You’ve probably heard something about the connection between your brain and stomach. Probiotics are all the rage and yogurt, sauerkraut, and kombucha are good for you. Packed with the latest scientific research, The Psychobiotic Revolution: Mood, Food, and the New Science of the Gut-Brain Connection informs and fascinates.
The first half of the book focuses on establishing the science behind the gut-brain connection. I learned all about microbiota, aka the community of bacteria living in my gut, and how this bacteria communicate with the brain.
The bacteria living in your stomach, colon, and intestines can have a direct effect on your mood and mental health. A large growth of certain types of bacteria lead to inflammation, and inflammation is known to cause depression and anxiety.
It’s clear everything in the book has been highly researched; the authors are a science journalist, a neuroscientist, and a psychiatrist. And, the last 30 pages are dedicated to a large appendix of references, notes, research, and a glossary.
The second half of the book focuses on psychobiotics, or strains of bacteria that can promote good brain and gut health. This part of the book felt pretty skimm-able, which I appreciated. I could look for what applied to me and leave the rest. I can see myself referencing this book in the future as my mental health and diet needs change.
With that said, none of the advice was groundbreaking, or at least it didn’t feel like it to me. Eating a healthy diet rich in fiber and prebiotics/probiotics, especially fermented foods and yogurt was encouraged. The authors do provide a section on which probiotics are best to purchase depending on your symptoms, which is great since the FDA doesn’t evaluate probiotics, making it difficult to select effective ones.
I found this book fascinating as someone who suffers from mild anxiety, and as a human being who has a stomach and a brain. It was pretty science-heavy and I felt a little lost at times (I did only take one science class in college…and it was environmental science).
I highly suggest checking this book out if you’re a science lover, have stomach or mental health issues, or are just fascinated by the human body. Thanks to TLC Book Tours for a free copy of the book for my honest review.