What is the importance of the gut-brain axis?

Our gut can influence our mental health. What does this mean for our modern world?

Did you know that the health of your digestive system could affect your mental health? According to research, inside the walls of our digestive system is the gut, which contains a bacteria that can shape our brain structure, as well as our moods, behavior, and overall mental health.

In this article published by The Hearty Soul we are introduced to the newly discovered connection between the gut and the brain. Using the direct pathway provided by the vagus nerve, also known as the gut-brain axis, the gut is able to communicate to the brain. The gut bacteria produces chemicals that enter the bloodstream, which then provides the signal for the blood to produce neuroactive compounds and hormones which then creates new signals for the brain. If you have experienced extreme irritation or anger when you’re hungry, or you have felt butterflies in your stomach when you’re nervous, then you have experienced the activity of the gut, now referred to as the second brain.

Based on research, an imbalance in the beneficial and harmful bacteria in the gut could lead to a dysbiosis, which is linked to a number of psychiatric and neurological disorders. Research shows that at least in the case of Mice, changing theIR diets could alter their behaviors.

Implications for AI

In our quest for understanding how nature works, we have created a science that required us to break down wholes into their component parts. The assumption was that when we are able to understand how each component works, we will also then be able to discover how the whole works.

We have separated organisms into various taxonomies, deconstructed the human DNA into base pairs, and segregated one human body part from the others, all in the hope of unlocking nature’s secret to life. This article is a reminder that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, and that we can only understand our own humanity if we look at the interconnections happening within our bodies, as well as our interconnection to the world around us [see To Sustain Life, We Must Build Communities to understand the importance of understanding these interconnections].

This message is seen in almost every branch of science today. There’s the connection between quantum physics (which governs the world of the smallest and the inanimate) and biology [see Quantum Physics Can Help Biology Answer Life’s Biggest Questions], neuroscience and quantum physics [see How The State Of Our Consciousness Can Change Our Material Reality], and chemistry and psychology [see Using Dissipative Processes In Psychotherapy], to name a few. As our modern society embarks on an innovation as advanced as AI, we must make this message of cooperation and interconnection our guide post.

Another important point in this article is that the food we eat affects the way we think, feel, and act. This means that the more we focus on eating healthy, natural food, the more effective we will be at making sound decisions for ourselves and others. Hence, it is important to return to a sustainable mode of agriculture that focuses on the vitality and nutrition offered by plants [to discover modern methods of agriculture, and to understand the context of this statement, read Robot Farmers Have Arrived: What Does It Mean For Our Societies].

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