The link between gut health and the central nervous system. In the past, overall health was never associated with the gut. But the gut-brain axis, which is the two-way relationship between the gut (gastrointestinal tract) and the central nervous system, is hugely important. Signalling takes place between these and that signalling is now understood. The brain and the gut are connected and if one is healthy, so is the other. The brain affects the health of the gut and the gut affects the health of the brain. This is the gut-brain axis, the line that reaches from one to the other.
How do the gut and central nervous system connect?
The two organs are connected biochemically and physically. Neurons in the brain tell the gut how to behave and how to feel. Given the brain has 100 billion neurons, it can send a lot of messages. But most important is that the gut has millions of neurons, not 100 billion but a couple of million. If the two can talk to each other, so to speak, they can also be responsible for one another. People are encouraged to look after their guts, through diet and the appropriate supplements, and exercise, because the healthier the gut is, the healthier the messages that get through to the brain.
It is all a bit too scientific?
Of course, you do not need to get into the science of the gut-brain axis; you only need to know that it exists.
An easy way to understand this, and this is fascinating, is to consider “butterflies”. Think about when you were a child and used to get nervous and perhaps this happens to you as an adult too. You would get “butterflies”, an odd feeling in your stomach. How on earth does the gut get butterflies? The only way, if we look at science, is that the brain, the central nervous system, is sending a message to the gut to say:’ we feel nervous.’ If you can still your brain, you can still your gut. If you can keep your gut healthy, you can keep your brain healthy. The thing with health, in general, is that you do not have to get too scientific. You just have to make the connection between healthy eating and healthy living to a healthy mind and body. And that includes plenty of good hydration too.
Can you take supplements for the gut?
You can definitely take supplements for gut health. Probiotics are the most prescribed supplement for gut health and they do not require a doctor’s prescription. One can get probiotics as well as other gut health supplements from most natural supplement health stores as well as from certain pharmacists and even supermarkets. Read the instructions and follow the guidelines, and always have probiotics on hand in your medical cabinet. Take supplements but also eat well. Keep the gut health axis and, its importance, in your mind the whole time. The science of the gut-brain axis; you only need to know that it exists.