The gut-brain axis is a communication network between the gut and the brain.
The gut-brain axis includes both endocrine hormones, as well as the nervous system.
Your hypothalamus is the gatekeeper between your gut and your brain. It controls your feeding behavior and digestion through hormones. Research indicates that the gut microbiome can affect the development and regulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis. So the gut-brain axis is a two way street.
Studies also show an association between intestinal dysbiosis, which is basically an imbalance in your gut flora, and neurological and psychiatric diseases. We know that the microflora of your gut affects the way your brain functions. We also know that specific diets, the way you eat, and when you eat affects the balance of your gut microflora. That same microflora influences your cognitive function, your moods, and your metabolism. Your hypothalamus performs the fundamental role of integrating all the information that’s coming from the periphery of your body, especially from your gut.
Tissue inflammation, hormones, and the biochemicals coming from the gut affect your hypothalamus and brain function.
Your intestinal microflora affects your metabolism, or how fast you burn energy. Studies have found that when you transplant the microflora from an obese person into a thin person, the thin person will start to become overweight. That’s because the micro flora is affecting the metabolism at the level of the hypothalamus. We know that gut flora also affects your behaviors and moods, especially depression and anxiety. Your gut can actually make you anxious by revving up your HPA axis.
I had a patient come to me with severe anxiety. He had been suffering from panic attacks, insomnia, and generalized anxiety for months. His doctors had given him anti-anxiety meds, but he wanted off. He wanted his life back. I asked him if he had ever been treated with antibiotics. As a matter of fact, he had been treated for prostatitis with a long, heavy course of antibiotics twice. And afterwards, he had severe panic attacks that sent him to the emergency room.
The antibiotics killed off all of his gut bacteria, and without this beneficial bacteria, his gut began producing some anxiety-inducing hormones. His hypothalamus got wind of the havoc in his gut, and triggered his brain to go into survival mode. Without a real enemy to fight or flee, he experienced severe anxiety and panic attacks.
We healed his gut health with a regimen designed to eradicate the gangster microbes, repair his leaky gut lining, and replenish his beneficial gut flora. Plus, we healed his gut-brain axis by healing his hypothalamus with Genesis Gold®, so he no longer needed anti-anxiety medications.
It’s incredibly important to heal your gut and get back into balance.
It’s also important to support your hypothalamus in order to improve the communication between your gut and your brain, so that your moods, cognition, and metabolism are functioning optimally.
If you have any questions about the gut-brain axis, please join me in our Hormone Support Group, where you’ll get access through our free Hormone Reboot Training. I hope you’ll join us!