Boost My Fibre For Mental Health
Fibre is a wonderful thing for many reasons. It improves gut health, can lower cholesterol and blood pressure, help you lose weight, and a whole host of other amazing benefits. However, did you know that it can also improve your mental health?
That’s right! It turns out that fibre can actually have a positive effect on mental health conditions such as stress, depression and anxiety. That might sound a little odd, but it’s even stranger when you consider that it’s apparently all down to the bacteria living in your intestines.
It all starts with prebiotic fibre, certain types of sugar molecules that form the non-digestible parts of certain foods, including various fruits and vegetables, pulses, grains, and more. It moves through your gut and begins a process called fermentation, which creates short-chain fatty acids that feed the good bacteria that we require for a healthy digestive system.
These short-chain fatty acids and the bacteria that love feeding on them have been shown to affect both emotional processing and stress hormone levels.
This was the focus of a study by scientists from Oxford University. Previously, such research had only shown such an effect of prebiotics on animal behaviour, but it turns out that it can impact humans as well.
People who suffer from psychological issues, such as stress and anxiety, also often experience digestive symptoms, and past studies have shown that the type and number of bacteria in the gut can have an effect on anxiety levels.
The researchers studied two groups of healthy volunteers. The groups would take either one of two types of prebiotic fibre or a placebo every morning for three weeks. Following this, the volunteers undertook a test to measure emotional processing, and the results were very interesting.
The results of the test showed that the group that took the prebiotics every day paid less attention to negative words and more attention to positive words compared to the volunteers that took the placebo. That might sound like a rather strange conclusion, but for those who suffer from anxiety and depression, it could be a big deal and make a significant impact on their lives.
The effects of this test were said to be similar to results of people given anti-anxiety or anti-depression medication and asked to complete the test. This suggests that prebiotics could have therapeutic uses for those who have anxiety or depression, although the study’s senior author, Dr Philip Burnet, indicated that it’s likely they would be used alongside more traditional treatments rather than as a replacement.
It was also found that the group that took the prebiotics had lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol in their saliva at the end of the three weeks.
Some animal studies have shown that gut bacteria levels in early life go on to shape a creature’s stress system and how its body deals with stress in later life. The Oxford study goes to show that the two still go hand in hand.
We know that stress plays a major role in the onset of mental health disorders, and can also increase the chances of us developing other conditions such as Crohn’s disease and irritable bowel syndrome. It’s therefore pretty clear that increasing our levels of prebiotic fibre can only be good for us.
How can Boost My Fibre help?
It’s no secret that most of us don’t get as much fibre as we should. Government guidelines suggest we should consume around 30g of fibre every day, but the reality is that we only eat an average of about 18g. As we’ve already read, this could have a potentially negative impact on our mental health.
Boost My Fibre is an easy-to-use fibre supplement that can either be added to water or sprinkled over your food (without affecting their taste in anyway), and is a simple way of increasing the amount of fibre in your diet.
The main ingredient in the Boost My Fibre supplement is one of the richest sources of natural fibres, so if you know you probably don’t get enough, it can help top you up. As well as being beneficial for your mental health, Boost My Fibre can help treat constipation, lower cholesterol and blood pressure, and play a part in helping you lose weight – what’s not to love?!
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What to do if you’re suffering from mental health issues
We’re not going to claim that taking a fibre supplement is going to solve all your problems, but it can help alongside other treatments. If you do find yourself struggling with mental health issues such as anxiety and depression, it’s important to speak to someone, whether that’s a doctor, friends and family, or someone who’s trained to listen.
Eating healthily can play a very important role, as can making time to spend time outside and get more exercise. However, if you do want to talk to someone, here are some contact details that may come in useful:
Tel: 0300 123 3393