Trust Your Gut?

Trust your gut - Brain vs gut

I’m in the checkout lane at the grocery store and there it is, that orange wrapper grabs my attention and it’s saying “Alan, eat me!” My brain says, “Don’t do it, there’s an apple over there,” but my stomach says, “Mmmm chocolate and peanut butter!”

I can’t resist. After all, it’s been a long day and I deserve it. I look to see if any patients are around and slowly place it on the conveyor. Of course I have to eat it right away. I can’t let it melt on the way home.

I get home and unload the car with the rest of the groceries. You know fruits, vegetables, some avocados, eggs, and some salmon.

I am a doctor. I have a healthy eating reputation to maintain. After a few minutes inside, it hits me; that wall, the “I’m tired, and I want to throw on comfy clothes and lounge around.” We have all been in this scenario.

So I ask you, did I trust the wrong “brain”?

Some call the gut your second brain. I sometimes wonder if it’s not the other way around where the gut is actually the first brain. We use phrases like “trust your gut” or “I have a gut feeling about this,” but have you ever heard someone say “I have a brain feeling about this?” or “Trust your brain?”

It doesn’t quite roll of the tongue as easily, does it?

There was a recent study in the Psychosomatic Medical Journal that connects certain gut bacteria and it’s influence on human emotions. I will link the abstract at the end of the page for those interested. Don’t let the sugar-craving bad bacteria win!

Give your body a fighting chance. Eat more vegetables, fruits, and healthy flora-promoting foods. Get a good probiotic! Yes there are good ones and bad ones. Here are two of my favorite food-related quotes, and now you know how the saying originated.

-“Ninety percent of the diseases known to man are caused by cheap foodstuffs. You are what you eat.” –Victor Lindlahr, 1923

“Tell me what you eat and I will tell you what you are.” – Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, 1826

Moral of the story: You have the decision as to what you eat. Think about how you want to feel and deal with the outcome. Give your body the best chance to be healthy!

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