Can Probiotics Help Cure Your Depression?

Apr 22, 2015 at 3:50 pm |

Feeling low? Get Pro…biotics…

We already know probiotics are amazing for our digestive health along with our immune system, but new studies are now showing that they may have a positive effect on our mental health.

Probiotics are a live bacteria that are found in your body and within certain types of food. The easiest way to think of probiotics is like this: all bodies have bacteria in them, no matter what. Some of that bacteria is good and some is bad. Probiotics are the good ones. When you consume foods with probiotics, they actually push out the bad bacteria to make room for their positive vibes.

Studies have already shown that these probiotics are great for your digestive system and your immune system, and a new study by Leiden University has supported the idea that probiotics may help decrease negative feelings and thoughts.

With 40 healthy test subjects, the experiment gave 20 subjects a probiotic drink and the other 20 a placebo. Each person was given a questionnaire (which indexed cognitive reactivity to depression) before and after a 4 week period of probiotic consumption. The study showed, “Compared to subjects who received the placebo intervention, participants who received the multispecies probiotics intervention showed significantly reduced ruminative thoughts.”

While the scientists aren’t completely sure how the probiotics reduce mental negativity, they theorize that the probiotics increase levels of plasma tryptophan, a neurochemical that affects mood, and is often found in the stomach.

There’s still plenty of research that needs to be done. Either way, foods with probiotics are worth adding to your diet.

Would you add probiotics to your diet if they could improve your mental health?