Digestion and Mental Health

dreamstime_m_53003952We obtain nutrients our body needs to survive through our digestive system. Vitamins, minerals, amino acids, fatty acids and many other nutrients are primarily provided by the foods we eat and the fluids we drink. However, when the diet is lacking or if our digestive system is not working properly, nutrient deficiencies and a range of inflammatory immune responses  will occur,

This can lead to a whole spectrum of health problems, including mental disturbances such as depression, anxieties and even schizophrenia.
Research shows that people with digestive-based conditions and diseases (e.g. celiac disease, Crohn’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome) are significantly more likely to suffer from mental health problems.

Unfortunately, the gut brain connections and digestive disturbances are regularly overlooked in mental health assessments. ADD, ADHD, Anxiety, Autism, Depression, Bipolar disorder, even rheumatoid arthritis are now studied in connection to the gut flora.

Some of the most common causes of digestive problems that require treatment if present with mental health problems and digestive complaints are:

Food Allergies – Medications – Parasites and Pathogens – Digestive Enzyme Deficiencies – Stomach Acid Problems – Bacterial Imbalances and Intestinal Permeability (Leaky Gut).

We have more nerve cells in our bowels than we have in our spine and our brain and this must be given consideration when treating any of the above mentioned conditions.