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The Gut and our Happy Hormones:

The Gut and our Happy Hormones:

By: Seyma Turan @dietitianseyma

Did you know that more of the happy neurotransmitters are produced in the gut than in the brain?

Serotonin -
Serotonin is often referred to as ‘’happy hormone’’ , its role in regulating mood , appetite and sleep. Up to 95% of serotonin we rely on everyday is actually produced in our gut. Certain types of microbes in the gut can directly stimulate the production and release of serotonin in the cells. If you don’t have proper gut health , you are not able to produce enough serotonin to balance your mood.

Dopamine -
Dopamine plays an important role in attention ,memory and problem solving. 50% of your dopamine is produced in the gastrointestinal tract.

How can we Improve Gut-Brain Connection?
• Heal Your Gut
Since leaky gut is directly related to leaky brain, focus on first healing your gut with high nutrient foods.
•Stimulate the Vagus Nerve
The vagus nerve, a nerve that is critical to overall health and is responsible for linking the brainstem to the gut ,heart and lungs. Studies show that stimulating the vagus nerve (through things like cold showers, dancing or chanting, yoga, meditation, breath works, laughing, probiotics, sleeping on your right side, massages) can result in the restoration of homeostasis in the microbiota-gut brain connection.
• Decrease your stress
High consistent stress has been shown to help promote the destruction of the blood-brain barrier. Practice mindfulness meditation and self-love.
• Decrease the alcohol
This might sound a bit drastic but I recommend greatly decreasing your alcohol intake. Alcohol impairs not only gut and liver functions but can lead to persistent systemic inflammation in the body.
• Exercise - Your Body & Your Brain
Studies show that exercise increases BDNF (brain-derived-neurotrophic-factor) which is responsible for the growth of new brain cells. You can adjust to your lifestyle, high-intensity interval training and more relaxing, self-healing exercises such as yoga and walking.