Imagine a bi-directional highway between your gut and your brain. Now, all the cars and trucks on the highway are called neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters are the biologic messengers of the gut and the brain. There is serotonin, which is the feel good neurotransmitter, and dopamine, which is your motivator neurotransmitter, and GABA, which is your calming neurotransmitter. These are just a few of the neurotransmitters, with more about them HERE.
Neurotransmitters aren’t just made in the brain, they are mostly manufactured in the gut. And how do we make them? Through the protein that we eat! That’s why we need to eat well-balanced meals so that we can get the protein we need to help keep our nervous system in balance.
Proteins break down into amino acids in the gut. And these amino acids are the precursors to neurotransmitters. But that’s not all we need to make neurotransmitters.
We also need vitamins and minerals, otherwise our neurotransmitters run out of gas. The most common vitamins and minerals we need to help make neurotransmitters include: Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, Magnesium, and zinc.
So to sum up, we need healthy protein at every meal, as well as whole foods, such as legumes, squash, greens, cruciferous vegetables and fruits, to provide the necessary vitamins and minerals to support the nervous system.