The Power of the PROBIOTIC

Believe it or not, your mental health is directly tied to your gut health. Happy bowels = happy brains.

So it follows that when your diet is not-so-great, your mental health is directly affected. Blerg.

Probiotics are the good guys that help your gut to be in tip-top shape. They are in danger of dying when your intake consists of: antibiotics, artificial sugar, unfiltered water, GMOs, grains/glutens, chemicals and certain medications.

Many studies have shown (sources to follow) that PROBIOTICS can save the day by:

  • Increasing BDNF. That is, Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor. This stuff is like fertilizer for new baby brain cells. You want a lot of this stuff.
  • Decreasing Lipid Perioxidase end products. A/k/a bad stuff that is thought to cause cancer. You don’t want any of this stuff.
  • Protecting your intestinal barrier. No more leaky gut. A/k/a the stuff of Autism.
  • Allowing “good” flora to flourish. No more constipation and bloating. Hooray!
  • Boosting your immune system. Generally healthier people are happier.
  • Increasing microbial-produced transmitters like serotonin, dopamine, and GABA. This is also a good thing, since supposedly these are the chaps responsible for making you happy and calm.
  • Improving nutritional absorption by allowing your food to be absorbed more readily, improve gut to brain communication. You paid a lot for that Pumpkin Seed Hummus from Whole Foods. Make sure all of the nutrients actually make it to your brain.

For a more extensive source of probiotic information (and sources), you can visit for a free PDF.

DISCLAIMER: Thanks for reading the above, but whoever you are: unless you are living in my household (which I think I would have noticed), it’s very unlikely that I have any idea what sort of medical history, medication regimen, allergies, and any other health intricacies you carry. Therefore, you should NOT interpret the above as medical advice for yourself, and instead present this information to your personal clinician for consideration.

Another DISCLAIMER: Obviously, the best way to get the best nutrition is through FOOD, not supplements. But for those of us who are still getting the hang of this work-life balance thing, supplements are a way to stay sane when you don’t have time & dinero for meal-planning & organics. Don’t beat yourself up.


We Need a New Direction

I've written about my exasperation previously in regards to the general belief among most patients that there is a magical pill that will cure their complaint, immediately, with no side effects, and that will be 100% paid for by their insurance (see: A Pill for Everything). 

Then, I come across this. 

From Nutrient Power, by Dr. William Walsh

"Psychiatry has made great advances in the past 50 years but needs a new direction. Today's emphasis on prescription psychiatric medications will not stand the test of time [as] benefits usually are partial in nature and involve unpleasant side effects. Medication therapy is more art than science and it involves a considerable amount of trial and error. A fundamental limitation is that psychiatric drugs are foreign molecules that result in an abnormal condition rather than producing normalcy. It is unlikely that psychiatric drugs will ever be universally effective or free of adverse side effects. A new approach is needed."


We can do better. I can do better. How do I begin?