What if the microbes in your gut profoundly influenced how your brain functions? And what if the health of your gut directly determined your brain’s health? And whether or not you’d develop dementia, Alzheimer’s disease or some other neuro-degenerative condition in your later years?
Perhaps the idea is too far fetched to be believable. So read on only if you want to be able to benefit from cutting edge scientific research by neurologist Dr. David Perlmutter, as reported by Dr. Joe Mercola on Mercola.com.
When Dr. David Perlmutter first started talking about the connection between the gut and the brain it sounded sort of like sci-fi medicine. And that’s often what revolutionary new perspectives on how the body works sound like. They gain acceptance only slowly. So you have to give Dr. Perlmutter lots of credit for remaining steadfast in his efforts to disseminate this information. It stands to help a lot of people and to also dramatically change how we look at, understand and treat both gastro-intestinal and brain illnesses.
What’s the connection?
The bacteria in your gut live on the food you eat. What you eat determines what type of bacteria predominate in your gut.
The bacteria in your gut eat the food available, digest it and excrete the remains back into your gut. These end products are absorbed through the intestines into the blood stream where they travel to the brain. The digestion end products from certain bacteria can affect brain function. This is the gut – brain connection. Conditions like depression and anxiety, among others have been strongly associated with the health or poor health of the gut. More important, restoring gut health with healthy gut bacteria has been shown to turn around such conditions. Other aspects of our health are also affected by the health of our gut and the bacteria therein.
The following is a quote from Dr. Perlmutter’s book “Brain Maker” and describes the amazing health benefits possible when the gut and gut bacteria are restored to a healthy state:
“In Brain Maker I present pretty aggressive treatments for maintaining and restoring gut health using a variety of techniques – from using probiotic enemas to even going as far as having people get fecal transplantation. And do we see success? We sure do,” Dr. Perlmutter says.
“I have a case history in Brain Maker of a young man with MS who couldn’t walk without two canes and who underwent a series of fecal transplantations in Europe, and came back and walks without any assistance whatsoever. His videotape is linked to the book and is on our site. I use the video of this man walking when I do lectures to physicians. They look at this with their jaws hanging, because again, for you and me, this was never even a consideration in medical school…
If you did pay any attention to the gut you’d become a gastroenterologist, otherwise there’d be no interest in looking at it. But it turns out that it’s relevant whether you’re a gastroenterologist, a neurologist, a psychiatrist, a joint specialist, a skin specialist, or even a cancer specialist. We’ve got to pay attention to nurturing these bacteria if we’re going to keep people healthy.”
How do you restore gut health?
See the 7 factors that are essential to gut health on the next page.