The Surprising Link Between Your Stomach and Mood
The stomach, your gut! It’s often referred to as our “second brain,” and with good reason. The idea behind the second brain derives from the fact that the need for food can force our actions. Specifically, hunger. It explains why we may feel weak, tired, angry, perhaps even a little cranky on an empty stomach. Research and science has evolved showing us hunger can not only make us act out of desperation, but subtle nutritional changes can also affect our moods.
But science has showed us that it isn’t all psychological. No, there are actual neurons that line the gastrointestinal lining. About 400 million of them. It’s a no-brainer then that what happens in our noggins may have an origin further south.
Research also shows us that gut health can play a strong role in our emotional state and functionality. Mood disorders like anxiety or depression, mental health and even the inability to make coherent decisions (otherwise known as brain fog) can be attributed to the health of your stomach.
In fact, it was commonly believed that gut problems were caused by the state of your mind. What we are recently finding out is the opposite. An unhappy belly might be causing you to have an unhappy mind.
Gut Bacteria on Your Mood
All bacteria isn’t bad for you. Probiotics are your go to here, but here’s a link where you can read more about it. Good gut bacteria is not only great for your digestive health, in fact you’d be surprised that trillions of bacteria in your belly can help you stay positive and be happy.
One study’s findings suggest that fueling your gut the right way can help you be more outgoing, and probiotics can further influence anger. In a manner, calming you down.
Your Gut and Depression
The working scientific theory on depression is that it revolves around an imbalance of one primary neurotransmitter – serotonin. 95% of the body’s serotonin is stored in your belly. Most common drugs that deal with serotonin re-uptake work with fluctuating levels of serotonin with drugs. Naturally, any drugs taken for depression should be prescribed by a physician in conjunction with therapeutic practices. In fact, foods that are naturally probiotic like yogurt (dahi) is also shown to alleviate anxiety.
Food to Feel GOOD
We’ve all felt it. The craving for a tub’a ice cream, some wings, pain puri… You name it, we’ve felt the craving for it. Not only does eating comfort foods bring about a sense of nostalgia and warmth, like popcorn at the cinema, but also the very nature of eating it makes you feel good. Warm, wholesome. It’s no surprise then that eating some good food give you the good juju feels! But remember junk food in moderation, try a cheat day for that added sense of accomplishment and extra good vibes.
Ayurvedic Foods for Gut Health
Arguably what you eat here could depend upon your dosha. It works on the premise of creating balance within your lifestyle not just your gut.
The Takeaway Food For Your Gut
It’s important to remember here that it’s not all in your head. Mental illness has been largely thought of as intangible and therefore not real. Often scoffed at and dismissed, science now backs up that mental health can be affected by a variety of factors one of which being the health of your stomach.