The Love Triangle: Your Gut, Your Brain and Your Microbes

Did you know that the bacteria in your gut actually run the emotional part of your brain? It seems a bit far-fetched, but it's true! The emotions we have on a moment by moment basis are not just "out there somewhere" feelings that ebb and flow throughout the day. Instead, they are largely influenced by trillions of microbes that live deep inside your gut.

Let's face it – our emotional state will ebb and flow throughout the day, depending on our circumstances. You might have had a disagreement with your spouse or child that left you feeling sad or even angry, both of which would be completely understandable. But what about the time when you woke up in the morning and just feel 'off' for some reason? It’s like your brain got hijacked by the blue funk during the night and your day isn’t starting off as awesome as you’d hoped. It seems that there’s a possible explanation for this phenomenon that has to do with those amazing gut microbes!

For many years, scientists have known that the chemicals responsible for your mood, called neurotransmitters, are primarily produced by the bacteria in your gut. There are many different types of neurotransmitters, including serotonin, dopamine, and GABA. When in balance, they maintain healthy mood and emotional responses. However, because the gut manufactures over 75% of neurotransmitters, it only stands to reason that alterations within your gut bacteria could affect your mood. This dynamic relationship is commonly referred to as the gut-brain axis.

One of the easiest ways to improve this fast-moving communication highway is to consume plenty of fermented foods which are naturally rich in beneficial probiotics. Even if this doesn’t sound appealing (although we highly recommend it), a high-quality probiotic can make a dramatic difference in the way you feel. According to experts, consuming supplemental probiotics had a dramatic impact on individuals dealing with depression, anxiety, and negative thinking. In one analysis of over 26,000 people, those who had the highest intake of probiotic-rich foods observed dramatic improvement of depression. Pretty amazing, right?

So, if you're dealing with low mood or emotional fluctuations that are getting in the way of your awesome life, consider adding some probiotic-rich foods such as kefir or sauerkraut to your diet, or maybe even a high-quality probiotic.  And then sit back and let your gut-brain axis kick into gear. Your brain, your microbes, and your mood will thank you for it!






Patient Testimonials

Dr Don Sharnowski is a doctor who is above and beyond all other doctors! Probably his most outstanding quality is that he LISTENS to what his patients say. He is willing to explain things to his patients in terms they can understand. Dr Don treats his patients with wisdom, understanding, gentleness, care, encouragement and he is willing to "go the extra mile" to give his patients the proper treatment they need. He does not treat patients like they were on an assembly line or like he is rushing them out the door. Dr Don has fixed many of the problems I had at my first visit, one of which I had endured for 3 years. Dr Don was able to fix that problem in 2 weeks when others had not. Dr Don has also helped me loose 40 lbs so far. My total recovery is still an ongoing process, but should be a cinch with Dr Don's expert help! Thank you, Dr Don! You are an awesome answer to prayers!

Karen G.

Super Awesome Doctor in Overland Park, Kansas!! He really knows his stuff love his Holistic approach. Wish I lived closer so I could see him on the regular, at least we can chat on the regular! Very informative in all aspects of health! Five years ago this man took our health and turned it around 360 degrees. My son got ear infections very often. Both my boys have respiratory issues. My husband asthma and overweight. Myself aches and pains, specifically on my left side and joints. Well needless to say no more ear infections respiratory not nearly as often my husband is 80lbs less and never uses his inhaler . My sons ear infections...What ear infections...They are no longer! Thanks Dr. Don for all you do and have done!!

Lots of Love from The Stevens

Dr Don Sharnowski is truly an amazing Doctor. He listens to his patients and treats in a very complete way. He is very knowledgeable because he never stops learning. He is a great communicator and will help you learn better ways to be healthy if you will actually do what he teaches.

Cassie N.

Don (Dr Sharnowski) is truly one of a kind. He is warm, inviting and incredibly generous with his time, but also really knowledgeable about the body and everything within. You won't find crystal balls here. You'll find a super nice guy in sneakers who also sells farm fresh eggs at the counter. I went in expecting to get adjusted (and was scared, because I'd never seen a chiro before). Instead, what I experienced was someone who actually sat down and listened to my history, connected the dots between several ailments (instead of jumping to prescribe one drug apiece to treat each one), and explained things that no one had ever taken the time to do. I was there about my back specifically, but we talked about my whole health. Instead of just prescribing an anti inflammatory (which is what my other doc did), he explained why we get inflammation in our bodies, and how to help reduce it with what we eat. I've also been on thyroid medication for over 10 years, and he actually explained what the thyroid is, and what the drug I take is, and what it does. But not in a defensive or overly crunchy way. He just openly explained in a way that I could understand it. I highly recommend Don to anyone with a body who wants to feel better. His approach is approachably holistic. Just common sense, whole body-centered treatment.

Megh K.

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