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Feeling Depressed? How a Healthy Gut Leads to Positive Emotions

3 minutes to read

Negative thinking has a profound impact on your mood, your level of happiness in life, and your relationships. Negative thoughts can even affect your general health. Through therapies like cognitive-behavioral therapy, you can learn a number of skills and strategies to help you reduce negative thinking patterns and increase positivity in your life.

But recent research from the Leiden Institute for Brain and Cognition found an important connection between gut bacteria and cognition that can also help reduce negative thinking and improve your mood.

In the study, researchers divided 40 healthy people into two groups. The first group was given a probiotic supplement each day. The other group was given a placebo. After four weeks, the participants were tested for negative thinking and the way they react to sad moods. A significant reduction in negative thoughts was found among the probiotic group, which also had lower cognitive reactions to sadness than the control group.

The researchers point out that this study provides the first evidence that probiotics can affect negative thoughts and moods.

How Gut Microbiota Affect Mood and Behavior

In a 2017 UCLA study, researchers wanted to characterize brain and behavioral characteristics based on someone’s gut microbiota profile. The gut microbiota is the community of microorganisms that reside in the gut, including healthy bacteria and those that are potentially harmful.

Forty healthy women were enlisted for the study and divided into two groups. The first group was comprised of 33 women who had higher levels of a bacterium known as Bacteroides, while the remaining seven had more of the gut bacteria called Prevotella. The researchers used brain imaging techniques to obtain gray matter metrics and white matter fiber density. Then they conducted fMRI brain scans to assess the differences in the group’s responses to observing emotional images.

The Prevotella group showed more white matter connectivity in the brain regions responsible for emotion, attention and sensory processing. This group reacted to the photographs with higher levels of negative feelings like anxiety, distress, and irritability than the Bacteroides group displayed.

Although more research is needed to determine the extent to which gut microbe directly influences the brain and vice-versa, the UCLA study identifies an iron-clad association of brain-gut microbiota interactions in healthy humans. Researchers believe they’re on the path to discovering a better understanding of the brain-gut connection, which will lead to new, novel approaches to treating and preventing psychological disorders like anxiety and depression.

Stonehenge Health Dynamic Biotics To Help Improve Your Mood

Taking a daily probiotic has been shown to help reduce negative thinking and improve symptoms of depression, and it has a variety of other important benefits, including improving gut symptoms like diarrhea, constipation, bloating, pain, and gas. Probiotics have also been shown to increase your natural energy and promote overall good skin, urinary, and vaginal health.

Stonehenge Health’s Dynamic Biotics provides digestion and immune support. Featuring 16 unique probiotic strains and 51 billion live probiotic cultures per serving, Dynamic Probiotics can improve your gut-brain connection for better overall health and wellbeing.



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