What we do and don't know about gut health
Gut microbiota has a major role to play in the health and function of the GI tract, with evidence that conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) often coincide with altered microbiota. But it also plays a much wider role in our health, and this is largely determined in the first few years of life.
SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:
We have always thought of ourselves as an organism. New studies point towards us being Superorganisms, with many organisms teaming up to become what we define as 'us'.
There are trillions of bacteria, virii, and fungi in our stomach, skin, and tissues, and they are collectively known as your Microbiome.
Our state of mind gets affected by our gut bacteria, which is part of our Microbiome.
Probiotics are live bacterial supplements and Prebiotics are the dietary fiber that promotes bacterial growth. In various experiments, scientists have been able to alter our stress response, anxiety levels and reduce mental health problems by administering Probiotics/Prebiotics in our stomach.
Psychobiotics is an upcoming class of medicines geared towards promoting psychological health through the alteration of your microbiota (Gut Bacteria).
Doctors have known since long that certain mental health problems do have their origin in the gut, like inflammation, but a detailed study on mice is now being done, with large-scale studies on humans in the offing.
Research found the following difference in stomach microbes of different individuals:
Due to the new kinds of microbes discovered in villagers, all the previous research on diet and microbes, which used the baseline data of the Western civilization microbe, thought to be the healthy and normal microbe, is now incorrect.
The Western world has stomach microbial communities that could digest junk food and might re-diversify and recover (to a limited extent) if we just ate more whole grains and veggies.
The brain and the gut are linked and in constant communication, and about 100 million nerve cells reside in the gut.
Gut bacteria produce dopamine and similar neurotransmitters that are critical for mood, anxiety, concentration, and motivation, explaining why stomach disorders upset our mood and emotions.
Exposure and consumption of good bacteria are essential for a balanced brain, as it reduces inflammation and makes us more resilient to depressive states and trauma.
These new findings point towards better ways of treatment for psychiatric disorders. It is essential to take care of your gut bacteria for better mental health and a sharper brain.