Brain-gut connection, is your brain causing you GI problems? – Podcast #65

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Brain-gut Connection – Anxiety and depression have been thought to contribute to gastro conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Experts explain that what’s going on in your gut could be affecting your brain.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani and Evan Brand discuss the brain-gut connection via the HPA, HPT, and HPTHE axis. Find out how important it is to have a good feedback loop of communication. Discover how vital the enteric nervous system is as much as our central nervous system. Listen to this podcast and learn how you can get optimal HCl production and get some info on what chiropractic care can do for you when it comes to excellent brain communication.

brain-gut-connectionEvan shares his experience from previous gut issues that were eventually fixed. Dr. Justin further explains how some brain issues could potentially cause gut issues especially in the realm of trauma, but emphasizes that we need to focus on the gut to get things working again. In this interview, we also find out how we can get relief from constipation to avoid all the toxic reabsorption that's bad for the body.

In this episode, topics include:

3:15   Gut-brain axis

7:29   Causes of system dysfunction

12:05   Intestinal motility speed tweaks

13:08   Laxative herbs

16:15   Chiropractic care







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Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  It’s Dr. J here.  Evan, how’s your magical Friday doing?

Evan Brand:  Oh, it’s very magical.  I just had some bone broth mixed in with some of this specific organic chicken and wild rice soup.  So that’s my breakfast before you ask me.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Nice.  That sounds really good.  I actually just got a VitaMix–super, super stoked about it.  Actually made some awesome ginger tea this morning.  I’ve been doing that a lot.  Ginger is phenomenal especially if you’re having die-off reactions, you know, when you’re doing gut killing programs for infections or even if you’re sick.  Ginger has some amazing properties that it can help basically viruses that fuse to maybe your throat or a particular tissue in the body.  It can help those viruses off.   It’s also anti-inflammatory.  It’s anti-coagulative, meaning it keeps the lymph fluid moving.  It keeps the liver moving and it’s anti-inflammatory.  So it’s just a phenomenal herb and I just blended it up with some lime and added a little bit of honey in there and it’s–it’s pretty phenomenal.

Evan Brand:  So you just took a little chunk of lemon.  You threw that in with water and you squeeze lime juice in there or you threw a lime without the skin or how do you–how do you add each?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Well, the VitaMix is like a blender on steroids, so I just threw in like maybe a chunk of raw organic ginger from Whole Foods.  So maybe about the size of my fingers, threw them in there, added just a little bit of water and I threw–actually threw a whole lime in there, probably wasn’t the best bet, throwing a whole lime–I think you’re–I think you’re better off just squeezing the lime juice in there, because once you get the rind going, it’s a little bit tart.  But just squeezing the juice in there, blending that up and then I mix it in with some hot water on the stove, just enough to fill up a coffee mug and then pour it in, stir it up, add a little bit of honey, and I was good to go.

Evan Brand:  I think you just wanted to test the power of your new VitaMix.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Oh, yeah.

Evan Brand:  So you threw–so you threw the whole lime in there.  Total–total lime domination.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  I know, I know, absolutely.  So it was good.  I enjoyed it and really good thing to use if you’re having a sore throat or you’re starting to come down with a cold or you’re on a gut killing program.  I recommend that to all my patients.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, it’s definitely a lot better than going and getting–I can’t even think of any over-the-counter remedy that’s–that’s crap right now.  Can you name one?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  For your throat?

Evan Brand:  Yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  I think they just have like some Robitussin kinda stuff.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, yeah, yeah.  Yup.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  That’s the only think I can think of.  That ginger is a natural tussin.  All tussin means is–it’s a anti-cough so to speak, so it helps kind of decrease that cough reflex.  But ginger’s great.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, if I were to boost that thing up, I would add like a half teaspoon of schisandra extract and like sneak an adaptogen in to that drink.  I bet it would be even–even better.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  That’s great.  You know, I’m a huge fan anytime you’re sick, the medicinal mushrooms are powerful.  Just like the adaptogenic herbs, they have an effect on the immune system and the adrenals where the mushrooms really have a strong effect on the immune system especially Reishi or Shiitake, a very powerful medicinal mushroom.  And that’s it’s been used for thousands of years.

Evan Brand:  Yup.  I know we got a limited time today so I guess we should dig in.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Let’s dig in.  So we’re gonna talk about the gut-brain axis.  I had a patient the other day ask if we could dig into this and I said, “Let’s do it.”

Evan Brand:  Sure, so where should we start?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  So anytime we talk about like an axis, like the HPA axis or the HPT axis, the HPTHE axis, all these abbreviations are just for different parts of your body and the various feedback loops that go downstream to upstream to communicate.  So like for instance, the big ones like the HPA axis.  What does that mean?  H and P stand for hypothalamic and pituitary–hypothalamus and pituitary, those are parts of your brain.  And then the A stands for adrenal, so it’s just that feedback loop of communication.  And we need this feedback loop so our body can adapt to stress and stress disrupts a lot of these feedback loops.  Now on that note we have what’s known as the brain-gut axis which is the brain talking to the gut and the gut then talking back to the brain.  Now everyone knows or everyone’s probably familiar with the central nervous system–that’s the brain and the spinal cord–the CNS, central nervous system.  Well, we also have a nervous system that has just as many neurons in the central nervous system in the gut.  It’s called the enteric nervous system and this is its own nervous system in the gut.  So we have this kind of cross-off between the brain to the gut, the gut back to the brain.  And it’s–it’s pretty profound.  Now I find a lot of people, they have a lot of dysfunction like let’s say you’re having memory issues, brain fog issues, mood issues–I find a lot of issues today area emanating from the gut and feeding back into the brain via inflammation, via dysbiotic bacteria, via infections, via the infection-like by-product such as lipo–lipopolysaccharide, LPS, or endotoxin, via food allergens getting into your bloodstream, via pesticides and junk in the environment, getting into your gut and into your bloodstream and affecting your brain.  So anytime we see fire in the gut, we see fire in the brain.

Evan Brand:  I absolutely had that when my gut was messed up, which got me into all this health stuff.  Depression was probably my biggest symptom.  It started out as brain fog, just feeling like I was looking at life through an opaque piece of glass and then eventually depression wrecked me and obviously I was working 3rd shifts at that time, too.  People go back and listen to my old episodes and–and complaints there.  But eventually after the gut got fixed, those symptoms went away.  So the connection is huge and I felt it first-hand.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Got it, yeah.  I mean, I see a lot people with gut issues and they don’t really equate their gut issues causing their brain problems.  Now there’s a doctor, Dr. Kharrazian, he’s a–he’s a good guy.  I learned a lot from him, took all of his classes and courses.  Now he’s a big fan because he’s a chiropractic neurologist that a lot of gut issues really emanate from the brain.  Now I’m not quite sure how I feel about that.  Now I do agree that some gut is–or some brain issues could potentially cause gut issues especially in the realm of trauma, you know, car accidents, head trauma, you know, bumping your head and such.  I do believe that type of trauma can affect the gut because the vagus nerve which is–it’s a parasympathetic nerve fiber that kinda makes its way from the brain, it’s the 10th cranial nerve in the back of your brain stem but also makes its way and has an effect on every single part of your body.  And that vagus nerve, again controls the–the rest and relaxation.  Now Dr. Kharrazian is a big fan of like the gargling and the singing to really activate that vagus nerve, but frankly, I think it’s okay.  I think it’s good.  It’s a palliative way to support parasympathetics, but let’s face it, if you have a gut issue and it’s underlying issue is primarily gut-based, you’re not gonna be able to sing your way back to a healthy gut and you’re not gonna even be able to gargle your way back to a healthy gut.  I really think depending on your history, as long as you don’t have this type of trauma that we’re talking about, you’re gonna typically have to be focusing on the gut primarily to get things working again.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, so let’s talk about some of the things that can lead up to this–the dysfunction on this system.  For me, I always go to low HCl levels first.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Low stomach acid, is that what you’re trying to say?

Evan Brand:  Yeah, yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah.

Evan Brand:  Because you’re just not gonna be breaking things down if you’re coming across some organisms in your food that shouldn’t be there, some bacteria or pesky things, if you don’t have enough HCl to kill those guys off and properly digest those foods, then that could create other issues downstream.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, I’ll even go one step higher up.  I think low stomach acid but people don’t typically just have low stomach acid out of the blue.  There’s some type of stress that’s activating their sympathetic nervous system response, right?  Parasympathetic being that vagus nerve stimulation.  The sympathetic essentially is gonna be the branch of your nervous system that’s the fight or flight.  It’s the part of your nervous system that activates the adrenal glands.  That’s the, you know, when your adrenal glands get stimulated by adrenal rush, that little spidey tingly sense you get, that’s your sympathetic nervous system and if that response is activated prolonged, it really shuts down digestion, enzyme production, and hydrochloric acid secretion.

Evan Brand:  Great point, great point.  Yeah, so all those people out there listening to this podcast, driving, texting and eating a burrito at the same time, you are not giving yourself optimal HCl production right now.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Absolutely.  Now some people with gut issues though, this is where it gets a little hairy because once you have a gut issue, so many other things start breaking down because we need minerals for all of our various metabolic processes in the body.  We need protein, right?  Protein becomes a building block for neurotransmitters.  Fatty acids and cholesterol become building block for all of our hormones.  So once we have gut issues, a frog–a frog came back and it’s actually–hold on one second.  I got my ginger tea so that will at least help.  So once we have absorption affecting all of these various nutrients, so many things can happen.  So one of the things we’ll see is we’ll see neurotransmitter dysfunction because neurotransmitters come from protein and once protein is affected, we can start to see neurotransmitter issues.  Now when we start supporting neurotransmitters, a couple of things can happen that can help motility, right?  Peristalsis which is big, because if we fix the neurotransmitters, mood gets better, sweet cravings get better, we can create better willpower so we’re eating better foods, but also we can affect motility and that motility can keep the stool particulate moving throughout the intestinal tract and help it evacuate in a timely manner so we’re not reabsorbing a lot of our toxins from the stool which can then affect our guts and they can affect our brains, right?  Because everything–our brains are basically bathing in this pool of blood and if we make toxic blood from reabsorption of the stool particulate, you can image your brain’s not gonna function too well.

Evan Brand:  It makes sense.  So are you alluding to the fact that constipation could contribute to some of these issues, too?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Absolutely and constipation is gonna be primarily driven by malabsorption, low stomach acid, low enzymes, followed by this dysbiotic/pathogenic infection overgrowth that disrupts peristalsis, or that’s–that’s the scientific terms–the layman term is you got like the toothpaste, right?  And you’re at the very end of the toothpaste, well, you start rolling it up to get that toothpaste out.  Well, that’s kinda what your intestine does with these various wave-like contractions to move that stool out and if we don’t get it out in, you know, a 20- to 24-hour time period, we’re gonna be potentially reabsorbing a lot of those toxic materials.

Evan Brand:  It’s amazing how many people have constipation.  I never realize the scope of the issue until I actually start talking to people about their poop and a lot of people, I mean, they’ll think it’s normal to go poop once every 2 days.  That’s not normal.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Oh, totally not normal.  I had a patient just the other day–I think she was going like, she’s using magnesium just to be able to go, and if she wasn’t–she wasn’t magnesium, it’d be like once every 5 days to a week.

Evan Brand:  Oh.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Man, that’s just like, “Oh, my gosh, like your brain is bathing in that toxic sludge that’s gonna be floating around your bloodstream.”

Evan Brand:  To me that’s–that almost sounds scary, once a week.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  It does.  Super scary.

Evan Brand:  So at that point, definitely magnesium citrate, the Natural Calm, that was my recommendation to the girl I was talking to yesterday, too.  She said, “I’m–I’m pooping, you know, once every 2 or 3 days.”  I’m like, “Whoa!”  Definitely up the magnesium.  And in terms of neurotransmitters stuff, I mean, what would we do to–to tweak that there.  Would you tweak serotonin or what else gonna work on that intestinal motility speed?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, serotonin is a big one for peristalsis.  So 5-HTP is gonna be very, very helpful for helping things move.  More importantly though because like 5-HTP and/or magnesium, a lot of these things are palliative–I mean, they’re better than the drugs.  They’re better than the enemas.  They’re better than, you know, even like the natural herbs like senna or cascara sagrada, right?  We gotta get to the issue and a lot of times it’s just getting enzymes and getting acid levels up makes a huge different because that kinda helps us process things better but many times we actually have to get rid of the dysbiotic bacteria, fungal, or pathogenic imbalances in the gut for that to help but off the bat, yes, magnesium’s a good one, adding an extra soluble fiber can be a big help, and potentially even using some of these laxative herbs if we need to, just so we’re not creating this toxic environment.

Evan Brand:  What are some laxative herbs?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  I mentioned senna, cascara sagrada, those are a couple of ones that I use in naturopathic medicine.  Big fan of magnesium, and again, you can use it to tolerance because your body will start evacuating the stool at higher levels when you hit tolerance, that could be different for each person.  Higher dose vitamin C is a good one.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, as I was gonna say next, is vitamin C.  I’ve–I found out the hard way of–about vitamin C tolerance.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, even ginger.  Ginger tea is phenomenal at helping things move because it’s an anti-coagulant and it keeps things moving and it’s anti-inflammatory and it’s also a biofilm buster, so it helps knock out the biofilms which are like the protective shields that a lot of these critters kinda carry so they can live longer if you will.

Evan Brand:  I wonder if the GT, that ginger–the ginger one.  I wonder if that would have enough actual ginger inside of it to be considered at a therapeutic level.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  That’s a great question.  There’s also some saccharomyces boulardii.  There’s also some other acidifying compounds that may be beneficial, definitely worth trying.

Evan Brand:  Because I know it’s easy to be lazy when it comes to this stuff and a lot of people may be freaked out by going and grabbing like a piece of ginger and throwing it into the blender.  Don’t be scared.  But a lot of people are kinda skeptical I think of doing some of that raw hands on stuff and they’d rather just grab something pre-packaged and pre-handled, so that may be the introductory way to expose yourself to ginger.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, also you can get the ginger in tincture form. That can be really helpful, too.  It’s already in like a tincture, like an Herb Pharm tincture.

Evan Brand:  Uh-hmm.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  And then you’d to take a couple of squirts of that and mix it with some water and just down it that way.  That’s–that’s really good, too.

Evan Brand:  That sounds good.  Okay, what’s next?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Well, if we’re having slow transit time, right?  Because I’m kinda just equating it back to the gut-brain.  So I have my bias that a lot of these issues primarily are gonna emanate from the gut first.  Now if we’re dealing with people that have had TIAs, you know, transient ischemic attacks, strokes, brain trauma, car accident issues, football, sports-related injuries–yeah, it’s very possible that the underlying issue is emanating from the brain and you may have to see a skilled chiropractic neurologist and have specific neurological stimulation on the brain, lasers on the brain that are parts of the brain that are inflamed or maybe there’s a lesion in the brain because of inflammation.  So you wanna kinda look at your history and if you kinda line up with any of these traumas, then you may need to really work on the brain.  But let’s say you have a brain issue, you’re never gonna hurt yourself by working on the gut, too.  In my clinical opinion, 99% of people I’m seeing, they have primary brain issues–I’m sorry, back up–they have primary gut issues that are affecting their brain.

Evan Brand:  Uh-hmm.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  So what we do is we’re fixing the gut, but we also look at the neurotransmitters just to make sure that if there is a brain issue on the neurotransmitter side, we’re at least supporting it.  So if there is something, we’re making sure that’s being addressed, so the brain from a neurotransmitter perspective is working well.

Evan Brand:  Right, man, I wanted to talk about chiropractic for a minute just because everything that you’ve learned and built upon on top of that stuff is awesome, and we don’t talk about that very much.  So I mean, when you adjusted me, there were tons of symptoms that go away.  So maybe you can talk a little bit about how chiropractic care would be a good ancillary thing to get done on top of all this other internal work.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Well, on the chiropractic side, you can look for things known as hemisphericities and all this means is that one side of the brain, whether it’s the cortex, that’s like the–the big part of the–of the your–the brain like right above the ears so to speak–you have a right and the left.  And then you also have the cerebellum which is the brain stem, that bump right in the back of your head as you roll your hands down from your crown, down the back of your head, those little bumps there.  You have the right and left cerebellum.  And if you see one side more overactive or underactive than the other, well, you can do specific adjusting to help bring one side up.  You can do specific exercises, counting, singing, gargling, laser stimulation, adjusting, exercises, movement, so depending on those imbalances, you can have a specific protocol, eye movements, eye exercises to help address that.  And a skilled chiropractic neurologist will be able to put you through a couple of different examinations to figure that out.  Now also doing applied kinesiology is big.  I also check out the whole body on a chiropractic side when I’m seeing patients chiropractically and we’ll address where certain joints aren’t moving properly, because the brain communicates primarily to the rest of the body via movement and the rest of the body communicates through the brain via movement.  So if there’s not movement–there’s not movement, then the brain’s not gonna have that excellent communication, right?

Evan Brand:  That’s a great point.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  So one of the big areas that has a lot of stimulation is the atlas, so if that top part of the cervical spine is out of balance or isn’t moving properly then that provides a lot of input to the brain and it’s kinda like having bad software, right?  If we have a bad software with a bug in it, bad info in creates bad info out.  So if we can reset or reformat that software by providing the right adjustment or the right stimulation to the brain, that can make a huge difference.  But on that–on that standpoint a lot of chiropractors will provide the right adjustment and then their patient will go home and eat a whole bunch of inflammatory food, eat some gluten and still have a gut issue and they’ll think they made a difference, but there’s still a lot of inflammation coming in from other parts of the nervous system because they forget there’s just as many neurons in your gut as there are in your central nervous system.  So they forget the fact that there’s a whole other nervous system underneath the surface that is being–I should say rotting out because it’s being ignored.  So a good functional neurologist is gonna look at the structure, but they’re also gonna look at underneath and look at the gut and look at digestion, and even look at hormones and neurotransmitters, too.

Evan Brand:  Absolutely.  My wife, she was having a lot of headaches, just constant everyday headaches until she got her atlas adjusted and it fixed it for a while.  She still had some other symptoms going on and then as soon as we got her diet cleaned up, which now it’s pristine, all the symptoms are permanently gone.  So you know, if you’re getting these adjustments and you’re going back every week and still getting these adjustments but your ending right back where you started, then it’s time for you dig a little bit deeper into these other things that we’ve talked about.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, I totally agree.  So you gotta have a holistic approach.  So getting back to the gut-brain axis.  The gut has a major effect on the brain.  Always look at the gut being the primary indicator. Why?  Because we have too much sugar consumption.  We have antibiotics in our food, even just the conventional meat and such.  We have lots of pesticides and chemicals in our environment and we have lots of stress.  All of these things really screw up our gut and then it’s kind of sad but as we get more stressed, other things get worse and worse in our gut.  Low stomach acid, low enzyme production, imbalance in gut bacteria, so the problem gets compounded and worse over time.  So if you ignore the problem, chances are it’s gonna get worse each and every year, and I see it in my patient’s history.  The patients that act sooner get better faster.  The patients that wait, they accumulate more infections, more imbalances.  They stress their adrenals out and they have to eventually get that fixed for them to really get better.

Evan Brand:  Yeah.  Well, on top of that, if they’ve waited so long or maybe they’ve gone the conventional route, by this time, some of the people we helped have been suffering 10, 20, 30, even longer years and now there’s 5 drugs that have been added to the picture because these, you know, they’re not gonna get addressed.  These type of things we’re talking about are not gonna get addressed by nutrition and lifestyle and stress management and things like that.  They’re gonna get addressed by drugs typically.  So that’s just gonna throw a whole another spin into the equation that’s gonna most of the time make people worse or cover up symptoms.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Absolutely.  They’ll be on prokinetics or laxative or enemas and such, and that’s not a good way to do it because it doesn’t fix any of the issues and actually creates lots of side effects, too.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, so no Pepto-Bismol.  That’s not gonna help you.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Uh-hmm.  And there’s one deeper thing, too.  People forget about this a lot–is low thyroid function.  One of the common side effects of low thyroid, of hypothyroidism, is gonna be peristalsis and constipation, and I see that a lot in my patients.  We test their thyroid and we see low thyroid and we start supporting their thyroid and magically their constipation’s gone.

Evan Brand:  That makes perfect sense because if the adrenals and thyroid are gonna be tied together and they’re under all this adrenal stress, that thyroid is gonna slow down, too.   So it’s gonna slow everything down, not just your metabolism but your–your poop speed, too.  So–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Oh, absolutely.

Evan Brand:  That’s interesting.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Absolutely.

Evan Brand:  It’s all connected.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  You gotta get the thyroid looked at.  Yeah, absolutely.  And then if you get the thyroid looked at, you always have to get the adrenals looked at because every now and then I see patients get much sicker when they support their thyroid without their adrenals because their adrenals may already be low.  That extra bit of thyroid support they get can actually lower their cortisol even more and create more adrenal faci–fatigue symptoms.  So we always wanna get the adrenals and the thyroid looked at together.  So if we’re supporting the thyroid, you always wanna be supporting the adrenals.  I find more people get into trouble by supporting the thyroid by itself versus supporting the adrenals by itself.  People that support the adrenals by themselves, if they have a borderline thyroid issue, a lot of times that thyroid issue gets better.  If you support the thyroid issue by itself and there’s a low adrenal issue, that adrenal issue can actually be made worse by supporting the thyroid without the adrenals.

Evan Brand:  I had a lady the other day that was just rubbing herself with iodine every day for no reason.  Has never been tested for thyroid issues or anything.  She just takes iodine and just rubs it on her skin every day because she read in some book that it was good for her.  What would say to that person?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Well, I think it depends how or you know, what the motivation is.  If you’re just trying to get iodine in your body just for the sake of getting iodine in your body, you’re better off taking it orally, swallowing it.  But again you wanna find out and make sure you’re not autoimmune.  First, you wanna make sure you actually need it.  Again, a lot of my female patients that have fibrocystic breast disease, where they have, you know, cyst in their breast, will actually rub iodine topically on the breast tissue so we can get the iodine into the breast because iodine has an amazing effect at helping to break up cyst.  Iodine is big at helping to metabolize estradiol into estriol which can really help affect fibrocystic breast and even fibroids in the urinary, too.  So topically it’s really good on the breast tissue if you have fibrocystic breast, maybe not the best thing if you’re trying to get iodine in your body systemically.  So you’d wanna do something to–you wanna support iodine ideally with a really good liquid solution with iodine and iodide.  Iodide primarily goes to the thyroid.  Iodine will go to the breast tissue and the prostate if you’re a guy and such.  So you wanna make sure you’re supporting it right and then you also wanna make sure that if you are giving iodine, make sure you’re not autoimmune and make sure you’re supporting the selenium and the vitamin C and the other minerals, too, because iodine in the body can create a whole bunch of hydrogen peroxide as a metabolite which is inflammatory.  Selenium comes in there, pulls off one of the oxygen molecules, mix it with water so it decreases the inflammation from iodine metabolism.

Evan Brand:  Uh-hmm.  Yeah, that was what I was worried about.  I was thinking, “Man, everything she’s saying sounds like autoimmune and yet she’s been doing all this iodine.”  So it’s a little bit–little scary what people put themselves into, what situations they get themselves into because they–they read and read and read and self-diagnose and self-treat.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Yeah, just wanna make sure you get the thyroid full tested before you do anything like that, get the antibodies looked at, and then get everything else dialed in first before you go into the iodine because you can easily have a–a Wolff–Chaikoff effect or a Jod-Basedow effect where too much iodine can actually cause a hyper or hypo-like symptoms especially if you go too much, so you’re always better off starting low with a couple hundred mics and working up to, you know, the lower milligram level.  But you gotta make sure you’re working with a skilled practitioner and you gotta have some labs ahead of time so you’re not exacerbating a thyroid autoimmunity.

Evan Brand:  Uh-hmm.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  So anything you wanna summarize with Evan regarding the gut-brain axis?

Evan Brand:  Yeah, well, definitely my–I’m biased.  So I’m always gonna say that stress is gonna be key.  So any way that you can reduce stress whether it’s your nutritional stress in terms of getting in inflammatory foods, you’re still eating gluten or you’re still sneaking that bagel or pasta, things like that.  Getting the nutritional stress out of–out of the picture.  Emotional stress, you and I were talking earlier about EFT, Emotional Freedom Technique, and how helpful that is.  I love it.  You use it as well.  So definitely work on the emotional stuff and then just making sure that you actually have a solid connection between the brain and the gut.  So I’ve actually taken some hypothalamus before in supplement form just to turn that system back on because I was getting some testing done like some different reflex point testing like the Bennett's and–and such, and I was not–I was not pulling any numbers.  Like I was just numb to these sensations and so I added some hypothalamus-pituitary extract in in a supplement form, just put a little bit on my tongue and then all of a sudden all these receptor sites were woken up.  So I don’t know what the–the take-away action there is, that may be for another podcast, but definitely a lot of people have some level of dysfunction going on with this system so it’s definitely important to try to get it straightened out.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Absolutely.  Absolutely.  So the common sequelae is really simple.  Stress–emotional, physical, chemical stress that creates a lower stomach acid and enzyme environment, increase in food allergens, increase in dysbiosis because food’s not being broken down, lower immune function, compromised immune function, infections, leaky gut continues to get worse along the way, more immune stress, potential autoimmunity, and then more brain inflammation due to the all the stresses in the gut making their way into the bloodstream.

Evan Brand:  Yeah, I would say how household toxins would be my other like side note to add to all this stuff.  Getting a good HEPA air filter and making sure you’re filtering out as many toxins that you’re gonna be taking in that way.  That’s kind of another hidden source of inflammation that people don’t talk about much as their home health so if you  have good weather, open up the windows, get that fresh in there, get the crap out, whether you just have new paint or new carpet, new upholstery, new furniture–Dr. J got a new couch.  He can fumigate this office now, things like that. So–

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  You got it.  Absolutely.  Awesome, Evan.  Appreciate the call.  Hope everyone got some good take homes from it and we’ll talk next week.

Evan Brand:  Alright, take care.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani:  Bye.

Evan Brand:  Bye.




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