Nutrition, Gut and Brain Health, How it Impacts You!

Fueling your brain is an ongoing process. This is provided by the food you consume. ToNutrition, gut and brain health, Chrisanna Harrington, man holding basket of fruits and vegetables put it another way, the structure and function of your brain, as well as, eventually, your mood, are all directly impacted by the foods you consume.

When you consume nutritious food that is beneficial for you, your brain performs at its peak potential. The brain is nourished by consuming high-quality meals that are rich in nutrients, such as vitamins and minerals.

Conversely, consuming unhealthy meals may have an adverse impact on not just your body but also your brain.

Neurotransmitters move from your gut to your brain

Neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, dopamine, GABA, glutamate, and dopamine, are just four of many neurotransmitters that transmit messages from your body to your brain. Recent evidence in scientific literature shows us that some of these neurotransmitters are made in our gut and then transferred through the gut to the brain. Interesting, so there really is something to this “gut instinct”. Have you ever heard of the phrase “Follow your gut?” That means to follow your instincts that your brain is telling you through your gut. So, this is a biological edge to keep us sharp, and eating whole, nonprocessed foods will keep your gut healthy to produce such neurotransmitters as serotonin, GABA, glutamate, and dopamine. 

And how does our gut produce these neurotransmitters? If you eat whole foods, the whole foods provide nutrients for beneficial bacteria in our gut, and then they produce these neurotransmitters as well as break down the food into short-chain fatty acids that help form the neurotransmitters! What a beautiful organism the body is, if we take care of it, but if you feed it junk or processed foods, you cannot produce the neurotransmitters in the abundance that your body needs. What happens? Depression and anxiety if you are lacking serotonin, and in binge eaters, craving for sugar if you are lacking dopamine.

Nutritional deficiencies can affect our moods

Is eating whole food the only part of producing a healthy body? Certainly not. Healthy habits, such as exercise, to release endorphins, healthy relationships and attachments, and a sense of purpose and direction. All of this adds to our sense of well-being. 

However, certainly, there are nutrient deficiencies that do cause mood problems: 

  • Iron Deficiency- decreased energy and tiredness.
  • B12 deficiency- decreased mental clarity, decreased energy, and tiredness
  • High blood sugar- decreased mental clarity, decreased energy, and tiredness, especially after meals, inflammation, painful movement, and depression. 

Every area of our life is impacted in some way by the state of our physical bodies. Not only does what we eat, how much sleep we get, and how much exercise we do influence how our bodies feel, but it also has a big effect on how our minds and emotions function.

Reach out to start taking charge of your emotional and physical health!

Nutegra is a nutrition consulting and counseling company started in 2002 by Chrisanna Harrington-Wright, MA, RDN, LMHC. The Nutegra program is offered via Telehealth or in person if you live near Fort Myers, Florida. The program provides support for healthy gut function, the brain, healthy weight, and your emotional health. To learn more about how we can help you meet your health goals and weight goals, give us a call or fill out the contact form and click send. We look forward to helping you be a healthier version of yourself!