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Is there a Link Between the Role of Brain and Belly?

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This is a Summary to a ted talk Food for thought: How your belly controls your brain by Ruiri Robertson presented at Tedx in Santa Monica. He explores how the human belly plays the role of a second brain. Here is a summary feature of the article

I was listening to a tedx talk presented in Santa Monica by Ruiri Robertson and something really caught my eye on the ideas of the talk.

According to him, humans have for the longest time believed that they only have one brain which is in their head and that it is that one brain that guides their decisions, influences their behavior and other elements of their life. 

Turns out according to Ireland researchers that there is more to how our brain does things such as the way we decide, the way we feel and most importantly how our personalities are shaped.  

According to the Robertson our bellies play an important role of decision-making almost as important as our brains which leads him to dare say that our stomach are as important as our second brain. 

This statement really caught my eye and I was curious to know what makes our bellies to stand out. In presenting an argument on this, Robertson explores how life is controlled by our emotions depending on the situations we are experiencing in our lives. He refers to these emotions as our high and lows.

The high reflect our happy moments while the low reflect the bad moments. In these two scenarios, our brain works with our belly in different ways releasing different chemicals that are in sync with our moods during those times. These chemicals further affect how we respond to the environment around us.

For example, a person who has won a lottery feels (a high) from the rush of neurotransmitters in comparison to one who has just lost their job or made big losses in their lives (a low). that being the case both the highs and lows do not just play out in our heads they also play out in our stomach as well.

In exploring further into the study he refers to a Russian researcher and a Nobel prize winner ( Ilya Mechnikov) Who in the late 1900 had identified the existence of Phagocytes which are crucial to a person's immune system. Robertson wonders how Ilya could see ahead of his time by doing research to show how our immune system guides our understanding of our belly as a second brain.

Ilya believed that each one of us has special phagocytes that we inherit from our mothers at birth and from the food that we consume. He believed that a balance of the right mix of foods could ultimately improve the functionality of the Phagocytes in ones body.

After 1920s coincidentally inline with Ilya’s death the world made a leap in the field of antibiotics which led human beings to shift their practices opting to use antibiotics in their everyday life. These antibiotics have been portrayed to have an impact on our microbiota ( simply put our genetic composition) influencing even the level of cells in our bodies. This explains the failure of immune system to protect ourselves from specific conditions.

According to the video, Antibiotics have not been the only influencers that have weakened our bodies there have also been other issues such as women having children through the C-section. According to him C-section denies a child the essential protection layer that a child would get when they leave the womb through the natural means.

Notwithstanding the human adoption of practices such as the use antibiotics and the C-section option of delivery, Robertson admits that it is quite important for us to inherit these natural immune elements without influecing our bodily structures or the Microbiota.

In showing the importance of this, he highlights how a rat that has been introduced to  microbe Toxoplasma gondii is not afraid of cats.

To even give an in depth perspective he explains how the stomach works when good things happen to us. He says the release of Neurotransmitters tends to propel us even further to the things that we like much like the Rat is pushed to like a cat that naturally it should consider its enemy.

But how far gone are we in failing our bodily systems

To illustrate this he clarifies the progresses that they have made in the discovery of how  by eating certain types of fats throughout one's life, it is possible to drastically change the types of bacteria that reside in ones intestines.

In addition, he highlights that feeding specific strains of bacteria, can enhance memory, stress behavior, and stress hormone levels in animals.

This is no wonder why researchers worldwide, try to identify lists of foods that can act as prebiotics, or foods that can stimulate the growth of healthy bacteria inside our intestines.

In ending the Video, he argues that everyone should work towards healthier lives by understanding how their body works. He emphasizes on all the emotions and feelings that everyone experiences which simply is a highlight of how our bodies are behaving and responding to equip us with know-how on to best survive in the current environment.

In my opinion, this is an insightful video on understanding the importance of our stomach not just as a food basin but also as another brain that influences the decisions we make and personality. 

This video made me to think that our bodies were made well, but we just keep disappointing them with our “sophistication of Things and Modernization".

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Is there a Link Between the Role of Brain and Belly?

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