It Protects Stomach Health In Depression
Gastric symptoms are very pronounced in major depressive disorder in a few individuals. This could involve bloating, constipation, diarrhoea, loss of appetite or even food intolerance.
Certain conditions may co-occur with depression like irritable bowel syndrome. Probiotics help in relievingcolicky abdominal pain and symptoms like bloating, flatulence in IBS.
They also help in reducing symptom severity in IBD.
Diop et al. conducted a study where individuals facing stress were treated with probiotic preparation for 3 weeks. The treatment reduced stress induced gastric symptoms like abdominal pain and nausea/vomiting.
Quick Gist: Probiotic consumption relieves stress related gastric symptoms in depression.
Search Strategy And Eligibility Criteria
A systematic search of the literature was conducted in Embase, MEDLINE, and PsycINFO to identify studies relevant to the current review. The following search string was applied: AND . The search results were limited to: English-language publications and peer-reviewed journals. This was supplemented with a search of the references of all prior systematic reviews of probiotics in relation to mental health as a general construct and depression and anxiety specifically . This search strategy yielded a total of 1,911 articles, of which 1,475 were unique reports. In cases where eligibility could not be ruled out based on the title and abstract, the full text was also examined. Each search result was independently reviewed for eligibility by two of the authors, with discrepancies resolved by the first author.
The study inclusion criteria were: a controlled clinical trial investigating the effects of prebiotics or probiotics on depression or anxiety studies conducted with human participants prebiotics and/or probiotics were the only active components of the treatment condition and depression and anxiety were analyzed separately from each other and other outcomes.
Jarrow Formulas Ideal Bowel Support
Those that dont want to populate their gut with a myriad of bacteria may want to consider Jarrow Formulas Ideal Bowel Support product. The product consists solely of an L. Plantarum strain with 10 billion CFUs per capsule. Many users have testified that this product has improved their gastrointestinal function.
Whether L. Plantarum is thought to decrease inflammatory biomarkers, preserve cognition, and enhance BNDF production in animals. Whether something similar occurs among humans that supplement with it isnt fully understood. Although this product is a single strain, it has relatively low CFUs per capsule compared to others at 10 billion.
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How To Determine The Best Probiotic For You
Due to the fact that the technology is not yet available, it is difficult to determine exactly how youll respond to a particular probiotic prior to taking it. This means that youll likely need to be your own guinea pig in regards to testing various products and finding what yields the best psychological outcomes. Keep in mind that you may not respond well to any probiotic and may find them all relatively useless for improving your neurogastroenterological function. That said, below are some steps you can follow when attempting to find the ideal probiotic.
Review Of The Evidence
To conduct their review, the authors searched for English-language studies published between 2003 and 2019.
The studies needed to include human participants who were 18 years of age or older, had clinically recognized anxiety or depression, and had received a dietary prebiotic or probiotic intervention. These criteria left seven studies for the review.
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Emerging Trends In Substance Misuse:
- MethamphetamineIn 2019, NSDUH data show that approximately 2 million people used methamphetamine in the past year. Approximately 1 million people had a methamphetamine use disorder, which was higher than the percentage in 2016, but similar to the percentages in 2015 and 2018. The National Institute on Drug Abuse Data shows that overdose death rates involving methamphetamine have quadrupled from 2011 to 2017. Frequent meth use is associated with mood disturbances, hallucinations, and paranoia.
- CocaineIn 2019, NSDUH data show an estimated 5.5 million people aged 12 or older were past users of cocaine, including about 778,000 users of crack. The CDC reports that overdose deaths involving have increased by one-third from 2016 to 2017. In the short term, cocaine use can result in increased blood pressure, restlessness, and irritability. In the long term, severe medical complications of cocaine use include heart attacks, seizures, and abdominal pain.
- KratomIn 2019, NSDUH data show that about 825,000 people had used Kratom in the past month. Kratom is a tropical plant that grows naturally in Southeast Asia with leaves that can have psychotropic effects by affecting opioid brain receptors. It is currently unregulated and has risk of abuse and dependence. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that health effects of Kratom can include nausea, itching, seizures, and hallucinations.
It Reduces Gut And Systemic Inflammation In Depression
The intestines form a very important line of defense against infections. The inflammation of the gut can lead to systemic inflammation and affect immune function.
Also, inflammation of the gut is also linked with the development of depression as secretion of inflammatory agents can affect brain function.
Probiotics have natural anti-inflammatory property, and they help alleviate gut inflammation. Their intake also alleviates other inflammatory disorders that may occur with depression like inflammatory bowel disease or arthritis.
A study published in Journal of Neuroscience, 2015 demonstrated that probiotic intake reduces sickness associated with systemic inflammatory disorders. And inflammation is one of the important markers of depression.
Quick Gist: Probiotics help reduce gut and systemic inflammation. Reduction in inflammatory agents helps improve brain function which in turn benefits in depression.
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Changes In Hads And Quality Of Life Scores
The HADS score and the EQ-5D-5L score improved significantly after 1 month and continued to improve after 2 months of using the multispecies probiotics. The mean HADS score decreased from 20.0 to 7.2 and 4.9 , and the mean EQ-5D-5L score increased from 0.67 to 0.82 and 0.85 after 1 and 2 months, respectively. All differences were statistically significant .
Figure 1 Changes of HADS and EQ5D5L score before and after using the multispecies probiotics product.
Covered In This Episode
Emerging research connecting probiotics and mood Diet and mood Choosing the right probiotic Pharmacological treatments vs natural interventions The importance of handouts and resources for the patient Neurotransmitters and the gut Establishing a normal microbiome Targeting the microbiome Other nutrients and foods that can improve the gut microbiome Researching therapeutics in healthy vs clinical populations and the power of the placebo Additional gut soothing foods and herbs Adrians preferred strains Probiotic containing foods Closing remarks
Andrew: This is FX Medicine. I’m Andrew Whitfield-Cook. Joining us on the line again today is Dr Adrian Lopresti. He’s a clinical psychologist in private practice, managing director of his own contract research organisation, and senior researcher at Murdoch University Western Australia. He has over 20 years of clinical experience working with children and adults suffering from a range of mental health conditions. He has experience in a range of psychological therapies and has received extensive training in nutritional and lifestyle treatment for mental health disorders.
Dr Lopresti regularly publishes in peer-reviewed, high impact journals on numerous disorders and has completed several clinical trials, investigating the effects of curcumin, saffron, and ashwagandha in the treatment of anxiety and depression in children and adults. Welcome back to FX Medicine. Adrian, how are you?
Adrian: Good, Andrew. Thanks for having me back.
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Other Things That Can Affect Your Gut Bacteria
Keep in mind that there are many things that can directly alter your gut bacteria besides a probiotic. Hypothetically speaking, if you are sedentary and dont get any physical activity on a daily basis youll have dramatically different gut microbiota than if you jogged several miles per day or lifted weights. The effects of certain lifestyle changes on gut microbiota havent been fully elucidated, but consider that your: diet, drug usage, supplement regimen, environment, exercise, sleep, and stress level can influence your gut, which as is known, can alter brain function.
Prebiotic Trials For Depression And Anxiety
The compounds evaluated in the prebiotic trials included Bimuno®-galactooligosaccharide , fructooligosaccharide , GOS, and short-chain FOS , all possessing bifidogenic properties. One three-arm study separately evaluated B-GOS and FOS. Length of prebiotic administration across trials ranged from four hours to four weeks. Across five prebiotics trials for depression , no difference was observed between prebiotic and control conditions . Similarly, a significant effect was not observed across four prebiotic trials for anxiety . These results remained essentially unchanged in sensitivity analyses limited to studies of FOS and scFOS for depression and anxiety, respectively .
Forest plots of standardized effect sizes of prebiotic and probiotic trials for depression and anxiety.
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Your Microbiome Composition And Mental Health
Its clear there is a link between gut bacteria and depression. The composition of the gut microbiome can tell you a lot about what is going on inside your body. Remember that everyones gut microbiome is unique, but diversity is a proven factor in keeping your body healthy.
Fortunately, its now easy to get your personal microbiome health status with at-home testing. You can see how diverse your microbiome is, how well it produces butyrate, and even what foods you should eat to support a healthy and happy microbial ecosystem.
Microbiota Implicated Among Those With Major Depression
A study published by Jiang et al. investigated the microbiota implicated among individuals that had been diagnosed with major depressive disorder . They specifically assessed the fecal matter of 46 individuals with major depression and compared it to 30 healthy controls. Among the depressed individuals, increases in the concentrations of the following phyla were apparent:
- Bacteroidetes Specifically it was found bacteria within the genus Alistipes were higher among those with depression than healthy controls.
Interestingly, there was an inverse correlation between Firmicutes in the stool and depression. Those with greater concentrations of Firmicutes were less likely to be depressed. An earlier study by Naseribafrouei et al. documented a plethora of Bacteroidales in the stool of those with depression, whereas the quantity of Lachnospiraceae was considered insufficient compared to healthy individuals. It seems as though when these strains are overpopulated relative to healthy strains, mood disorders may be more likely to occur.
How Long Would Probiotics Take To Help With Stress And Anxiety
The question of how long probiotics take to work is one that many people ask when they start looking at the benefits of taking them. Unfortunately, it is not an easy question to answer as there are so many variables. Everyones microbiome is completely different, in fact, it is believed that our gut microbiome is as unique to us as our fingerprint, which means that people will respond differently. For some people, the effects will be felt within just days or weeks, but for others, it may take longer. To read more about how long it takes for probiotics to work, read How do probiotics work?
Other Ways Probiotics May Treat Depression And Anxiety
There remains a myriad of ways by which probiotics and prebiotics may improve symptoms of depression and anxiety. Administration of the right probiotics can reduce inflammation, lower Substance P, deliver neurotransmitters to the brain, alter hormone concentrations, and reduce HPA axis activity. In addition, probiotics may repair intestinal barriers to improve nutrient absorption while simultaneously overtaking pathogenic bacteria the culmination of which may directly increase well-being.
Anti-inflammatory: Individuals with depression, anxiety, and excess stress often have simultaneous inflammation. Some experts believe that chronic, low level inflammation is implicated in the pathogenesis of many neuropsychiatric disorders. Interestingly, some research highlights that taking anti-inflammatory agents for depression may be an effective treatment.
In many cases, inflammation is perpetuated and/or exacerbated by the presence of pathogenic bacteria in the gut. This inflammation also facilitates increases in Substance P, a neurotransmitter associated with depression. Probiotics reduce pathogenic bacteria, decrease inflammation, lower Substance P and ultimately could improve mood.
Ultimately when someone is highly stressed, anxious, and/or possibly depressed they may have abnormally high cortisol. Probiotics are thought to reduce activity within the HPA axis, which inhibits release of stress hormones and may facilitate relaxation and/or positive mood.
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Probiotics For Depression And Anxiety With Dr Adrian Lopresti
Where do probiotics rank in your prescribing hierarchy for mood disorders such as anxiety and depression?
As we deepen our understanding of the gut-brain connection, what’s becoming clear is that probiotics may have a powerful role to play in the management of mental health conditions.
Today we are joined again by clinical psychologist and researcher Dr Adrian Lopresti to help navigate us through the emerging research in this area. Adrian will help to clarify how probiotics are being shown to influence mood, how to select appropriate probiotics and how to incorporate probiotic-containing-foods and herbs as part of a treatment plan for addressing anxiety and depression in patients.
Can Probiotics Improve Your Mood
By now, we know that a healthy diet is important for physical well-being. Researchers are studying whether probiotics live bacteria that are safe to eat can improve gastrointestinal health and your mood.
Probiotics are what we believe to be good organisms that are beneficial to our health. But do they work?
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Anxiety May Start In The Gut
Its no secret that people with gut health problems often feel anxious or depressed. But whichcomes first, the mental health challengeor the gut symptoms?
- A 2016 study of 1,900 people found that two-thirds ofthem experienced irritable bowel syndrome before mental health symptoms, implyingthat for many people, the gut disturbance was the source of their anxiety.
Another way to think about this connection is by considering the role of a leaky gut. Gut inflammation can make the gut lining permeable, which allows bacterial toxins to enter the bloodstream. These toxins have been shown to contribute to anxiety and depression symptoms. [9
The Vagus Nerve Connects Your Gut And Your Brain
Your gut and brain are connected by the vagus nerve, a major component of the autonomic nervous system which enables you to breathe, digest food, and swallow automatically. This nerve is able to send messages to your brain for your colon, and vice versa.
The connection between the two organs means that the gut-brain axis is becoming a vital player in mental health, illnesses that affect the brain, and even irritable bowel syndrome . It explains why stress can take a toll on your digestion, but also why digestive problems can make you unhappy.
Probiotic Trials For Depression And Anxiety
With two exceptions focusing exclusively on Bifidobacterium longum and Bacillus coagulans , respectively, all probiotic trials investigated lactobacilli alone or in combination with species from other genera, most often Bifidobacterium. Duration of probiotic administration across trials ranged from eight days to 45 weeks.
Funnel plot for effect sizes in the meta-analyses. The vertical line indicates the weighted mean effect. Open circles indicate observed effects for actual studies, and closed circles indicate imputed effects for studies believed to be missing due to publication bias. The clear diamond reflects the unadjusted weighted mean effect size, whereas the black diamond reflects the weighted mean effect size after adjusting for publication bias.
There were 22 trials with 23 unique effects for probiotics and anxiety . An outlier was identified and excluded from all analyses. Probiotic administration was associated with lower anxiety relative to placebo at the end of treatment . As significant heterogeneity was not observed , moderator analyses were not conducted. Evidence of publication bias was modest. Specifically, the result of Eggers regression test was not significant , and the pooled effect size produced with the trim-and-fill method adjusting for imputed missing significant effects remained largely unchanged . The funnel plot of effect sizes was essentially symmetrical, with two imputed effects favoring treatment .
A Probiotic Solution To Depression And Anxiety
Two probiotic strains have been shown to significantly reduce depression and anxiety. A controlled study showed a 50% improvement in depression scores.
By Michael Downey, Health & Wellness Author.
Many people who suffer from depression and anxiety are resistant to conventional treatments.
Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey for the 2011-2014 period show that anti-depressant drug use increased 65% since 1999.1
Individual responses to depression treatments vary greatly from one person to another.
Among those taking antidepressants, 30%-50% find their initial treatment doesnt work,2,3 and two-thirds experience at least one side effectincluding nausea, weight gain, fatigue, sexual dysfunction, and in some cases, suicidal thoughts.3,4
Scientists have found a new way to relieve mood disorders: probiotics.
One human study showed a 50% improvement in depression scores with these two probiotics, and another showed a 55% improvement in anxiety scoresall without side effects.5,6
Scientists have now combined these probiotics with an extract of the spice saffron that has been shown to be equally as beneficial as anti-depressant drugs to reduce depressionwithout side effects.7-10
The result is a safe, powerful new way to relieve depression and anxiety and boost overall mood.
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