Certain gut bacteria may be able to influence our mental state

The psychobiotics are special living beings. the Professor Ted Dinana clinical psychiatrist from the Food Pharmacology Center at University College Cork, has coined this term in 2013. It was when he discovered that certain bacteria that live in the gut-brain axis are able to produce neuroactive substances. The presence of these molecules more or less large quantity in our nervous system would then condition our mental state.

3D image of the gut microbiome

Under certain conditions, these neuroactive substances would be harmful for our mental health. They can generate depressionof anxietyor even dementia in some subjects. They also act on the intestine, because the central nervous system is connected to the digestive tract in a bidirectional way.

In addition, psychobiotics actively interact with gut microbiomes to regulate digestion and optimize other metabolic functions.

Psychobiotics: good or bad bacteria?

Psychobiotics have long been known to be good bacteria. These intestinal bacteria act on the hypothalamic-pituitary axis and are beneficial for our overall health, by regulating the intestinal flora. They mainly contribute to proper functioning of the digestive systemstimulate the immune system and slow down the proliferation of pathogens.

However, the Professor Glenn Gibsonwho works in food microbiology at the University of Reading, UK, warned that the presence of these microorganisms is not without risks for our health. They would be the cause of many mental illnesses.

A balanced diet can help treat mental illnesses

The link between digestive disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and Mental Health has been demonstrated by several studies. A Healthy eating stimulates our intestinal microbiota. For example, following a plant-based diet and high in fermented foods may decrease the risk of depression.

Of the neurotransmitters related to mood are made in the intestine from fatty acids. Doctors could then recommend a specific diet depending on the mental illness in addition to antidepressant treatments.

SOURCE: LIVESCIENCE

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