New Scientific Discovery: Probiotics and Prebiotics May Hold the Key to Curing Neuropsychological Disorders

By on 05/29/2015
curing neurological disorders

Yes, you read that right…

A daily regimen of probiotics and prebiotics now holds great promise in treating and maybe even curing many brain-related neurological disorders!gut brain axis 1

Science has named this connection between bacterial gut health and mental health as the “gut-brain axis” and research is revealing astonishing links between the two, leaving many experts to call pre/probiotics the new prozac!

In the last few years the popularity of probiotics and prebiotics have skyrocketed and they are now considered as important to take as a daily multivitamin. This is because there are now proven links between having balanced, beneficial gut bacteria colonies and weight management, stronger immunities, allergy resistance, cholesterol reduction and even an increase in oral health… just to name a few!

While these benefits are amazing and well worth the investment in a high quality pre and probiotic, researchers are now realizing that this is just the beginning!

Studies are now revealing that healthy gut bacteria has just as great an influence on our neuropsychological (mental) issues as it does on our physical health.

Our brain is an organ after all, so it would make sense that its vitality also depends on our physical health, and with 1 in 4 adults now struggling with mental health problems, this discovery could not come at a better time!

One study on rodents in the lab showed that by simply modifying the gut bacteria, scientists could upset the emotional behavior and instinctive reflexes of those rodents. There was a direct link between gut health and mental health!

Also, a recent publication in the medical journal Neurpsychiatric Disease and Treatment states that the two-way communication we now know exists between gut bacteria and the brain is linked by the sympathetic, parasympathetic and enteric nervous systems. (You can read the full article here). These systems collectively control most of your body’s functions, both voluntary (ie: talking, smiling) and involuntary (ie: blinking, breathing).

With consideration to the “gut-brain axis,” this means the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems’ control of motility, blood flow, barrier function and immunity responses can be affected by the type of gut bacteria that exists in the body. Logically, when there is a healthy balance of gut flora, the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems operate at 100%, but when this delicate balance of gut flora is negatively affected, so are the vital functions of these nervous systems. In fact, researchers have even identified a specific nerve, the vagus nerve, as a main component of two-way communication between the brain and the microbes in the gut.gut brain axis

This same link holds true between gut health and the enteric nervous system. This system is a mesh-work of nerves that connect with and control the intestines, pancreas and gall bladder, and has also been shown to be directly affected by the type of bacteria present in the gut. Basically, it is safe to conclude that a happy gut equals a happy nervous system, which in turn means a happy, well-functioning body and mind. It’s all linked.

To summarize, the types and quantities of bacteria present in the gut directly affect the brain and its basic functions.

A direct link between gut bacteria and the brain has been proven and having “bad” gut bacteria can directly interfere with basic communications within the brain and nervous system, resulting in:

  • Metabolic disorders
  • Gastrointestinal disorders
  • Neuropsychological disorders

In fact, trials with various strains of probiotics have proven that supplementation of certain strains can positively affect one’s psychological state.

Specifically, Lactobacillus casei Shirota has been shown to positively affect mood and L. helveticus and L. helveticus can reduce anxiety and depression.
As far as prebiotics are concerned, preliminary results indicate that a proper dosage of oligosaccharides supplements can support a healthy level of stress hormones as well as the ability to maintain attention and focus.

If all of this research isn’t enough for you, how about we learn what one of the most reputable universities in the country has to say…

A study conducted at UCLA in 2013 confirmed that the “gut-brain axis” does evidently exist and can have both a positive or negative effect on a person’s neuropsychological and physical health. Their study found that prolonged ingestion of a fermented milk product with probiotics can indeed alter brain activity.

So, what have we learned today?

Probiotics and prebiotics can positively affect your mood as well as your psychological well-being.

probiotics

While scientists are still studying this new found link between the gut at brain, it is a very good idea to go out and get yourself some probiotics and prebiotics and add them to your daily routine. Look for a supplement that includes Lactobacillus casei, L. helveticus, and L. helveticus among its list of live cultures. Chances are you will have a happier body along with a happier mind!

About modernhealthproject

Hi there! This is my little blog project where I am trying to learn more about health, wellness and living a balanced life, while also sharing a bit of my silly side as well. By "silly" I mean sarcastic. And by "a bit" I mean way too much. Sorry about that.♥ - Anna

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

8,391 Spambots Blocked by Simple Comments

HTML tags are not allowed.