Just came across a study of mice suggesting doses of this strain of bacteria reduce anxiety, operating through the vagus nerve. The researcher said the effect was comparable to valium, but was careful to point out the effect in humans is unknown.
Wikipedia has the reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lactobacillus_rhamnosus#Anxiety
Emily Deans discussed it last year: http://evolutionarypsychiatry.blogspot.co.uk/2012/01/more-evidence-for-gut-brain-connection.html
And it does come in supplement form.
Anyone have experience of this?
asked bybegob (175)
Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!
on August 22, 2013
at 11:36 PM
No scientific evidence, but anecdotally:
1) I had chronic moderate anxiety with periods of severe anxiety, depression, mood swings, and severe panic attacks from age 14 through age 23-24. I ate crap and was on antibiotics at least 3 times a year for sinus infections. I didn't eat fermented food at all. Even if I ate yogurt, it was the super sweetened Yoplait Whips crap. I also drank heavily. I was on a combination of anti-anxiety/anti-depressants for about 5 years.
2) I was able to reduce my meds around age 24. This was about 1.5 years after getting out of college and getting married. I was making sourdough on a weekly basis and eating homemade yogurt every morning. I also had started taking a probiotic, which was crap (not refrigerated), but still. My intakes of fresh veggies and fruits had sky-rocketed, and I was following "clean eating"- whole grains, natural sugars, dairy + paleo. After a year, I stopped the meds completely but continued to have mild panic attacks occasionally.
3) I started fermenting my own saurkraut about 1.5 years ago. I make kombucha, eat paleo with full-fat dairy, make an effort to eat raw leafy greens and alliums every day, ferment all sorts of crazy relishes and condiments, etc., and I have never felt more mentally healthy. Haven't had a panic attack in about 1.5 years.
If gut health can affect inflammation in your knees, sinus congestion, mental cloudiness and fatigue... why wouldn't it affect anxiety too?? I believe it to an extent. That being said, diet is no way to treat a serious mental illness.