Importance of Natural Resources

How the Gut Microbiome affects the Brain and Mind


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video. One summer afternoon when Doctor Martin Blaser
was still a medical student, he went to see an eleven-year-old boy who had suddenly become
ill and was hospitalized. He was perfectly fine until two days earlier when he suddenly
developed a fever and an upset stomach. The next day the fever worsened, and on the third
day, the boy developed small purplish dots on his body. The emergency room doctors quickly
realized the boy had Rocky Mountain spotted fever, something caused by a bite from a tick
infected with a type of bacteria called rickettsia. This bacterium multiplies within cells lining
blood vessels, invoking an aggressive immune response. Since this involves the brain’s
blood vessels, it caused a form of encephalitis, a swelling of the brain provoking a massive
headache. When Blaser accompanied doctors to see the
boy, the room was darkened as the light hurt his eyes, his body was covered with purple
spots, and he was thrashing around in his bed covered in sweat. He was yelling incoherently
as loud as he could while hallucinating. As Dr. Blaser explains in his book “Missing
Microbes,” the boy was started on an antibiotic called tetracycline and after just five days,
he was discharged from the hospital. Especially considering the Gut Microbiome
is the big topic in health and science recently, you may know that not all microbes are bad.
While there are pathogenic microbes like these just mentioned, at all times there are 500
to 1000 different species of bacteria in the human body. And the importance of their function
is becoming more apparent as we learn new things about them. However, it’s hard to picture how tiny microbes
in our gut contribute to our day to day cognition and brain function. In the case of rocky mountain
spotted fever it may not be surprising that the introduction of a deadly pathogen could
induce drastic changes in a person’s mental state. However, the relationship between the
microbes normally residing in the gut and how our brain operates becomes apparent when
we take them out. Scientists observing microbe-free mice living
in sterile bubbles quickly noticed that these mice have a personality that is distinct from
mice with gut microbes. Microbe-free mice were found to be more prone to taking risks
and they freely explore their environment. Risk taking might be good if you’re a young
entrepreneur, but the kind of risk these mice engage in is wandering further out in an open
field. For a mouse, this is an excellent strategy for quickly getting killed by a predator.
Not only are the mice unusually reckless, scientists also noticed that these microbe-free
mice have memory-related defects. The book “The Good Gut” by Erica and Justin
Sonnenburg describes how a group of researchers put normal and microbe free mice through some
memory tests. First, the mice were given five minutes to explore two new objects, a small
smooth ring and a large checkered ring. Then the objects were removed for twenty minutes.
After that, the large checkered ring and a new object, a star-shaped cookie cutter, were
put in the cages. Predictably, the mice with the normal microbiota checked out the cookie
cutter and paid less attention to the checkered ring because they already knew what it was.
The microbiota free mice, explored the new cookie cutter, but spent just as much time
checking out the old object – the checkered ring. It seemed that these mice had completely
forgotten an object they had just seen twenty minutes earlier. The forgetfulness in these mice may be explained
by the fact that the microbe free mice have lower levels of BDNF. BDNF, brain-derived
neurotrophic factor is a powerful protein important for learning and memory. It stimulates
the production of new brain cells and strengthens existing ones. Low levels of BDNF are linked
to depression and anxiety. Since making microbe-free humans would be
quite unethical, such experiments haven’t been repeated in humans, but… you may have
heard of the woman who, after receiving a fecal microbiota transplant, became obese.
The fecal microbiota transplant or FMT is just as it sounds, it’s taking the poop
from one healthy person and putting it into another person, in order to share the healthy
microbiota of the donor. FMT is not a common practice, but it’s the most effective treatment
for a Clostridium difficile infection, which causes diarrhea and abdominal pain for weeks.
In this case, the woman’s donor was her 16 year old overweight but otherwise healthy
daughter. The transplant went smoothly and successfully cured the woman’s issues. But,
over a period 16 months, the woman gained 34 pounds. And this happened despite persistent
diet and exercise efforts. She even went on a medically supervised liquid protein diet
and still could not get the weight off. On the flipside of this, it’s been found
that putting the microbiota of lean mice into other mice protects them from gaining weight.
So it looks like a microbiota transplant can transplant body types, but what about personality? In 2011, a research group at McMaster University
did an experiment with two different types of lab mice. One type had a personality that
was the mouse equivalent of anxious and the other type was sociable and extroverted. To
set a metric for how nervous the mice were, they put them on an elevated platform and
recorded how long it took for them to step down. The mice with the anxious personality spent
an average of four and a half minutes slowly and carefully making their way off the platform.
The “extroverted” mice jumped down in seconds. Then, the scientists switched the
microbiota of the two types of mice and did the platform test again. The mice with the
extroverted personality, after receiving the microbes of the anxious mice, now took over
a minute to get off the platform. On the other hand, after getting the microbes from the
extroverted mice, the “anxious” mice got off of the platform a whole minute quicker.
What this group showed was that in these mice, behavior and levels of anxiety were dependent
on which microbes were living in their gut. One other thing: remember BDNF, the protein
that we should like to have more of for better brain function? Well, the microbiota switch
that made the “anxious” mice more “confident” also increased their levels of BDNF. The change
in microbiota not only made observable changes in behavior, but in brain chemistry as well. In fact, there’s all kinds of chemistry
going on in the gut that can affect the brain. There’s even research identifying which
specific microbes produce which neurotransmitters. For example it’s estimated that 90% of our
serotonin is produced in the gut, and it’s been found that some of this serotonin is
produced by these four microbes. These two microbes produce gamma-Aminobutyric
acid or “GABA” – our chief inhibitory neurotransmitter which has relaxing and anti-anxiety
effects. And these two (Bacillus and Serratia) produce
our motivation neurotransmitter, dopamine. [R] So we basically have this huge mass of little
drug factories sitting in our gut pumping out different substances that affect our brain.
In fact the gut and its microbes appears to affect the brain so much that preclinical
research in rodents suggested that certain probiotics have antidepressant and anti-anxiety
effects. Probiotics are basically substances you can take orally to stimulate the growth
of microbes. One study even found that a Bifidobacterium infantis probiotic had anti-depressive effects
on par with that of the anti-depressant drug citalopram. I used to think that the only benefit of fiber
was that it helped you poop. However, considering dietary fiber isn’t food for us but for
our microbes, a diet rich in fiber from a variety of sources should also be good for
our mental health. This information about the gut microbiome
makes you start to wonder how many mental afflictions could be traced back to disruptions
in gut health from, for example, diets rich in fiberless processed foods and refined carbohydrates,
or from the unmitigated use of antibiotics. Antibiotics can be a life saver when absolutely
necessary as we saw at the start of the video, but the most commonly prescribed antibiotic
– a wide-spectrum antibiotic doesn’t just kill the offending bacteria, but all kinds
of other bacteria get caught in the crossfire. This is like poisoning your cat along with
a bunch of cockroaches you’re trying to kill. In the United States alone, tens of millions
of people are prescribed antibiotics for minor afflictions. 60 to 80 percent of children
taken to the doctor complaining of bad sore throats or ear pain will walk out with an
antibiotic. It’s estimated that people will take 30 courses of antibiotics by the age
of 40. But, the highest prescription rate was for children under the age of two with
1,365 courses per 1000 babies. So, could all these antibiotics affect the
young gut microbiome and the brain development of these children? A 2012 paper by Dr. Derrick MacFabe describes
what happens when rats are injected with something called Propionic Acid or PPA. The PPA injection
provoked peculiar changes in the rats’ brains like neuroinflammation, increased oxidative
stress, and glutathione depletion.The rats also displayed abnormal movements, repetitive
interests, cognitive deficits, and impaired social interactions. Basically, the results
of this injection were very similar to autism spectrum disorders. And, PPA is a fermentation
product of bacteria, namely Desulfovibrio, Bacteroidetes and Clostridia. It was found
that patients with autism have many more species of the clostridium bacteria and have high
levels of PPA in their feces. It’s estimated that in one third of patients,
autism doesn’t show up until around 18 to 24 months. Several reports from parents say
that their children were developing normally until they received antibiotics for upper
respiratory or ear infections. According to Dr. Sydney Finegold, antibiotics wipe out
or suppress several organisms in the gut, but Clostridia is one of the ones that persists. A CBC program titled “The Autism Enigma”
features Ellen Bolte who explains how her son Andrew’s behavior changed drastically
after 6 courses of antibiotics over a 2 to 3 ½ month period for an ear infection. After
this, he was diagnosed with severe autism. Digging into the research, Ellen came across
information about the Clostridia bacteria, so she started searching for a doctor who
would be willing to try an antibiotic called “vancomycin” on Andrew. Vancomycin is
specifically designed to target the Clostridia bacteria. After she finally found a doctor
who agreed to test her theory, they tried the antibiotic and it had impressive effects.
“The results were astounding. Within a matter of just a few weeks, he became calm. He was
aware of his environment… he’s putting puzzles together…” The antibiotic brought out improvements
in Andrew that were transient but drastic. This case lead to a pilot study with Dr. Finegold
and a Dr. R Sandler who found that out of 10 autistic children treated with vancomycin,
8 of them had again transient but significant improvements. Now, jumping to conclusions about the cause
autism has not been… helpful in the past… but this idea that autism could be the result
of a disturbed gut is gathering more and more data. A disturbed gut ecosystem would also
explain the very common gastrointestinal issues autistic children suffer. Some estimates say
that as high as 70% of children with autism spectrum disorders also have gastrointestinal
issues. Autism is just one of the disorders that can
be linked to a disruption in gut health, and research on the gut microbiome is growing
quickly. About 3600 related articles on this topic were published between 2010 and 2015.
At this point, saying the gut microbiome is important to health is an understatement.
Dr. Martin Blaser says that “losing your entire microbiome outright would be nearly
as bad as losing your kidneys or liver.” Unlike the kidneys or liver however, you can
change the makeup of your microbiome with what you put into your mouth. I guess Hippocrates knew what he was talking
about when he said “All disease begins in the gut,” and “Let food be thy medicine.” This video was brought to you by Squarespace.
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Reader Comments

  1. that argument is a stretch but will tolerate it and watch. that's like saying only bacteria that consume fiber stabilize well being. i have a theory about aromatic herbs based on the way i feel after consuming them.

  2. If exchanging bacteria also may change behavior, then I would theorize that a husband and wife exchange LOTS of bacteria. Would that mean that their microbiome would synch up and they would begin to behave alike? Could our microbiome unite a husband and wife?

  3. How dare you hurt mice? They are innocent animals. And those drugs are worse than meth. I hate you right now? You asshole hurting mice. Karma is LAW so watch out? How dare you? You take the drugs u gave the mice aye? Lol, u would be dead in 5 days? Weak heartless prick

  4. Many of u have weeds near u that are very healthy one is called purslane, just make sure u know the copycat poison one .

  5. 5k-10k different kinds of bacteria?? Bro there's over 40k discovered typed of bacteria and not everyone has the same. There is trillions on top of trillions of bacteria with out it. We would not exist.

  6. My dads got autism and he never used to eat fiber. He used to abuse me and now Ive got medication resistant schizophrenia. So like there should be a war on morons that drink, watch sport and only eat meat?.

  7. Iam sure that future understanding of gut flora will come to know that everything we are comes from the bacteria inside us our thoughts our senses our cravings are all from the microbes within.
    Life within. More than Human DNA..

  8. I had issues with short term memory, anxiety, energy and poor cognition. I also had very autistic and antisocial behaviors for years. I took perscribed probiotics and all symptoms disappeared within less than a week

  9. Would the intravenous or intramuscular administration of antibiotics make a difference in the impact on gut bacteria?

  10. I'm in my mid 30's and my parents are boomers. They still believe antibiotics are a cure-all, SMH. 🙁

  11. As someone with high functioning autism and ADD, I also grew up with constant gut issues. This eventually spread out into nerve issues, muscle weakness, headaches, tiredness, etc. I had seen so many doctors about my mystery health problems in the past, to no success. About 7 years ago, I decided to try the candida diet (a no carb diet involving anti-fungals and probiotics, even more restrictive than keto).
    The results were life changing and it showed me firsthand that there was definitely a link between the gut and mind. Not only did it fix the physical symptoms I had been experiencing, it affected the mental ones. I never expected my lifelong autism related issues to also see a change, but I found myself more clear headed and focused, able to socialise more effectively, read social cues, not be as affected by too much stimuli, and stop fidgeting. Like, it was a HUGE change. I'm a completely different person than I was before.
    It's still frustrating going to doctors and having them be uninformed about gut health and everything it affects, but it's also encouraging seeing more and more research come out about it.

  12. So basically what he is saying is that autism IS curable!? At least a majority of it? It makes sense. We started seeing a larger amount of autism cases around the same time we started prescribing a ridiculous amount of antibiotics. Also, who knows if vaccines can throw off your gut bacteria as well. Keto diet is know to help autism tremendously and it has a lot to do with the gut. Maybe they should start testing everyone’s gut bacteria after a diagnosis to know how to treat people naturally. It’s sad we all just learned more from this one short episode on this channel that most doctors would even be taught on the subject.

  13. Not one mention of the pseudo-medical condition "candida". It's entertaining to listen to hardcore believers in candida explain their supposed medical issues of good / bad gut bacteria, and yet often dismiss the concept of somatic symptoms.

  14. My gut bacteria has been in serious trouble since given some strong medication several years ago which led to ulcers and other issues. Has not been the same since.

  15. So, paranoid mom's shouldn't worry about vaccines, they should be cautious of broad spectrum antibiotics. That information might just saves some lives.

  16. This was a fantastic video. So much fascinating information. Really liking your channel more and more everyday. Keep up your brilliant work you're one of the best things about the internet.

  17. I never took gut health seriously till I messed it completely, what helped me was quitting smoking and intermittent fasting

  18. So Dr. Kellog was correct by performing Colon hydrotherapy or flushing out the toxins with organic (( green)) unroasted coffee. Then adding back raw “ goats yogurt “ liquified with 8 parts spring water and 2 parts yogurt….???

  19. How many times do we have to say there is no such thing as an "extroverted" rat or person. There are extroverted and introverted functions though

  20. I learned this some time ago. Now i eat fermented cabbage unpasteurized aka Sauerkraut. I hope it will help

  21. Neither Wakefield, nor the people who recognized the gut/brain connection and the already recognized and admitted neuro damage from the ingredients in vaccines which are listed right on the vaccine inserts, did not jump to conclusions, but instead pointed out in a scientific study a truth about the gut/brain connection. leaky gut <-> leaky brain. Censoring the known effects of heavy metals (aluminium, mercury) and other toxins in vaccines and the effects on the microbiome has only served to improve awareness and educate the public on the truth about what it takes to be a healthy human.

  22. seeing this vid had me take a magnifying glass and read the label of some equate 'Probiotic'
    30 capsule pills from wal-mart. all 3 of its bacteria strains are for GABA.
    next is to re-visit store and shop for the ones that promote serotonin & dopamine

    kudos to wil for making this informative vid

  23. Put down some duct tape in a 2 / 2 foot ring shape on floor , train your cat ,to love that ring . Who says Diamonds are a girls best friend? LOL . It’s true,try it .
    On a more serious note serotonin and Dopamineis produced in the gut , take Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar, because every disease begins in the gut.
    Dr Daniel Amen on Success Magazine/ TEDxBismarck.
    Dr William Li,TEDxBismarck.
    Dr Neal Barnard TEDxBismarck.
    Dr Leonard Coldwell Cancer Cure .
    Dr Burnitski,The Cancer Cure Cover Up Conspiracy Documentary.
    [email protected] k2, Iodine,Vitamin b12, ReMag , Best Liquid Magnesium, by Dr Carolyn Dean .

  24. I think it is important to note the life saved by antibiotics in the beginning of the video was in a television show..(the treatment may or may not correspond to reality) .. also this video doesn't provide all its sources. Just a few words from a paper.

  25. 3:50 . Interesting that you're suggesting it's not unethical to do whatever we want to other mammals that aren't as smart as us.

  26. The part about antibiotics being prescribed to babies made me angry and disturbed. They are barely alive & these pharmaceuticals are already getting at them.

  27. We have more microbes than human cells if all we have if gram negative bacteria and fungus overgrowth we are just going too be filled with toxins ( mycotoxins) and inflammation Fungal toxins have been recognized as a chemical weapon used in warfare……this has been known for decades

  28. That was like listening to my biography. I have a genetic polymorphism where my gut doesn't produce an oligosaccharide whose purpose is to support essential bacteria in the mucosal layer, most notably bifidobacterium. This sugar is present in breast milk but my mother chose formula instead. Having not been inoculated I nearly died from whooping cough as a baby and was given antibiotics. Sheesh.

  29. Your videos are usually great, but why do you ignore SIBO?
    Why is everyone obsessed with increasing the gut bacteria and microbes but not paying attention to the excess of them?
    Gas and sticky stools? IBS? Anyone?

  30. I am sorry I have a dark twisted sense of humor but, there is

    a dank joke about sodomy being the new health panacea in there
    somewhere.

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