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Your gut bacteria are actively involved in your emotions, how you think, and even behave

Posted on: 03-29-2019 22:51:16

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'There is no limit really on what aspects of emotion could be modulated by the microbiome'

Bacteria in your gut could be influencing your mood and how you think (Sarah Claydon/CBC/Dr. Horst Neve/Max Rubner-Institut)

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We're familiar with the idea that the state of our bellies can affect our brain, but you might be surprised to find out that this goes way beyond the idea of getting "hangry."

Our gut—or more specifically, all those little bacteria that live in it — can profoundly affect the way our brains work in many ways. Scientific research that's been picking up a lot of traction in recent years is starting to hint that our gut bacteria, otherwise known as our microbiome, is an active participant in our emotions, how we think, and even how we behave.

Recent human studies have demonstrated a strong link between the gut and the brain. One study of individuals in Belgium and the Netherlands showed that in depressed people, two groups of gut bacteria were consistently less common. Another study found that a group of people who'd consumed probiotic-rich yogurt had a decrease of activity in an area of their brain that resulted in them being more calm, cool, and collected.