Can those microscopic bacteria and microbes in the Gut change our management of the stress in our life?
The 21st Century provides a constant barrage of stressors and sometimes these stressors overwhelm us, leading to poor physical and mental health. Our sleep quality, digestive health, ability to adapt to stress, pain management, and even happiness have, in recent scientific studies, been linked, to the collection and diversity of the bacteria in our Gut. The concept of psychobiotics was first coined by scientists in 2013 and since then a huge wealth of research has been done to demonstrate the amazing effect this microscopic life has on our mental health via the Gut brain axis. As early as 1910, Dr George Porter Phillips demonstrated an anti-depressive effect on melancholic patients’ by feeding them with a live bacteria gelatin-whey formula, similar to a live yoghurt of today!
For years we have used the terms ‘a gut feeling’, ‘gut wrenching’, ‘butterflies in the tummy’ , gut instinct etc. when referring to emotional feelings conveyed from the brain to the Gut and visa-versa. Scientist are now slowly unravelling these links and have shown how the vagus nerve, which provides a bi-directional messaging system from the Gut to the brain, is influenced by the microbes we house is our Gut!
The total weight of these microbes is 1-2Kg and this interestingly is the same as the weight of the brain! Our relationship with these delightful creatures begins in the womb and evolves throughout our life to influence all health outcomes. Birth mode, breast feeding, food types, early life stress, antibiotic exposure and environmental influences all play a part in the development of our immune system and our stress response.
So what can we do to support this team of health ambassadors?
The single most important item is diet! We have had a symbiotic relationship with health promoting bacteria for centuries and if we feed them the way Nature designed, the healthful microbes thrive. If we feed them; nutrient poor adulterated food, high in messed up fats and sugars, the wrong bacteria dominate and the beneficial ones diminish.
There is now strong scientific evidence to show that targeted manipulation of the microbes in the Gut at vulnerable developmental phases of humans can reduce the negative health effects of stress. It is increasingly clear that bacteria are essential for normal brain development! Foods containing prebiotics (food for beneficial bacteria), probiotics (bacteria that confer a health benefit to the host), certain fats and nutrient rich foods, all support the healthy development and proliferation of the bacteria we need to support a healthy stress response.
The hippocampus, the amygdala and the pre-frontal cortex are all regions of the brain that have been studied in relation to the stress response. A study in 2016, on mice that had been exposed to a high anti-biotic regime, it was shown the hippocampus area was reduced however it was restored by the administration of a probiotic cocktail. There are many other such studies! Research to date shows the microbes of the Gut communicate through the intricate network of nerves imbedded in the Gut lining and the vagus nerve operates as a bi-directional sensory channel via Gut microbes and the brain.
This is a rapidly expanding area of research and here we should note that there are many supplemental probiotics on the market, however it is the bacterial specie, strain, dose and preparation method that influence the efficacy of these products!
There is great potential for us to reduce and change our stress reactivity and it must be emphasised again that diet is the single most important factor that influences the microbes that live in our Gut and these play a large part in our health and how we are able to manage 21st century stress.
Join us for our next set of 1 day workshops, to learn about and plan to eat to build resilience against stress and to use stress reducing methods and techniques. For the sake of your health!
Foster J. et al (2016) Stress & the Gut Brain Axis: Regulation of the microbiome
Anderson S. & Cryan J. (2017) The Psychobiotic Revolustion
This De-Stress Workshops gives you fast, effective techniques to reduce stress, increase your energy levels and sleep better
* Proven relaxation techniques
* The importance of stabilising blood sugar to reduce stress – and how to do it
* NLP techniques for emotional control – improving your mind-set and confidence
* The nutrients required to support a healthy stress response – and where they’re found
* Why the ‘Gut’ is the second brain, the link between gut health and stress
* Meal planning and recipes to balance blood sugar and support your stress response
Included in the price of the day will be a healthy lunch and refreshments during the day
Please add any special dietary requirements in your application to join the course
Priced at just £45 per person for the full day or £35 early bird bookings up to the 30th August – includes lunch and refreshments.
Your trainers for the day are:
Nicki Williamson MCAHyp DABCH. A qualified Hypnotherapist, Coach & NLP practitioner. Nicki is an experienced and successful practitioner who has changed the lives of many people, by teaching them effective tools to manage conditions such as stress, anxiety & depression.
Jane Rose-Land, BSc Nutritional Medicine, BANT, CNHC. A qualified Nutritionist with a degree in Nutritional Medicine, Jane has a vast experience helping people to a better quality of life through diet changes that reduce stress, improve digestive and bowel health, improve blood sugar management and increase energy levels.
For further information call Nicki or Jane today on 07568 145151 or 01366 347452 or complete the form below to sign up. Or, contact me for further information.