Our Depressed Brain – The Role of Our Immune System and Gut

Gastrointestinal depression is that even a thing?

Change or loss of mucosal tolerance causes an up or down regulation of key immune responses. These changes are related to problems with the gastrointestinal immune system. Proinflammatory chemicals are introduced into our body and result in the long term a chronic inflammatory conditions. This can cause autoimmune diseases, allergy, cancer, and depression.

Some depression types can be traced back to a set of symptoms caused by a hyperactive immune system’s inflammatory responses.


All the bacteria, viruses that cause an immunological stimulation in the gastrointestinal tract. This needs an ongoing requirement for a maintaining the consistency of our internal state in response to the alteration of the function of our biological systems, induced by external or internal stimuli.

Proinflammatory cytokines produced by our body may highly contribute to a risk of developing depression (symptoms).

Signals to the brain are sent via several mechanisms by cytokines from our body’s immune system. This can also cross the brain‐blood barrier via our bloodstream.

The cytokines activate our brain and induce behaviors of anxiety, depression, mood changes.

The Cause of Autoimmune Diseases are Unknown – Part 6

Seasonings and Good Fats

Photo by Joanna Kosinska

After you follow a strict diet and eat the foods we talked about in part 5 for a few months the inflammation in your body should have improved and seasonings can be introduced gradually, one at a time. And by now you should be enjoying the natural taste of vegetables, fresh fruits, and other whole foods. This is also a huge bonus of the elimination diet, to increase the taste bud sensitivity and decrease the amount of not so healthy seasonings like salt.

Let’s talk about Beneficial Fats and Their Role in our Diet

Omega-3 fatty acids are anti-inflammatory for inflammation-based autoimmune diseases.

These fats are found for example in chia, hemp, and flax seeds and dark leafy greens.

Photo by Angelsover, Mimzy, Nayuta

This dark leafy greens should be consumed daily and one to two tablespoons of seeds can be introduced in the later phases of the diet.

Photo by Delphine Hourlay, Bruno Scramgnon, cheifyc

A small handful of walnuts, either as whole nuts or mixed as dressings and sauces can also be used as a source of Omega-3.

Also, DHA/EPA supplements derived from algae, not fish oil that’s probably contaminated with heavy metals like mercury are a good source at the beginning of our elimination diet when seeds and nuts are most problematic for our gut.

Gamma (GLA) and Alpha Linolenic Acid (ALA) black currant seed is anOmega-6 fatty acid from which the body makes a potent, natural anti-inflammatory substance called prostaglandin E-1. This substance complements the Omega-3 and can be very beneficial for our inflammatory autoimmune disease. ALA and GLA can be taken as pills or natural from black currant seed oil.

Gut Stress – Infection or Loss of Ecological Balance

How is it possible that our gut gets into stress?

Our gut can be under stress from infections or a loss of ecological balance for example as a side effect of using antibiotics. Our body will try to restore the balance by decreasing tryptophan. Tryptophan is also a precursor to serotonin a neurotransmitter that makes us “feel good”. Tryptophan is ingested as food by some bacteria in our gut.

In order our body can restore its gut balance it activates the enzyme indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase and degrades serotonin and tryptophan. So no more food for bacteria that uses them. This can potentially cause depression and anxiety in us, degrade our memory – brain fog, disturbances in cognition, appetite, sleep and body temperature disturbances like cold extremities or fevers.

Psychological and emotional stress can also trigger inflammation in our gut and brain. That’s why mind-body exercises for managing stress are fundamental if we want to to get rid of inflammation and heal our gut.
Without this, the healing won’t last or wouldn’t even take place in the first place. If you have a high-stress life or dealing with past/present traumas you should take extra care of your gut.



Who is Controlling Who – The Gut Brain Axis

The puppet master(s)?

The gut-brain axis is the biochemical signaling taking place between the gastrointestinal tract and the nervous system. Most of the times the signaling comes from the intestinal microbiota, which has an important role in healthy brain functions. The gut-brain axis details how the gut and brain communicate back and forth, and how the health of each influences the other.

When the balance of good) and potentially harmful microbes are compromised and inflammation in the gut starts the inflammatory signaling molecules called cytokines are delivered to the brain by immune tissue in the gut.

Most immune responses produce their initial effects at some part of the body at different rates but information regarding immune challenges are almost immediately signaled to the brain like our senses would do it. This results in an immediate inflammatory impact on the brain from the immune reaction in the gut to substances like protein/molecule parts from food or to chemical compounds such as the pesticide glyphosate.

Part 2 in this series will be about Gut Stress

The Cause of Autoimmune Diseases are Unknown – Part 5

Heal your gut with these foods

It’s important to heal our gut as fast as possible and the solution to that is to reduce gut damaging medication and consume foods that are easy on the digestion and promote gut health.

Some of this foods are:

Cabbage & Cabbage juice.

Pseudo Grains like Amaranth, Quinoa, Buckwheat.
Sweet Potato, Carrots, Onion, Garlic, Ginger
Celery Sticks, Cucumber, and juices of them.
All leafy grains like Kale, Lettuce, Rocket, Swish chard and so on.

After your gut starts to heal you can introduce more foods like Basmati rice, Pumpkin, Millet, Cauliflower, Zucchini  Cantaloupe, Okra and so on.

And a lot more foods based on your gut health level and elimination diet progress. Check out it out for more information here.

Also be careful with seasoning your food, keep it to a minimum, as some spices like cayenne can promote inflammatory reactions.

A pinch of salt, really not a spoon full a few crumbles

to your vegetables is fine will help you to make delicious meals with the baseline foods mentioned above. A word of caution high-salt diets can turn on genes that promote autoimmune processes in our body.

What are the next steps after our inflammation has improved? We discuss that in part 6 of our series.


Try out new things to get better, If it does not Work, It is not a Failure

Not trying is a failure

If you tried something out and did not get the results you wanted, it’s definitely not a failure. You learned something new and can now try other things.

For example, you changed something in your autoimmune diet that created flare-ups. Congratulations for having the courage to try something out new. Now you know one more troublemaker and can avoid it for a certain time, till your gut is strong enough.

Or you exercised too hard and now are too inflamed and your immune system is acting up. Not a problem, you learned your current limit and should avoid to exceed it until you get a little healthier.

Your new autoimmune medication is damaging your gut and you are not on the right track for healing yourself. Talk to your doctor and change your medication and start your lifestyle change, so you wont need any medication after a certain time.

Trying new things is absolutely ok, even if they don’t work for you. Not trying anything, not trying to get to the cause of your autoimmune disease and not changing bad habits that caused the disease in the first place are a failure.

Try out new stuff, change your lifestyle and get rid of your autoimmune illness.

The Cause of Autoimmune Diseases are Unknown – Part 4

Here are some of the bad boys that cause inflammation.

While any protein food “parts” can leak into the bloodstream and cause inflammation in the joints, there are some foods you should definitely avoid while beginning your gut repair.

Red meat should be avoided and especially pork meat.

Chicken protein and eggs.

Wheat protein from wheat cereals, pizza, pasta, bread,…

Soy products like tempeh, soy-meat, tofu and so on…

Milk proteins from dairy products like yogurt, ice cream, cheese, chocolate,…

Avoid all fats from animal products (highly saturated) and oils (olive oil, palm oil, etc.) except Omega 3 from plant sources like algae.

Sometimes also nightshade vegetables like potatoes (sweet potato is not a nightshade and causes no inflammation), tomatoes, eggplants, peppers,…

After a few months of gut healing, the nightshade vegetables can be introduced one sort at a time.

And what are foods to begin with for our gut healing? We will discuss that in part 5 of this series.


The Cause of Autoimmune Diseases are Unknown – Part 3

What is most likely causing our leaky gut?

Some of the daily and popular foods like:
Acidic sodas (phosphoric acid), antibacterial herbal teas, alcohol (beer, wine) and coffee kill our much-needed good gut workers in our microbiome.

Combined with Fatty foods, especially that are rich in saturated fats, the good bacterial population is reduced and high-meat diets promote bacteria that has a tolerance to bile in our gut. This promotes DNA damage and cancer growth. Also, Creating an unhealthy gut environment trains our immune system in a way, that it gets confused and attacks our own body.

Another problem is our modern farming practices like spraying everything with pesticides that alter the bacterial balance.

Most of the animal products contain residues of antibiotics fed/injected into the animals and kill also our beneficial gut bacteria.

Asking for and getting prescription for antibiotics, just to be safe, which inevitably unbalances the microbiome is also not the best idea.

Some or all of the above-mentioned foods, drugs, and medications can reduce the numbers of beneficial organisms in the gut lining. Unfriendly and harmful microbes set up housekeeping in the mucus layer and injure the integrity of the intestinal wall. Our gut gets more “leaky” and lets more and more molecules through, that should never enter the bloodstream.

This foreign molecules or protein fragments in our bloodstream can deposit at our joints and cause reactions, ranging from a little uncomfortable inflammation to hot and painful swelling.

Chronic inflammation is tedious for our body and over the years can result in contracture, loss of function, tissue scarring of the joint and organ failures. Our heart, lung, eye, kidney and so on will suffer damage from repeated inflammation over the years and cause a rheumatoid lung, failing rheumatoid heart, bleeding kidneys and so on.

Stay away from standard diets that recommend or lead to eating: daily meat consumption, dairy products, processed foods, concentrated sugars, preservatives, colorings, flavorings and other chemicals because this will lead with a high probability to all kind of health problems including chronic inflammation.

Part 4 of this series will be about some specific culprits for chronic inflamation.


The Cause of Autoimmune Diseases are Unknown – Part 2

What about the Leaky Gut?

The food choices we make can damage our gut directly with their physical or chemical properties if they are for example: acidic, greasy, digestive-intensive like meat or poor in nutrients.

Indirectly the above-mentioned kind of foods imbalance the microbiome, the most important residents in our gut, billions and billions of microorganisms that live in the mucus layer of our intestines. They form one part of our gut functional barrier.

Physicians ignoring the effect of our diet and how that relates to inflammatory rheumatoid diseases like arthritis or ankylosing spondylitis is very short-sighted and leads to symptom management rather than dealing with the cause of the disease.

Through scientific research, it is known that in most people with inflamed, leaky gut conditions, protein fragments from foods and gut organisms enter the bloodstream after most meals.
Our immune system forms antibodies in response to these foreign bodies and components of milk, wheat or egg proteins for example. The antibodies are formed within a very short time (hours) after consuming these foods.

In Part 3 we will get into foods that are the culprits of a leaky gut.

The Cause of Autoimmune Diseases are Unknown – Part 1

And what you eat or supplement will not make any difference at all.

If you hear such a statement from your physician or any other “expert”, turn on your bullshit filter on and also be careful what other recommendations or solutions this person suggests. I bet his knowledge is ancient times and for a long time did not bother to read any research on the matter of autoimmune and nutrition.

What is the reason that physicians hesitate so much to consider the possible connections between autoimmune diseases and what we are eating all day long?

Maybe because in most medical schools they teach that fragments of dietary proteins are too large to leak from the intestine wall into the bloodstream and therefore are not the cause of inflammatory reactions in distant organs such as the joints, eyes even the heart. Unfortunately, the opposite is true.

As a sad result, you are given strong anti-inflammatory drugs to deal with the symptoms of the disease but not one of the potential major causes.

Such a “relief” for us will often cause severe damage to our most crucial organs like the intestine, liver, bowel or the bone marrow in the form of bone marrow depression, bowel wall injury, liver inflammation or intestinal bleeding.

Part 2 will be about the leaky gut.

Thanks for inspiration for this series to Clint Paddison ,Dr. Michael Klapper Dr. John McDougall

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