There has been a lot of research done within the last 10 years on the gastrointestinal tract (GI tract), and it is much more complex than most people realize. Your brain and your gut are very closely related, they work both together and independently. Your enteric nervous system lines your entire digestive tract, all the way from your esophagus down to your rectum. Because of this, your gut has millions and millions of nerve endings that connect your gut to your brain. Your gut has so much to do with your hormones, mental health, and overall well being that it is actually known as your Second Brain.
Have you ever wondered why you get butterflies in your stomach? Or why sometimes you get that “gut feeling” when something doesn’t seem right? Or why you get a stomach ache when you get nervous? This is all due to the Gut-Brain Connection.
Your gut is what digests and absorbs all the nutrients from your food, medications, and vitamins that you are taking. It then sends signals and releases hormones to communicate with your brain how it should feel based on the nutrients that it has received and how your gut is tolerating what you have just ingested, or on the other end, haven’t ingested.
If your gut isn’t balanced and working properly, it can actually cause an imbalance of hormones which can control your mood, increase stress levels, cause weight gain, acne, and the list goes on. This is why having a healthy gut is so critical to your health in so many different ways.
How can I improve my gut health?
There are many reasons why your gut may not be healthy, balanced and working properly. One of the main reasons being an unhealthy diet that includes many processed foods, artificial sugars, fast food, personal food sensitivities, etc. These can cause digestive distress such as gas, bloating, stomach discomfort, constipation, and diarrhea. A way to help improve your overall gut health whether you have digestive issues, mood swings, or need to lose some weight, is to eat foods that have probiotics to balance the good and bad bacteria that live inside of your gut.
Some foods that you should include in your diet that have probiotics are yogurt, sauerkraut, apple cider vinegar, kombucha, and other fermented foods. But not all probiotics are the same, there are many different types of probiotics that are beneficial for different things. So the best way to make sure that you are getting the right kinds of probiotics along with the right amounts is to take a high-quality probiotic supplement.