The chronic pain epidemic has opened up many doors as to the way practitioners approach pain and how the multiple systems of our body are intimately connected. It has also made us realize that this metaphor of the mind-body connection is no longer just a metaphor. Nowhere is this more exquisitely expressed than in the connection between our gut and our brain, or what is called the gut-brain axis (GBA). Your brain and gut are connected by an extensive network of neurons and a highway of hormones that are constantly providing feedback as to how hungry you are, whether or not you're experiencing stress, if you've ingested something that's bad like bacteria or a microbe, and if you're experiencing unpleasant sensations such as pain. Research suggests there exists a rich and dynamic relationship between your enteric nervous system, that's the nervous system in your gut often referred to as your second brain, and your central nervous system. This innovative construct offers both practitioners and patients a window into understanding the mind-body connection, as well as further understanding how chronic pain develops and process. Chiropractic physician and certified nutrition specialist, Dr. Jason Piken, discusses food and nutrition as it relates to the gut-brain connection, as well as a few key nutritional supplements.
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