Balancing bacteria in your gut

There is a well-known connection between the brain and the gut. The trillions of bacteria living in a person’s gut (gut microbiome) can communicate directly with the brain via the Vagus Nerve that connects them.  Gut bacteria can also communicate with the brain via the enteric nervous system, the nervous system of the digestive track.  Surprisingly, there are more neurons wrapped around the gut than there are in the spinal cord.

Gut bacteria produce hundreds of neurochemicals that the brain uses to regulate basic physiological processes as well as mental processes such as learning, memory and mood. For example, it is gut bacteria that manufactures about 95 percent of the body's supply of serotonin, which is important in reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Further to that, gut bacteria also regulate digestion and metabolism. They extract and make vitamins (such as B vitamins) and other nutrients from food that you eat. They program the body's immune system.

Simply put, if your gut bacteria is out of balance it’s more than likely your health and wellbeing will be compromised. Therefore, a diet that promotes balanced gut bacteria adds value to your child’s overall and sustained wellbeing.

Bioscreen testing may also be used as part of your child’s treatment. Bioscreen testing is faecal testing different from what your GP is likely to test as most GPs look for abnormal bacteria and parasites that should not be in the gut. The Bioscreen test is a specialist test that cultures and counts the bacteria that should be normally in the gut. It determines what good bacteria are missing so you can work on replacing those important bacteria.