Heal Your Gut, Heal Your Skin

You may not always love the skin you’re in, but there are countless microorganisms that do and are happy to make it their home. Just as the gut houses its own microbiome — colonies of bacteria, fungi, protozoa, and others — the skin has its own living microbiome. “Cumulative evidence” shows that there is bidirectional communication between gut and skin and that what happens in the gut often shows up on the skin.

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The Health Benefits of Skipping Breakfast

There is a reason why most people have little or no appetite on waking: the human body clock and the production of cortisol. Cortisol is an adrenal hormone produced cyclically: levels start to rise between 3 am and 6 am, and within thirty to forty minutes after waking, most people experience a two- to three-fold surge in circulating levels. In what is termed the ‘awakening cortisol response,’ cortisol mobilizes glucose and promotes gluconeogenesis, the manufacture of glucose from fat and protein.

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Do You Have leaky Brain Syndrome?

Your brain is like a powerful command centre, surrounded by a wall to prevent enemy elements from breaching security. Damage to the wall undermines the strength of the command centre. The blood brain barrier is that wall. If compromised, the brain is left vulnerable to assault and subsequent mental health problems

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Why You Crave Junk Food

Feeding potato chips to rats makes them want more, even when they are already full. Humans are remarkably similar. Open that bag and you know how it will end. Even so, go easy on yourself; you’re not weak, you’re normal. Your brain is responding the way it is programmed to respond. The trick is to short-circuit the system — the brain’s reward system.

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How Exercise Changes Your Brain and Your Mood

Beyond the runner’s high lies a biochemical process that is part of the brain’s growth and repair system. Central to that process is a protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). BDNF protects existing brain cells from damage. It strengthens the synapses (a synapse is the structure between nerves, through which messages are transmitted), and helps form new synapses. BDNF is also involved in a process called neurogenesis, the creation of new brain cells.

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Why Giving Up Sugar Is So Good For Your Mental Health

Sugar makes you fat, which is bad enough. But can it really make you depressed? Clinically depressed, even? The evidence is compelling, and it’s a journey that starts with a mild blood sugar imbalance and can end with serious mental illness. Each step of that journey is fuelled by sugar, or more specifically, glucose.

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How Stress Makes You Overeat — And How to Stop it

Stress is bad for your mental health. It’s not great for your heart or immune health, either. Furthermore — and just to rub salt into your wounds — it can also make you fat. But the consequences of stress are not inevitable: once you understand what’s going on, you can fight back.

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Covid-19 and Vitamin D: What to do While You Wait for the Vaccine

Vitamin D can’t stop you from getting infected, but it can mitigate the severity of symptoms, and help get you through the winter. Vitamin D is safe and inexpensive. For that reason, scientists now take the view that by taking it, there is nothing to lose, and potentially much to gain. There are some remarkable similarities between those who are most vulnerable to Covid-19 symptoms, and those most likely to experience vitamin D deficiency.

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Could Parasites be the Cause of Your Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

If you have irritable bowel syndrome, you are familiar with the misery of abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhoea, and/or constipation. It just so happens that these are also common symptoms of a gut parasite infection. If your symptoms have not responded to standard IBS treatment, taking a simple test may be the first step on the road to recovery.

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