How Emotions Affect Gut
There is a reason you should listen to your gut. Feeling the “butterflies in your stomach” or “gut-wrenching” pain links between digestive tract, mood and mental health. Every feeling that we go through connects to our gut health and vice versa. Gut health and mental health are so intertwined that it has been a source of debate for years to choose whether the gut influences emotions or if it is the other way around.
Experts believe that the gut is our second brain or scientifically known as the (ENS) Enteric Nervous System (ENS). This system is divided into two layers, each with more than 100 million nerve cells lining that starts from the esophagus, then to the gastrointestinal tract to the rectum. These areas govern the major decisions connected to the proper functioning of the body.
Besides these, the presence of millions of bacteria in the gut can impact overall health. These bacteria known as microbiota affects physical and emotional well-being. As early as 1915, Walter Cannon, an influential physiologist Walter Cannon confirmed that stomach functions are changed in animals when frightened. This condition holds for humans. Hence, it is why those who stress a lot report having stomach pains and digestive issues.
How the brain communicates with the gut
The brain and gut use a network of neural, hormonal and immunological messages to communicate. However, this healthy dynamic can be disrupted when we suffer chronic gut inflammation, stress, depression and or other mental health problems. Stress can impact the type of bacteria that lives in the gut, disrupting the diversity of the gut flora and attracting harmful bacteria. It increases our risk of bowel inflammation and vulnerability to infection.
When we suffer chronic inflammation in the gut, our sensitivity to positive emotions may lessen. Our brains become rewired when we feel suffer illnesses especially gut issues. Feeling anxious and depressed are common among people with chronic bowel issues. More so, they report feeling anxious and sad for an extended period.
The role of the gut’s brain
The ENS is responsible for controlling digestion, nutrient absorption and waste elimination. People coping with digestive and bowel problems may trigger big emotional shifts. Research suggests that the gut may trigger signals to the Central Nervous Systems that impact the mood.
With how closely the gut and brain communicate, it is no surprise why you might feel like throwing up before a major event or feel gut pain at times of stress.
Taking care of your gut and managing your emotions
Experts have shown that gut health impacts beyond physical and mental health. Our gut health when compromised can trigger many chronic diseases including cancer. Thus, it is important to take care of our gut health for our overall well-being. Here are doable steps you can do to protect your gut:
Watch what you eat
Besides consuming a high fibre diet, you must also limit your intake of highly processed and junk foods. A high-fibre diet helps keep the food moving through the digestive tract and prevent constipation. On the other hand, digesting highly-processed food can put a strain on your digestive tract. Processed foods are broken down more easily into sugar that can potentially harm your gut.
Take probiotics and prebiotics
Probiotics can help increase the number of good bacteria in the gut and maintain the diversity of the gut bacteria. You can take probiotic supplements or eat yogurt, kefir, kimchi, fresh sauerkraut, kombucha, etc. Prebiotics also support healthy bacteria in the gut. A few sources of prebiotics include a variety of raw fruits, vegetables, and bananas, oats, onions, and legumes.
Manage your stress
As mentioned, your mood can directly affect your digestive tract. A few ways you can do to manage stress include meditation, yoga, journaling, and going outdoors.
Limit alcohol and caffeine
These diuretics are digestive stimulants that can affect the digestive process negatively. These bad vices interfere with the natural digestion of your body.
Regular workout boosts the mood, manage weight, and gets the colon moving. Physical activities can also help manage irritable bowel symptoms.
Try colonic irrigation
Colonic irrigation or colonic cleanse is a safe and effective method involving flushing the colon with approximately 16 gallons of water. A certified colonic hygienist does the procedure to remove the toxins and other waste materials encrusted around the colon. Colonic cleanse is an effective procedure for people with digestive issues. Besides optimising the digestive tract, a colonic cleanse can boost the mood, improve focus, provide mental clarity, help in weight loss. Doing colonic cleanse can also increase your body’s ability to absorb nutrients and vitamins.
The connection between the brain and gut health has been established and supported by various studies. As these two are intertwined, you should look after your gut and mental health. Following these tips above can help preserve and optimise the function of the digestive tract. Furthermore, colonic cleanse not only boosts the mood but also delivers tons of health benefits. Contact us to learn more about colonic irrigation.