So yesterday we spoke about Dehydration being the first factor in Stress, Emotions, Anxiety, Mood Swings and Depression.
Today we're going to talk about the second factor to Stress. And that would be "Probiotics". That's right! Those little microorganism "good guys" that are our defense system for our Intestinal tract. And we know this because of the massive advertising we see everyday for our Gut and Digestive tract health. But did you know they can also affect our brain and emotions?
Well . . . let me explain. Hydration and Probiotics (our good bacteria) go hand in hand to improve brain function. And as we know from yesterdays Health Tip, the amount of water in your body has a direct effect on the condition of your brain and emotions. And that even mild dehydration may cause certain brain functions to run less efficiently.
Drinking water is also important for your digestion. It not only keeps the food you eat moving through your intestines, it also keeps your intestines smooth and flexible. It helps to make for a perfect environment for our "good" bacteria to do their job.
But where do Probiotics fit into this puzzle of the mind?
One of the biggest benefits of probiotics (good bacteria) is their effect on anxiety, depression, and other mental health disorders. Research has found that probiotics may also help boost mood and cognitive function. So Probiotics not only supports a healthier gut and our immune system, but a healthier brain and mind too.
So how does all that happen.? Well . . . our gut bacteria (which is our "good" bacteria and what Probiotics replenish) can both, directly and indirectly influence "Serotonin" levels. Now, Serotonin is a chemical that nerve cells produce and they send signals between nerves. A nerve communication highway!
If we have a "shortage" of Serotonin, you can have a sad depressed mood, low energy, sleeping problems, memory loss, negative thoughts, a feeling of being tense and irritable, crave sweets and even have a reduced interest in sex. All righty then . . .
So what's the connection between the digestive tract and brain.? You see . . . Serotonin is primarily found and manufactured in the enteric nervous system located in the gastrointestinal tract (GI tract or your Gut). About 90% of our serotonin supply is found in the digestive tract and in blood platelets.
With approximately 40 million brain cells in our head, most are influenced either directly or indirectly by serotonin. And as I just stated . . . This includes brain cells related to mood, sexual desire and function, appetite, sleep, memory and learning, temperature regulation and some social behavior.
And if there's a glitch with the chemicals from which serotonin are made . . . it can lead to depression as well as obsessive-compulsive disorder, anxiety, panic and even excess anger.
But . . . remember this . . . not all probiotics are equal and they "all don't" make it to our intestines to do their job correctly. (This is another Health Tip for another day)
So let's break it down on how to relieve some of this stress that we're experiencing in today's crisis.
Here are 2 of the missing pieces to the puzzle of Emotions.
1. Dehydration causes an increase in the hormone "Cortisol", better known as the "Stress" hormone or the "Belly Fat Producer", which causes anxiety and depression
Dehydration also impairs our immune system and our ability to SUPPORT our "good bacteria" in our digestive tract.
2. Probiotics boost the digestive tract and its manufacturing of "Serotonin" production to calm the fires within us such as depression, anxiety, panic and anger.
It's simple when you break it down!
So what are we going to do in this crisis of captivity and pandemic?????
DRINK MORE WATER AND TAKE YOUR PROBIOTICS!!!!
Tomorrow we'll breakdown how to accomplish our mission of being "Hydrated". (Special thanks to Pat for her great question)
And as always SHARE this important information.
If you'd like more information feel free to contact me here