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Who's the boss? Brain or Gut?

Hey all.

I'm not sure if you're aware, but in addition to coaching, I also facilitate corporate wellness workshops.

Most have been virtual workshops recently, and I run them on a variety of topics such as:

  • Meditation/breathing techniques

  • Ergonomics / Human Factors (both in the office and working from home)

  • Transitioning from working at home to back in the office (or vice versa); and of course

  • Gut health workshops.

I've actually got a bunch of corporate gut health workshops coming up with different organizations over the coming weeks and earlier this week I was Zooming with one of my corporate clients about a potential gut health session and during that discussion, we started talking about the vagus nerve.

The Vagus Nerve runs from the brain through the face and thorax to the abdomen and carries an extensive range of signals from the digestive system and organs to the brain and vice versa. It is the longest and most complex of the cranial nerves.

The vagus nerve is responsible for the regulation of internal organ functions, such as digestion, heart rate, and respiratory rate, as well as vasomotor activity, and certain reflex actions, such as coughing, sneezing, swallowing, and vomiting.

Basically, it's like a superhighway sending information between our brain and gut.

For a very long time, it was believed that the majority of information was being sent from our brain to the gut system and our organs.

But they've discovered that it's actually the other way around, and 90% of the data or information is our gut informing and directing our brain!

It's truly fascinating research - and the reason that the gut is now referred to as the second brain. The research also shows that the gut system is far more complex than the brain. Wow! The more we get to know about the gut and learn about the gut, the more we understand how integral it is to our overall health.

And this was the conversation I was having with my client - the absolute importance of good gut health. Gut health is not just about stopping bloating or digestive issues.

Robust gut health is fundamental for emotional health and to control all of our emotions and for our mental health.

So how we deal with life situations, our clarity, our focus, all of these things are actually dependent upon the health of our gut, which is why I'm so fascinated with it.

What we put in our bodies has a massive impact on how we deal with our lives.

How much energy we have. How much focus we have. Even the state of our emotional well-being.

And you can even experiment with this yourself. Go without certain known gut irritants - dairy, grains, gluten, alcohol. Go without dairy for seven days, go without grains for seven days, or go without alcohol for seven days and this will give you the opportunity to really see the difference in how you react emotionally, to experience an improvement in your clarity, mindfulness, energy levels and motivation. How you feel when you get out of bed, how much better you sleep.

All of these things are so dependent on the health of our gut.

Maybe this is a topic that you are interested in having in your workplace?

When we have a healthy gut, it's able to send the right signals to our brain about which chemicals to release, which hormones. Are we feeling stressed? Is that cortisol? Do we need something to relax us? Is it melatonin before we go to bed? All of these things, our brain can understand much clearer when it has a really robust healthy gut.

And if you want to know what that looks like, head to my website and download my six key principles of gut health.

Anyway, just wanted to share that with you. It's so awesome having these conversations with people, and I’m always super excited about going into workplaces and talking about anything to do with gut health!

Every small change WILL become a

big difference in your life.

With so much love,​

Katie Jane

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