Gut + Brain Connection

Gut + brain connection

Alternative and Holistic Practitioner Middleton WI Gut and Brain Connection

While neurons are the body’s speedy messengers, shooting messages up to the brain and back in a matter of milliseconds, glands send hormone messages throughout the body slowly. Instead of quickly turning “off” and “on” like a neuron, an adjusting hormone often impacts several other hormones in the body, creating a cascade-like effect. Hormones affect everything from hunger to sex drive to sleep patterns. You can see how this can get messy, quick!

Hormones are created in many glands throughout the body, but did you know they are also created in and controlled by the gut? Cells that line the gut create hormones that then influence neurotransmitters needed all the way up in the brain. Ever have butterflies in your stomach? Have a gut feeling about something? That’s your gut microbiome talking! Your gut and brain are linked, and while there is much left to learn about the gut, there is a promising connection between mental health concerns and gut flora. Balancing your gut microbiome, can help balance your mental health!

What affects the gut?

Your gut is affected by how you were born and fed as an infant, the amount of exposure to dirt and antibiotics, your overall environment and lifestyle including diet as you grow (sugar and food sensitivities, antibiotic use in meats and dairy), physical movement, stress, pesticides, cleaners, beauty products, flame retardants, air quality, drinking water and water in the home, living indoors, who you are in contact with…everything! Ah!

Never fear! You can take steps every day to support the tiny bugs in your gut. This includes avoiding food sensitivities, processed foods, and seed oils, instead eating nourishing foods every day (including fermented foods). Focus on buying the cleanest food you can afford. Looking at the ingredients of beauty and cleaning products in the home is usually eye-opening, and being conscious of the use of antibiotics, hand sanitizers, and pesticides will help gut health. Getting outside in nature every day (your skin touching the ground if possible) and finding ways to lower your daily stress level will go a long way. That’s a lot of steps you can take to support your gut!