Over the last few years, the intestine is considered to be an organ of primary importance.
The first question that comes spontaneously by reading the title of the best seller is: the intestines to do with anxiety? There are some influences, connections between this second brain, and all those manifestations that until recently medicine and common sense bound exclusively to the first brain, what sometimes makes us go crazy, what is more properly called in medical language brain?
The brain is, in fact, only a portion of the brain, which is constituted by that part of the central nervous system (SNC) which is contained in the cranial box. The medical science has therefore immediately made a conventional division between brain and spinal cord, which represents the somatic-caudal part of the CNS, the one that branches in the body towards the ends. This division, which in reality does not exist, has meant that every time it was spoken of mind, psychology, thought, behavior, and any disturbance, it was only about the brain, the brain. Recently, medicine has dissipated this myth, questioning many of its certainties and fortunately for those who suffer, expanding the opportunities for healing and healing thanks to the enlargement of understanding disorders such as anxiety and panic.
Do not worry: I will not bother you with a medical treatise, but this introduction is necessary to emphasize the role of conventions in our vision of reality, conscience in general and the development of sciences in particular. Only recently, in fact, some disciplines have been sprouted that have the task of combining the knowledge emerged in hundreds of years of conservatism and intellectual sectarianism. These disciplines, such as PNEI (psycho-neuroendocrine immunology), are considered as connecting disciplines, bridge sciences, rather than disciplines of specialization.
The medicine then claims, after a long negation, that even the intestines and therefore all nutrition and digestive activity are involved in the formation and maintenance of anxiety and panic. Can we hope for new horizons for care?
If there was no need to divide the SNC into two parts, probably would not have achieved any success with a book highlighting the importance of an organ often disrupted, especially in its implications for the problems so far considered monopoly of the psychic world, mental.
What emerges from his book, but also from many other recent researches and the work of many scientists, is that the well-being of people is closely related to the health of the intestine. The intestinal mucosa is equipped with an immune system able to defend the organism from harmful agents and alert it to any dangers, in order to activate it properly. Not only that, the intestine is the first organ to react to external stimuli like pain or excitement. Have you ever heard the butterflies in the stomach, abducted by great love? What science says is that first came the butterflies and consequently your brain (or your heart) has decided to make you fall in love and not the other way around. It seems all very little romantic, I know.
What is anxiety about? Anxiety and panic often accompany gastrointestinal disorders such as constipation, diarrhea, vomiting, dyspepsia … do you know anything? Anyone who has experienced an intense anxiety state will notice the effects on the stomach, digestion, intestines, and activity.
There are two important considerations to make …
- If the “butterflies in the stomach” first arrive and then falling in love, can the bowel and the anxiety first arrive?
- What are the implications of a systemic, holistic consideration of health and well-being in this case? What if we can go beyond conventional divisions (such as the anatomical one that separates the brain from the rest of the body) and we conceive of every manifestation of the state of health as the synergistic product of several factors, such as the interaction of multiple variables, where all the organs are connected, where nothing can be excluded from the analysis?
The first question is answered by Gershon’s book, but also by Francesco Bottaccioli, the first president of the Italian Society of Psychoneuroendocrine Immunology and the results of many researches. Bacterial flora, also called microbiota, is made up of microorganisms that work together to maintain balance and ensure the proper functioning of the organism. They are mostly bacteria (it would be more correct to talk about bacterial fauna) and are not only present in the intestine but throughout the digestive tract and in general throughout the human body. A state of imbalance and a constant stress on their functioning causes a series of alterations that go far beyond the only gastrointestinal manifestation. Think of Candida, a fungus that can lead to candidiasis, a genital infection with symptoms that can be found in the esophagus and tongue.