Have you ever wondered whether your mental health is linked to your gut health?
Have you experienced gut-wrenching times, or do certain situations make you feel nauseous or cause butterflies in your stomach?
This gut/brain connection is very real, and each aspect can offset each other.
The gut-brain axis is known as the physical and chemical connections between the gut and the brain. The gastrointestinal tract is sensitive to emotion. There has been recent and current emerging evidence that has linked several mental and developmental disorders to the gut microbiome. The gut microbiome refers to the microbes in the intestine, acting as a crucial organ for one’s health.
A myriad of things can cause the above such as anger, anxiety, stress and sadness to name a few. These feelings can trigger symptoms in the gut. This is also important to be aware of in times when we might be feeling symptomatic, whether it could be experiencing heartburn or abdominal pain or cramps, or even loose stools, this could be due to your body dealing with stress. Always discussing these issues in collaboration with a Dietitian and your GP can ensure that you are on the right track with managing symptoms if these are troubling you.
People with functional GI disorders such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome perceive pain more acutely than the average population as their brain is more responsive to pain signals from the gastrointestinal tract, and in some circumstances, stress can make this existing pain appear to be worse than what it is.
It is so important to ensure that we are always treating our body like a temple and ensuring that we are consuming a healthy and balanced diet, especially high in whole grains, probiotics, prebiotics and everything in between. This allows for our gut health to flourish and to be as happy as it can be through everyday life, and through times when you might be doing it tough.