Food, Mood, Gut Bacteria & Prozac

In this article, I share some amazing facts about your intestines, which spice works as well as Prozac, and the common symptoms of a damaged gut to look out for:

Have you ever noticed a but of anxiety after eating sugar? Or feeling blue when you are constipated? What you eat affects the way you feel! The latest science shows that microbes in your digestive tract can determine how happy you are (by affecting serotonin production), which cravings you will experience (by talking to your brain), how many nutrients you extract from your food,  and the strength of your immune system!!


You are already familiar with having a “gut instinct”, but most women I talk to have no idea that the gastro system (all the way from eat to poop) has a mind of its own:

Why Did No-one Tell You This Before?!!
Some people call the gastro system (gastrointestinal) the inner skin.  And I’d have to agree.  Think about it!  Your gastro system is essentially a long, bendy, packed in, super-amazing tube that goes from lips to anus (I will never watch it, but I believe there’s a nasty film called The Human Caterpillar that takes this about two-gazillion steps too far).  Here is your amazing internal skin:

what i need you to know about GI tract image

Just as your outer skin stops nasties coming in,  your inner skin also forms a protective barrier from the outside world, – your gastro system stops attacks from unwanted invaders entering through your mouth.  Ideally, your inner skin is very selective about what it lets in through its pores (membranes) and into your blood.  Anything that does get into your blood will be carried off to your all your organs (eg, brain, liver, heart) and cells.  Your inner skin is absolutely covered in bacteria – as it should be!

noun – a microscopic organism, especially a bacterium, virus, or fungus.

Amazing Facts About Your Microbiome!

Your body is made up of 10 times more bacterial cells than human cells!

So think about that next time you’re tempted to weigh yourself and feel down about the number.  Maybe you’re just hosting another pound of giggling bacterial cells.  Good on ya! 

You provide a home for 150 times more bacterial genes than human genes!

So you are more bacteria than human – but it’s not even that I want to share with you….. 

There are at least TEN TRILLION, micro-organisms in your gastro apparatus!

That looks like 1,000,000,000,000 (or ten to the power of 13 for those that want to know). 

But want I need to share will is even more useful and practical for daily life than that…


Did you read that correctly?  What we all think as ‘the happy hormone’, serotonin, is produced primarily in your intestines!  

Your gut bacteria and brain are talking to each other all the time via your “Bi-Directional Gut-Brain-Axis”, in other words, your brain and gut are in constant conversation.  So could that be the real reason why you feel anxious when you eat a ton of sugar (not just because you ‘slipped up’ again!), and why when you’re constipated you can also feel miserable, and vice versa (many depressed people get constipated).

Food and Mood – It’s More Than Just  The Nutrients You Take In:


It’s about:

– which bacteria are thriving in your intestines, how many of them

– your ability to absorb the nutrients you eat (bacteria help with this)

– how robust your intestinal lining is – ensures you do not absorb large particles of food or chemicals into your blood stream (leaky gut, inflammation and food intolerance),

– having a robust immune response

What Every Woman Should Know About Prozac

The active component of turmeric, curcumin, is AS EFFECTIVE AS PROZAC in treating Major Depressive Disorder (MDD).  This may be a very welcome fact for the thousands (and more) ladies out there that are feeling blue but have resisted taking prescribed antidepressants.  If you think you may have depression, then always seek out expert advice from a doctor, psychotherapist or other health professional.

If you want the full clinical dose it’s 1000mg Curcumin Capsules – one a day.

As with any supplement, give it 6-12 weeks to get a fuller effect and then carry on for a total of 6 months before tapering off and monitoring.  If you taper off curcumin supplements, then be sure to use turmeric in your food and drinks to keep beneficial levels sustained. (Medical Disclaimer: I am not a Doctor –  MDD is not the same as mild or moderate depression, and you should not stop or start taking any medication without first talking to your trusted health practitioner).

How We Can All Encourage More Serotonin:

I have organic turmeric powder everyday (why wait until you need it?).  Boost mood by adding turmeric to cooking and warm drinks.  Over time,  you will gradually recognise it’s feel good effects.

Add a dash to hot drinks, hot cooking and over yogurt and cereals (I do the same with cinnamon too for its blood sugar balancing natural powers).

Not only is turmeric mood boosting, it’s also a powerful anti-inflammatory (take some daily to help with pelvic pain of any kind including periods) and an antioxidant (slows ageing and cancer preventative).  It’s a no-brainier.

When To Get Help – Common Signs of A Damaged Gut (and a gut bacteria imbalance)

  • Look out for any food reactions that could be compromising the ability of your internals to do their job properly – dairy, gluten, eggs, nuts and soy are common gut irritants.
  • If you have IBS then this is also a signal that your gut bacteria could be imbalanced.
  • If you have been under chronic stress (that includes tumultuous relationships as well as: stressful jobs, tons of hard out exercise every day, and not getting enough sleep) then your internal skin could have holes in it and be making you feel tired, sick and unwell.
  • Feeling tired or getting a sore throat or achy body, sniffy nose, bloating, mucus or anything else after eating are key signs of a food intolerance.  See this article for more about that.

If you do think you have an intolerance, see this article for more help.  An Integrative health Coach, Nutritionist, Naturopath, Nurse or Medical Doctor can support you with gut healing.

About Claire Bhavani

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