reported to bind with heavy metals such as lead, arsenic, mercury, and aluminum, and it also aids in liver detoxification and glyphosate.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar: You can use organic, unpasteurized apple cider vinegar, which includes acetobacter, which can break down glyphosate and helps for a glyphosate detox. Also, Eliminate glyphosate.
  • Milk Thistle: Milk thistle protects the liver, which helps it battle the damage caused by glyphosate and other toxic pollutants thanks to the stimulation of glutathione production.
  • N-Acetyl Cysteine(NAC): NAC helps to replenish glutathione levels in the body with glutamine and glycine. NAC is strong; studies showed that  NAC could chelate toxic metals in 33 animal studies. 
  • Glycine: You need to saturate your Glyphosate level body with glycine. Glycine supplementation and eating garlic and cruciferous vegetables, which are good sources of sulfur, can help detoxify glyphosate.

Effects of Sugar on Gut Health: Why Does Sugar Harm Your Gut Health?

Sugar feeds bad bacteria and yeast such as candida, and candida thrives on diets high in sugar and processed foods, so the more you eat these foods.

Candida yeast damages your intestines, causing a leaky gut. As Candida enters the bloodstream, it releases toxins. As a result, you may experience various negative emotions and mental states, such as irritability, moodiness, anxiety, and sadness. Depression is associated with Candida albicans infections. (source)

Candida overgrowth in your gut has been linked to many different health problems, such as yeast infections, fatigue, poor memory, depression, headaches, and a strong desire for sugar. Candida overgrowth usually happens when your body is too acidic from eating too much processed food or sugar or when it doesn’t have enough healthy bacteria.

Meditation heals the gut in a way that goes beyond probiotics.

 Meditation Turns Off “Bad” Genes, supports longevity genes such as telomeres and DNA methylation level.

Surprisingly, meditation has beneficially changed more than 1,000 genes, particularly lowering the protein complex arsonist (NF-kB), which is responsible for autoimmune and inflammatory disorders, including diabetes and Crohn’s disease.

In a 2017 meta-analysis of 45 trials, several additional studies have examined mindfulness meditation’s neurological benefits. According to a study, Meditation lowered cortisol, C-reactive protein, blood pressure, heart rate, lipids, and tumor necrosis factor-alpha. (source)

Lowering cortisol can directly influence and change the gut bacteria population, which affects neurotransmitters levels in the brain.

Hence mindful meditation helps manage gut bacteria via supporting stress response, suppresses chronic inflammation and boosting mitochondria biogenesis, and maintains a healthy gut barrier function.

Summary

There are numerous bacteria within us, and their impact on physical and mental health is immense. For our purposes, it seemed reasonable to begin with the categories that have received the most attention and are the most important to us.

Neuroscience discovers that inflammation may also affect our brain, synapses pathway, and neurons. Proinflammatory cytokines, proteins released by white blood cells, may indirectly inhibit the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that helps us feel calm. They also affect the creation of dopamine, a hormone that helps us stay motivated.

Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus can also help to avoid inflammation in the first place. They (and other lactic-acid-producing gut bacteria) leave behind a sticky fatty-acid sludge when they break down or ferment the food we ingest.

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