We often hear about living and working smarter – but how do we work smarter?
Have you ever felt like your mind is slow and sluggish after eating your favourite treat? This poses the question whether the fogginess in our brain is a signal coming from our brain or is it our “second brain” hidden in the lining of our digestive system.
The good news is the plethora of research emerging suggests that what we eat ultimately influences our ability to work smarter, the bad news is the Big Mac eaten for lunch was served with a side of brain fog...
What if you were told the gut and brain are in a stable relationship called the “gut-brain” axis. The connection between these two powerhouses is called the vagus nerve, the longest nerve in the body. The gut -brain partnership works together through biochemical signaling via the nervous system and the digestive tract, what this means is the bacteria in your gut has the potential to improve your brain health to accelerate learning.
Interesting fact; we are made up of billions of bacterial cells that live on us and within us, also known as the microbiome. Diet, antibiotics and the inevitable process of ageing can compromise the bacteria in our gut and if left in disorder may contribute to several chronic diseases. Maintaining gut microbiota balance is very important for our overall health.
Now that we can identify the problem of brain fog, how do we treat it?
First step to landing that promotion is to modify your high fat, sugar loaded western diet by consuming a healthy diet full of fruit, vegetables and gut friendly bacteria. If your taste is not acquired to fermented foods, a probiotic supplement contains beneficial bacteria that promotes a healthier digestive system.
Probiotics function by stimulating the immune and intestinal cells in our gut to produce short -chain fatty acids, necessary to reduce inflammation. Probiotic studies have demonstrated that if you don’t have a healthy gut microbiota, the vagus nerve will send impulses and messages stretching up your brain effecting its function and your behaviour.
The moral to this story is simple, cognitive abilities are enhanced by enhancing the gut microbiome with brain- boosting probiotics and occasionally swapping your Big Mac and coca cola for a sauerkraut kale salad and kombucha.
Upgrade your GUT to upgrade you BRAIN!
Written By Courtney Fletcher