Have you noticed how your mood changes when you are hungry? Your hunger pangs make you hangry and borderline dangerous. Sometimes, you just can’t focus on your work if you are hungry or have an upset stomach. There are also times when you feel your emotions in your gut, like those butterflies in the tummy or feeling sick in the stomach when you get emotional or scared. Wondered how your gut manages to pull off so much drama?
Our body has a second brain, i.e., the brain inside the gut. The second brain, called the enteric nervous system (ENS), communicates directly with the brain in the head. These brains talk to each other! Who thought our body was so intelligent, right?! Understanding our body and its functions is essential to establish a healthy sync. So let’s dive in!
What is Brain-Gut Axis?
There is a physiological and chemical connection between the body's two brains, the central nervous system (CNS) and the enteric nervous system (ENS). Scientists and doctors call this the brain-gut axis; we call it mind-blowing! The gut (ENS) sends signals and messages to the brain (CNS) and vice versa. According to Jay Pasricha, M.D. and director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Neurogastroenterology, the main role of ENS or the gut brain is to control digestion, from swallowing to releasing enzymes that help with nutrient absorption to waste elimination. Recent research shows that ENS may be responsible for an individual's mental and emotional well-being. While doctors and researchers thought for decades that anxiety, depression, and other mental issues led to poor gut health, they now realize that it could also be the other way around. Irritation or mishap in the gastrointestinal system may send signals to the central nervous system (CNS), leading to feelings of anxiety and depression.
How do I know if I have an Unhealthy Gut?
The brain-gut axis is an excellent system of communication that indicates the presence of any issue in the system. They are like besties who spill the beans with each other as soon as any stress is felt. If you have any problem in the digestive process, it indicates and sends signals to the brain. The body starts experiencing the symptoms of gas, bloating, or constipation. This is when you need to take the signals and comprehend them at the right time.
If you haven’t realized yet, our gut loves to be the center of attention in the body. If you treat it well, it treats your mind and body well. Any minor issue in the gut and digestive system leads to mental, emotional, and physical disorders.
What do I do to be more ‘Body-Intelligent’?
First and foremost, trust your gut! A healthy gut is a happy gut, and a happy gut leads to a happy mind and body. Maintaining a perfect balance of harmony and sync between the brain and gut is so fascinating. When you notice certain specific symptoms and experience unexplained stress, anxiety, or feeling of lowness, it could be something related to your gut trouble. As there is a direct connection between the brain and the gut, it is extremely important to manage stress. Practice healthy lifestyle habits like exercise, physical activity, exposure to sunlight, meditation, and yoga, and inculcate them in your daily routine. After all, our routine defines our day, and days are what make our life!
Another important thing to consider is having a healthy and wholesome diet. A diet rich in all the essential vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients works great for having a healthy and happy gut, which leads to a healthy mind and body. Unhealthy food habits lead to increased stress, hormonal and other chemical imbalances in the body.
Establishing a healthy routine for a healthier lifestyle is a process that takes time. It does not happen overnight but requires a lot of dedication and the right guidance. While your body does the best job as your guide, trust Loop & Knot to be your partner in the journey towards a healthier and happier self that is conscious of one’s body and its indicators.
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