The Online Spring Gluten-Free Expo (Nourished Festival) just finished up yesterday! Wow! Amazing event! There were so many great presentations, giveaways and discounts.
One of the presentations, Improve Your Gut to Improve Your Brain was given by Sheri Traxler. Sheri is an author, speaker, and coach. Sheri is the author of Go Forward: 28 Days to Eat, Move, and Enjoy Life God’s Way. Sheri holds her Master’s in Health Promotion, is a Certified Personal Trainer, Health Coach, Nutrition Specialist, and Intuitive Eating Counselor.
Sheri spoke about the Gut-Brain Connection. The Gut-Brain Connection includes:
- Enteric Nervous System and the two blood brain barriers (Blood Brain Barrier and Gut Blood Brain Barrier).
- BDNF (brain-derived neuropathic factor) and Mitrochondria. Brain-derived neuropathic factor is a protein produced in the nerve cells. This helps keep the cells functioning and growing.
- Neurotransmitters and Hormones. Neurotransmitters include serotonin – the ‘feel good’ hormone, 90% of serotonin is made in the gut, dopamine helps us stay motivated, 50% of dopamine is made in the gut, GABA helps with stress management, sleep, and a calm mind, and cortisol – stress hormone.
When we have a healthy gut, it means improved energy, brain, and confidence.
What Does a Healthy Gut-Brain Life Look Like?
Take a look at your lifestyle. What does it incude?
- Stop doing damage meaning stop doing things that hurt your microbiome. This includes eliminating toxins like chemicals, pesticides, herbicides, and artificial stuff like flavorings and colorings. Antibiotics is also included.
- Make contact with the billions of good bugs. This includes hugs, physical contact with friends, and going outside barefoot on the grass – grounding.
- Manage stress. Why? We want to manage stress because unmanaged chronic stress can have a direct impact on inflammation, on gut permeability, and shifting your gut microbiome. How to manage stress? Doing mindful eating, prioritizing sleep – by 10 pm, and meditating.
- Move often. Moving often will increase BDNF and increase mitochondria. And movement helps your gut.
- Feed Your Gut.
7 Ways to Feed Your Gut to Feel Great
- Create a powerful plate + prebiotics. Include vegerables on half your plate. Some great prebiotics include almonds, apples, asparagus, bananas, broccoli, brussel sprouts, dandelion greens, garlic, leeks, onions, and pears. Broccoli and brussel sprouts contain sulphur which combat bad bacteria.
- Eat probiotics daily. Probiotic-rich foods include raw apple cider vinegar, kefir, kimchi, kombucha, fermented pickles, sauerkraut, and yogurt.
- Focus on whole foods and not highly processed foods. Bad bacteria feed on highly processed foods and foods that contain refined sugars and artificial sweeteners/artificial colors/flavoring.
- Oils and Fats – Lower saturated fats especially animal products. Animal products lower diversity and abundance of good bacteria and good gut flora. Include Extra Virgin Olive Oil, omega-3 fatty acids (DHA, flax seeds, walnuts, sardines, and salmon.) Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for brain health.
- Spices. Spices to include: coriander and cumin – these spices decrease inflammation especially gut inflammation, fennel – helps with better digestion of food, turmeric – decreases gut inflammation and can help grown new brain cells.
- Indulge. Coffee, tea, and dark chocolate. If you enjoy dark chocolate bars, opt for bars with 80% cacao. Another chocolate option is raw cacao powder or raw cacao nibs. Dark chocolate increases blood flow to the brain.
- Filtered Water. Stay hydrated for both gut and brain health. Opt to put a filter on your shower and kitchen faucet. Chlorine kills bacteria.
Add supplements with the guidance of your health care practitioner.
Hope you find this info helpful.
To your health,
#guthealth #brainhealth #fermentedfoods #wholefoods #plantbased #spices #healthyfats #healthcoaching #NourishedFestival