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July 4, 2015Gut Microbiome and MoodAdrenal Insufficiency, Anti-inflammatory Action of Probiotics, Anxiety, Bacteroides fragilis, Bifidobacterium infantis, Bifidobacterium longum, C. Scientists are discovering that some probiotic micro-organisms living in our guts are also psychoactive.
I’d say that the field of psychobiotics in the not so distant future will be understood more broadly to include all of us, not just those with diagnosable mental illnesses.
It runs from the brain stem down each side of the neck, across the chest, down through the abdomen allowing the brain, lungs, heart, spleen, liver, pancreas, kidneys, stomach and intestines to communicate bi-directionally along its network. Did you notice the mention of the anti-inflammatory actions of probiotics in the quote above?
These signaling irregularities affect our emotions, mental abilities, behaviors, and perception of and reactions to pain (nociception). Our gut microbiome, the 100 trillion micro-organisms (500-1,000 species of bacteria, fungi, viruses, and other tiny life forms) living in our intestinal linings, is so important to the proper functioning of the entire body that many scientists now regard it as an organ in and of itself. In 2013, microbiology researchers Mazmanian and Hsiao published research results that linked a specific variety of probiotic bacteria with anxious behaviors in mice. A recent study found that a combination of the probiotics Lactobacillus helveticus and Bifidobacterium longum (probiotic bacteria found in healthy human gut microbiomes) reduced anxiety, depression, and stress levels and improved coping strategies.
Our psychological and physiological reactions to fear and stress play a large role in depression. What often happens now is that we live in a state of chronic cortisol overproduction, over stimulated, afraid, unable to calm down, wearing out our adrenals. GABA (gamma-Aminobutyric acid) is our central nervous system’s chief inhibitory neurotransmitter, playing a central role in reducing neuronal excitability throughout the body and regulating muscle tone. Many physiological and psychological processes associated with depression, including negative ruminations, can be traced to a deficiency in the neurotransmitter GABA.
Bifodobacterium longum is found in unprocessed yogurts, various types of fermented dairy foods (kefir’s a good choice), and fermented vegetables such as sauerkraut. A team of biologists at MIT found that another probiotic strain, Lactobacillus reuteri, improved mood, restored a youthful appearance to the skin, and promoted general health by increasing levels of oxytocin, the love hormone. Lactobacillus rhamnosus is a bacterial strain that has been shown to reduce anxiety and depression in anxious mice. GABA, the central nervous system’s principal inhibitory neurotransmitter, regulates many physiological and psychological processes in the body. When the vagus nerve was severed, GABA receptor levels and the animals’ behavior remained unchanged after treatment with L. The researchers allow that the vagus nerve is the obvious communication route but perhaps not the only one, that messaging may also occur via other nerves or chemicals in the blood. If you doubt there’s a direct connection between the health of the gut microbiome and mental health, keep in mind that functional bowel disorders and mood disorders such as anxiety and depression are generally comorbid (they generally occur together). Lactobacillus acidophilus improves the functioning of canabinoid receptors in the spinal cord that are important for regulating pain perception.
A number of microbes can produce other neurotransmitters, such as norepinephrine, serotonin, and dopamine. Bifidobacterium infantis has been clinically demonstrated to be very good at reducing the symptoms caused by chronic immune activation in the gut, autoimmune diseases, and excessive cortisol release. Years ago, when I was living in Cambridge, MA, my neighborhood grocery store was Savenor’s.
This is also true of genetic predispositions for heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, cancer,  and pretty much every other illness. Research has shown that probiotic bacteria produce positive changes in the mucosal lining of the small intestines which affect gene activity and cellular reactions.
DISCLAIMER:  Nothing on this site or blog is intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Type 2 diabetes is now also largely viewed as the result of a different type of  autoimmune reaction: one in which B and T immune cells cause inflammation in the fatty tissue surrounding organs in the body. In Type 1 diabetes, which used to be called juvenile diabetes, the immune system mistakenly kills off pancreatic cells that make the blood-sugar-regulating hormone insulin.
In Type 2 diabetes, the pancreas usually produces enough insulin but the cells in the body have become unable to make effective use of the hormone, a condition called insulin resistance. Type 2 diabetes is associated with obesity, older age, family history of gestational diabetes, and physical inactivity.
A prediabetic condition indicates the amount of glucose in the blood is above normal but not yet high enough to be called diabetes.
DEATHS:  Based on the 69,071 death certificates in which diabetes was listed as the underlying cause of death in 2010, diabetes was the 7th leading cause of death in the United States that year. About 208,000 Americans under age 20 are estimated to have diagnosed diabetes, approximately 0.25% of that population.
In 2008—2009, the annual incidence of diagnosed diabetes in youth was estimated at 18,436 with Type 1 diabetes, 5,089 with Type 2 diabetes. Researchers are discovering changes in normal gut bacteria that take place before either Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes turns into a clinical condition. A team of scientists led by Dr Ben Boursi, a Post Doctoral Researcher in Gastroenterology at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, found people who have taken multiple courses of antibiotics were 37% more likely to develop Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. Several studies in humans have shown that early childhood exposure to antibiotics is associated with increased risk of obesity in later life – and obesity has long been recognized as risk for developing diabetes.
The Boursi team’s future research will focus on identifying the species of gut bacteria necessary to prevent and reverse diabetes, potentially working towards the possibility of transplanting prebiotic and probiotic microbes into the gut as a therapeutic strategy for diabetes. A research team led by Dr Elena Barengolts, an Endocrinologist at the University of Illinois College of Medicine, found irregularities in the composition of the probiotic bacteria in the guts of prediabetic patients: Compared with subjects whose glucose tolerance was good, the prediabetics had fewer and less diverse populations of bacteria living in their gut microbiomes.
The study found that men whose blood sugar control  remained normal over the year (Group 1) had higher numbers of beneficial gut bacteria while the men who continued to be prediabetic had fewer beneficial bacteria and higher numbers of harmful bacteria in their guts. Furthermore, the group whose blood sugar management improved over the course of the year (Group 4) had a higher number of a strain of healthy bacteria (Akkermansia) than the group who had maintained normal blood sugar control over the year (Group 1). At the phylum level, this study found significant differences in the bacterial composition between Groups 1 and 2: Group 2 (people with impaired but stable fasting glucose or glucose tolerance) had higher levels of Bacteroidetes and lower levels of Firmicutes than people in Group 1. The number of Proteobacteria decreased over the 12-month study period in Groups 2 and 4 compared with Group 1.
Barengolts notes, “Changes in the gut microbiota occur in the early stage of diabetes development.
Other studies are currently underway in Italy and China investigating gut bacterial transplants as a treatment for diabetes. A small study followed 33 babies from Finland and Estonia who were at increased genetic risk for developing Type 1 diabetes. By age three, four of the children developed Type 1 diabetes.  Huge alterations in the gut microbes of those those four children were seen about a year before onset of the disease.
Researcher Dr Aleksandar Kostic, a Postdoctoral Fellow in Computational Biology and Experimental Biology at MIT and Harvard, hopes the study’s results will lead to an early diagnostic test for Type 1 diabetes. Given what we already know about the gut microbiome’s role in keeping the body in a balanced state so it remains healthy, it makes sense to focus on diet and nutritional supplements for preventing and treating diabetes. For example, we know there is considerable variation among people in the microbes that live in and on us. The following is from an easy to read summary of changes in the various human microbiomes from birth through old age.


Chronic diseases, especially autoimmune ones, are only 25% determined by genetic inheritance. If we know that both the composition and abundance of micro-organisms living in our guts  change over the course of a lifetime, shouldn’t it be possible to learn how to make deliberate changes to our gut microbiome – changes that prevent diabetes from developing even if we have a genetic predisposition for it? Almost all so-called foods that come in a bottle, can, jar, bag, or box have had sugars added to them, usually in the form of high fructose corn syrup.
Grains turn into sugar in your body, sharply raising your glucose and insulin levels, and contribute to insulin resistance. Consuming a lot of refined grains (and even whole grains) is also highly inflammatory for another reason:  Humans are designed to eat a diet containing a ratio of 1 or 2 parts of Omega-6 essential fatty acids to every 1 part of Omega-3. Better alternatives to grains are non-GMO almond meal, coconut flour, buckwheat groats, and sweet potatoes. Eat fewer saturated and trans fats (unhealthy) and more mono and poly unsaturated fats (healthy).  Examples of healthy fats include avocado, butter made from raw grass-fed organic milk, cheese, raw dairy, organic pastured eggs, raw nuts, grass-fed meats, and coconut oil. Due to the high percentage of nutrient-poor foods, refined carbohydrates, bad fats, and refined sugars in the Standard American Diet (SAD), along with consumption of multiple OTC and prescription pharmaceuticals, we are far from getting the optimal ratio of 1:1 for Omega-6s (inflammatory) and Omega-3s (anti-inflammatory).
Vitamin D3 is vitally important for healthy immune functioning – and most of us are seriously D3 deficient.
Exposure of the skin to sunshine (without sunscreen), salmon, tuna, mackerel, sardines, cod liver oil, egg yolks, cheeses, butter, shiitake and button mushrooms, sunflower seeds and sprouts, and high quality supplements.
See The Real RDA for Vitamin D Is 10 Times Higher Than Currently Recommended for information on how how the RDA for Vitamin D should be correctly calculated and how to get an adequate amount of it. See Alzheimer’s and Vitamin D Deficiency and Whole Food Supplements (Bio-available) vs OTC (Synthetic) Vitamins for additional information on Vitamin D3.
The increase in new cases may be due in part to a greater awareness of the disorder and more people being tested for it. Again, this is a very good review and my comments aren’t meant to be suggestions to change anything.
The short answer is that NON-GMO plant foods are ones that have not been genetically modified and NON-GMO animals are ones that have not been fed genetically engineered grains or other plants. GMO foods have been genetically engineered, for reasons completely unrelated to health or nourishment, to withstand heavy applications of potent herbicides like Monsanto’s Roundup (a glyphosate-based weed killer). Glyphosate  causes serious damage to the beneficial microbes living in our guts (our gut microbiome) and is regarded by many scientists as the most important factor in the development of the many chronic diseases and conditions plaguing Westernized societies. England, France, Germany, New Zealand, Switzerland, China, Indonesia, and more than 25 other countries around the world require GE foods to be labeled so consumers can choose to avoid them. Monsanto and the other big biotech companies have joined together to spend huge sums of money to make sure these GMO foods remain unlabeled in the US. The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) has declared genetically engineered food unsafe for consumption. Studies of people in the US and Germany have found high levels of glyphosate in human urine, blood, and breast milk as well as in drinking water supplies. That is, they deliver neuroactive substances such as gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and serotonin that influence the brain via the gut-brain axis.
And they all begin with the health of the several pounds of miniscule critters living in our gut microbiomes.
The theory is that these micro-organisms  communicate with the nervous system using some of the same neurochemicals the body uses to relay messages in the brain.
The mice were known to have alterations in their gut microbiota and GI barrier defects  (increased gut permeability, AKA leaky gut) and also exhibited anxious, obsessive behaviors (such as obsessively burying marbles). People suffering from major depression also have elevated levels of cortisol, the stress hormone our adrenals release to get us ready to fight for our lives or flee from the danger.
Chronically elevated cortisol production interferes with learning and memory, lowers immune functioning, decreases bone density, increases weight gain,  raises blood pressure and cholesterol levels, leads to heart disease, increases risk for depression and anxiety, decreases resilience – and is generally exhausting. Alterations in GABA receptor expression are linked to the the development of anxiety and depression. For example, Bifidobacterium infantis, taken as an probotic, alters serotonin levels – just like Prozac but without the undesirable side effects. So it, along with some other probiotic bacteria, is a good choice for people with leaky gut, IBS, IBD, celiac disease, and Crohn’s disease. Mrs Savenor kept a huge, wooden pickle barrel next to the checkout counter.  The top of the barrel was open. The Childs lived in the neighborhood of beautiful big houses on the north side of Kirkland Street. Any of these forms may be effective for digestive problems as long as they contain the right kind of beneficial organisms in adequate numbers.
Inflammation is associated with immune system imbalance and disruption of hormone activity. More than 90 percent of the body’s serotonin, a feel good neurotransmitter, lies within the gut. The other 75% is environmental (both internal and external) and therefore largely up to you. In order to post comments, please make sure JavaScript and Cookies are enabled, and reload the page. Insulin (a hormone produced by the pancreas) must also be present in the blood for glucose to be able to make it into our cells to nourish them. The inflammation occurs when rapidly growing fat cells outstrip their blood supply and begin to die off. The body’s immune system attacks and destroys these pancreatic cells so they no longer make enough insulin. Prediabetic people are at greater risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. In 2010, diabetes was also mentioned as a cause of death in a total of 234,051 certificates.
Studies have found that only about 35% to 40% of people with diabetes who died had diabetes listed anywhere on the death certificate and only about 10-15% had it listed as the underlying cause of death. Since we now know that 70-80% of our immune system is located in our GI tract, where digestion takes place, you can see how a serious imbalance in the bacterial make up of the gut microbiome could lead to the development of diabetes in people with a genetic predisposition for it.
The team also found the greater the number of courses of antibiotics, the higher the risk for developing diabetes. Proteobacteria are a major phylum of gram-negative bacteria that include a variety of pathogens – such as Escherichia, Salmonella, Vibrio, Helicobacter, and Yersinia. Group 2 also had fewer   Enterobacteriaceae (a large family of  bacteria that includes the pathogens Salmonella, Escherichia coli, Yersinia pestis, Klebsiella and Shigella) and  more Ruminococcae and Veillonellaceae. Analysis of their stool samples charted changes in the multitude of microorganisms living in their guts.
As with the men in the veterans’ study, there was a marked drop in the diversity of the overall microbial community.
Just like our fingerprints vary, we vary in the microbial species we have as well as their relative abundancies. Many grains also contain gluten, which triggers inflammation in the intestines, leading to a state of chronic inflammation in the body and autoimmune diseases.
This ratio is what we get when we eat real, unprocessed, highly nutritious foods – non-GMO veggies, fruits, nuts, seeds, and pastured animals. Unless we work mostly naked outdoors in a sunny climate without slathering our skin with sunscreen, we can benefit greatly from adding a high quality D3 supplement to our daily diets.


8-10 hours of sitting a day, even if you exercise 30-60 minutes daily and are very fit, promotes dozens of chronic diseases – including obesity and Type 2 diabetes. When you stop moving and sit still for extended periods of time, it’s like telling your body to shut down and prepare for death. These cellular mechanisms are also responsible for pushing fuels into your cells and, if done regularly, will radically decrease your risk of diabetes and obesity. Dr Fraser is an experienced board certified endocrinologist and Co-Chair of the Institutional Review Board at Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, LA. This ratio is what we get when we eat real, unprocessed, highly nutritious foods – non-GMO veggies, fruits, nuts, seeds, and pastured animals.
GMOs are created using the gene-splicing techniques of biotechnology to inject DNA from one species into another species, creating combinations of plant, animal, bacteria, and viral genes that don’t occur in nature or through crossbreeding methods. England, Japan, Brazil, Norway, India, Thailand and some other countries have even completely banned some GE food crops.
Unbalance in the composition of microbes there creates inflammation inside the intestinal linings, increasing gut permeability, leading to chronic inflammation elsewhere in the body – and disease. If something interferes with signaling somewhere in the system, a circuit can malfunction and perhaps cause the entire switchboard to break down.
When they were given oral doses of  one of two strains of the bacterium Bacteroides fragilis (probiotic bacteria found in normal gut flora), both their GI problems and maladaptive behaviors improved.
Back when we frequently encountered predatory animals and were often in a fight or flight situation, this elevated release of cortisol was a very useful thing. A combination of the probiotics, Lactobacillus helveticus and Bifidobacterium longum, was found to reduce cortisol levels.
This is a good thing – colonizing probiotic strains of bacteria in your gut can restore your health. When the researchers supplemented chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers with a live casie strain of L.
Many scientists and doctors therefore recommend that pregnant women take it as a supplement. The brine may be cloudy – full of lactic acid bacterial growth (the desirable probiotics) created during fermentation.
The brine was cloudy, sometimes scummy looking, and every once in a while the barrel emitted a big belch of gas. I was in the neighborhood of old apartment buildings on the south side of Kirkland, where students and other people with little money lived. Reputedly, she’d smuggled her young boys out of Lithuania by walking across the border with them under her voluminous, floor length skirt when the Nazis set about exterminating all the Jews there.
Two antidepressants, mirtazapine (Remeron) and fluoxetine (Prozac), are linked to a nearly 50 percent increased risk for Clostridium difficile infection. Now we have good research and more than enough clinical evidence that specialized probiotic bacteria are essential for health, and also profoundly influence mood. Epigenetics is the study of factors that turn genes on and off and affect how cells read genes.
Probiotics influence activity in our genes, allowing them to express their contents in a positive, disease-fighting manner. In Type 1 diabetes, the immune system attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. These dying cells spew out their contents, and macrophages (another type of immune cell) are called in to clean up the dead cells.
So, as in Type 1 diabetes, glucose builds up in the blood instead of being properly delivered to the cells in the body where they’re needed for fuel.
Unfortunately, Type 2 diabetes is also increasingly being seen in younger people, even children and teens. Their intestinal bacteria were measured by stool samples at the start of the study and again 12 months later.
This drop in gut diversity was accompanied by spikes in inflammation-favoring organisms, gene functions, and serum and stool metabolites. By the time we enter kindergarten, we have vastly different populations living in the different habitats around our bodies.
Research also shows that artificial sweeteners promote diabetes and weight gain by disrupting your gut microbiome.
Our typical diet now has come to contain 10 to 20 parts Omega-6 to every part Omega-3 – producing a highly inflammatory state in the body. As soon as you stand up, a number of molecular cascades occur that promote and support healthy biological functioning. In 2014, 18 million farmers in 28 countries planted biotech crops, with the highest acreage by far here in the US.
Statistics About Diabetes: Data from the National Diabetes Statistics Report, 2014 (released June 10, 2014).
Gut microbiome transplantation, and use of probiotics and prebiotics as new treatment for both diabetes type 1 and 2. VITAMIN D AND PREBIOTICS MAY BENEFIT THE INTESTINAL MICROBACTERIA AND IMPROVE GLUCOSE HOMEOSTASIS IN PREDIABETES AND TYPE 2 DIABETES.
Mike Barrett’s article, 3 Studies Proving Toxic Glyphosate Found in Urine, Blood, and Even Breast Milk. It accomplishes all this by producing large amounts of acid to make our digestive tracts and vaginas inhospitable to pathogenic bacteria and parasites. Psychobiotics could target genes responsible influencing neurotransmitters like GABA that have a strong connection to mood and behavior. Provide it with lots of good microbes (probiotics and psychobiotics) to keep a good balance in there and avoid the bad ones (bacterial pathogens and other toxins) as much as possible. Microbiota modulate behavioral and physiological abnormalities associated with neurodevelopmental disorders. Assessment of psychotropic-like properties of a probiotic formulation (Lactobacillus helveticus R0052 and Bifidobacterium longum R0175) in rats and human subjects. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study of a probiotic in emotional symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome. Belly bacteria boss the brain: Gut microbes can change neurochemistry and influence behavior.
These changes in gut microbial levels did not occur in the at risk children who didn’t progress to Type 1 diabetes. Even differences in our genes influence our microbial populations—indirectly by affecting things like the acidity of the digestive tract, and also more directly through variations in proteins on our cells that communicate with microbes. You may have a genetic predisposition for diabetes but also have a large say in whether your DNA expresses that predisposition in your body. The dynamics of the human infant gut microbiome in development and in progression toward type 1 diabetes.



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