Anxiety and Your Gut health
Probiotics are bacteria that are good for our health and well being.
Recent studies have shown that restoring a good healthy balance of bacteria is one of the most effective ways to support mental health.
As naturopaths, we have always thought that the gut was central to everything, but we didn’t understand exactly how the gut microbiome signaled and communicated with the nervous system, but we are learning more every day. Gut bacteria play a role in not just gut health. They are important for increasing tryptophan and serotonin levels and reducing inflammation. Depression can be seen as inflammation of the brain.
Studies have already shown that people who suffer with anxiety often also display symptoms of gastrointestinal disorders, too, such as bloating, diarrhea, and irritable bowel syndrome. This provides significant evidence for a strong gut-brain link.
There are a lot of ingredients that naturally contain probiotics, such as Kombucha, Kefir, Korean kimchi, Sauerkraut, Japanese miso, pickles, and some dairy products like yogurt or fermented milks. Probiotic supplements are also widely available. Some strains are more suitable for different conditions and not all are useful and in a few instances can make matters worse.
On a final note, there is no benefit in putting these little creatures in if we do not feed them.
A diet high in fruits and vegetables will provide lots of fibre for them to survive and thrive.
If you would like any more information on which strains are more appropriate for which conditions contact me or ask your naturopath.