We can’t talk about brain health without looking into our gut and recognizing the relation between the brain and everything gut related. What happens in your gut/GI tract is essentially what happens in your brain. This has scientists calling the gut the 2nd brain! The gut and the brain are in a big time romance. They are entwined and can effect all of our bodily health, including brain function and how we feel everyday.
You’ve heard the term “having a gut feeling,” and well, it’s definitely something you can pay attention to. Our brains have hundreds of millions of neurons connected to our nervous system which control our gastrointestinal system.
What’s even more amazing is that within the GI tract, it is estimated this is where 80-90% of the body’s serotonin is made (that happy hormone!) So the brain operates our bodily functions, but the gut can also send messages to the brain.
Not convinced? Think about how certain foods affect how you feel, like chocolate. Chocolate releases endorphins in our gut and sends that “feeling good” message to our brain. Of course this can work the opposite way too. High fat processed foods for instance, can make us feel tired and sluggish. There is so much going on in brain-gut connection that I really encourage everybody to take note of how foods make them feel and maybe even keep a journal for reflection and assessment. This is obviously such a complex system, so if you are keen to research more, you might like this research manuscript I found that really delves into exactly how food controls the brain and cognitive health. It’s a big read but very interesting!
So to aid our gut health, which would also aid brain health is to not only eat healthy “rainbow foods” that I spoke of in the first part of this series, but also by adding fermented foods and kombucha into your diet. Both of which are perfect for assisting in balancing the gut flora. We have billions of bacteria living in our body, so we want to be sure that there is enough strong, good bacteria in there to keep viruses and fungi away. Which also helps to prevent disease. Adding 1 or 2 servings of kombucha or fermented foods daily can have a huge impact on your overall well-being, especially, of course on your brain health!
If you are interested in learning more about kombucha and even how to make your own, we have two upcoming workshops with Wolseley Kombucha. You can register here. Or you can always purchase a growler from us and fill it up at our Wolseley Kombucha tap, in-store!