The Heart, the Brain, the Gut

Have you noticed? There's a lot of talk around town about the gut - our second brain, the forgotten organ they're calling it.

Where has this sudden interest come from? What's so special about it? What has it got to do with our health?

Importantly for us, where does fermented foods and micro organisms fit into it?

All these questions, I've asked and are finding answers. It's a journey for me too. Through The 85 blog, I want to start a conversation, make it more digestible and fun. You know, throw in some funky facts (pun intended - I'm a total nerd, in case you haven't noticed :P)

Starting with how extraordinary our digestive system is. It really is EXTRA ORDINARY.

For a long time, modern medicine focused on the cardiovascular system. That's our heart and all the blood circulating around the body with every breath we take. Fair enough. It's undoubtedly an impressive system

What we've seen in the last 20 to 30 years is more interest in the brain and the nervous system. We can all agree that our cognitive abilities and the human psyche is simply fascinating. Food85 is a big fan of all the research surrounding the effects of meditation that can be documented physically in the grey matter of the brain.



a gut feeling, knots and butterflies in our tummy


Now the time has come for the digestive system to shine. In ways scientists didn't anticipate, this third branch in the triumvirate of our anatomy is remarkably similar to the neurological systems of the brain. It's connected with the same number of neuro receptors as our spinal cord! This means our gut is inextricably tied up with our emotions and wellbeing. No wonder our language has built up around this idea, of having a gut feeling, knots and butterflies in our tummy. Furthermore, the major 2007 discovery of 100 trillion micro organisms that live in our digestive tract and their interaction with the brain has made this mystery even greater. 

We knew our digestive system was important to our health, we just didn't realise exactly just how important. Consider the fact that it is by far the largest organ we have in our bodies - ironed out, 100 times the surface of our skin, 7 kilometres in length, equivalent to a basketball court - the fact that it is solely responsible for converting food into energy, the fact that it receives and sends signals, just like the brain. For all these reasons, we are excited and intrigued by what is only being recently uncovered with advancements in technology, just when we thought human anatomy and biology was pretty much a closed case.