New research is showing us that the health of our brain is controlled by the state of our microbiome (the bacteria in our bellies). These intestinal organisms participate in a wide variety of physiologic actions including immune system functioning, detoxification, neurotransmitter and vitamin production, nutrient absorption, and the signaling being hungry or full. A disruption in our microbiome causes inflammation, which is a key ingredient for chronic disease. All of these processes factor mightily into whether or not we experience autoimmune diseases, allergies, asthma, ADHD, cancer, diabetes, or dementia, and other chronic diseases. Moreover, the microbiome affects our mood, libido, metabolism, immunity, and mental function leading to memory problems, poor concentration, insomnia, struggles with weight and many more.
The good news is that anyone can change the state of their microbiome and thus prevent, improve, or eliminate the host of disease processes associated with altered gut microbiome through lifestyle changes. No pharmaceutical approach can come anywhere close to a dietary prescription for managing intestinal bacteria. Author of Brain Maker and leading neurologist, Dr. David Perlmutter suggests eating probiotic and prebiotic foods to restore a healthy gut flora. Examples of probiotic foods include active-culture yogurt, kefir, tempeh, kimchi, and sauerkraut. Examples of prebiotic foods are raw chicory root, raw dandelion greens, raw garlic, raw or cooked onion, and raw asparagus. Additionally, avoiding processed foods and gluten, eating healthy fats, establishing regular sleep patterns, and increasing physical activity rebuild and restore our microbiome. Following these few easy strategies opens the door to unlimited brain health potential and restores health. Imagine how much better you can feel and function!
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”