Feeling stressed at work? How’s your stomach?
It may sound like a strange question, but believe it or not, the bacteria in your gut is emerging as a huge player in the way your body reacts to stress and other mental ailments. The groundbreaking Human Microbiome Project has given scientists new insight into the way your stomach bacteria can affect your brain functions.
It turns out your stomach could have more to do with your battles with depression than you might think. In fact, those diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder often have Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth and reduced GI function, not to mention lowered good fatty acids. A good probiotic could be a big part of a comprehensive solution.
The benefits of good gut bacteria reach farther than previously thought. In one double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized parallel group clinical trial, healthy subjects were given a mixture of probiotics, and demonstrated “significantly less psychological distress than did matched controls.”
Feeling anxious? Try improving the ratio of good bacteria to bad bacteria.
A good probiotic is like a good soil. There are many of them on the market, but be careful which ones you choose – the best probiotics contain a diverse mix of good bacteria, and have actually been proven to create a 30% positive shift in overall stomach flora over 6 weeks.
When you reintroduce strains of good bacteria to help repopulate your gut, you could potentially improve your brain function and reduce stress. Remember those lowered good fatty acids associated with depression? The Perfect Pass Probiotic is the only supplement to increase short chain fatty acids by 40%.
But don’t stop at probiotics. Just like any good garden needs regular fertilization, a high-quality prebiotic (one that’s filler-free) acts as the “fertilizer” for that probiotic soil and preexisting good bacteria, feeding it with carbs so it thrives and multiplies into a diverse “garden” of strains. It’s made up of partially hydrolyzed guar gum, which is simply a compound made from the guar bean. In one study on the positive mental effects of prebiotics, “Subjects who took the prebiotics had lower levels of cortisol – a stress hormone which has been linked to anxiety and depression.”
There’s a reason why people who choose to live a healthier lifestyle – focusing on healthy eating, exercising, and rest – are also happier. Now, scientists are discovering that a healthy gut could unlock that happiness, and prebiotics and probiotics are becoming the key.