The truth about your second brain and how it can restore your gut-healthNov 13, 2022
Did you know that you have a second brain? Your gut actually has its own neural networks that speak directly to your mind. In this blog post, we explain the science behind your stomach brain and why it matters for your gut health and improving digestion.
WHAT IS THE SECOND BRAIN AND HOW DOES IT IMPACT YOUR GUT?
Your second brain is composed of a network of neurons, or nerve cells, that line your gastrointestinal (GI) tract from your esophagus to your rectum. This network is called the enteric nervous system (ENS).
The ENS is made up of two layers of neurons: an inner submucosal layer and an outer myenteric layer. The submucosal layer controls secretions, motility, and blood flow in the GI tract. The myenteric layer controls peristalsis, or muscle contractions that push food through your digestive system.
The ENS has more neurons than the spinal cord, and it can function independently of the brain. In fact, the ENS is sometimes called the “little brain” because it is so similar to the brain in structure and function.
This second brain is connected to the first brain by the vagus nerve, the longest nerve in the body. The vagus nerve starts in the brainstem and extends down to the abdomen. It carries information between the gut and the brain, and vice versa.
WHY YOUR SECOND BRAIN IS ESSENTIAL TO YOUR GUT HEALTH
The second brain is important for gut-health as it helps to break down food, absorb nutrients, and eliminate waste. It also plays a role in immunity and inflammation.
If the second brain is not functioning properly, it can lead to digestive problems, such as constipation, diarrhea, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). It can also contribute to mental health problems, such as anxiety and depression. It’s estimated that 90 percent of the body’s serotonin is made in the digestive tract.
HOW DOES GUT-DIRECTED HYPNOTHERAPY HELP HEAL THE BRAIN-GUT CONNECTION?
Gut-directed hypnotherapy is a type of therapy that uses hypnosis to help treat digestive disorders like IBS. It directly addresses the miscommunication between your brain and gut to restore balance and improve digestion with long-lasting results.
During a gut-directed hypnotherapy session, a hypnotherapist will use relaxation techniques, guided imagery, and positive suggestions to soothe and calm the gastrointestinal tract. It helps improve the response patterns in the body, reduces sensitivity in the gut, and improves symptoms like bloating, abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea, and anxiety.
If you are struggling with your gut, talk to your doctor about whether gut-directed hypnotherapy may be right for you.
Do you have any questions about the second brain? Let us know in the comments!