I say this over and over when it comes to eating and drinking for brain health, dementia risk reduction and to give yourself the best possible chance of a healthy, happy later age: eat food that is as close as possible to the way it came from the ground, tree, bush, waterway or pasture.
Sure, some sweet substances widely touted as being ‘natural’, might originate in nature; but the most commonly consumed artificial sweeteners – those in diet, sugar-free or ‘zero’ sugar soft drinks (sodas) especially are chemical substances that are not normally found in natural liquids.
I have an admission to make here – I don't like artificial sweeteners – to me all of them taste metallic, no matter how ‘natural’ they are touted to be. But many people do like them and many believe them to be completely benign.
This recent research suggests otherwise: these researchers found that far from being benign, they suggest some artificial sweeteners can impair the capacity of the vitally important bacteria in our guts (the microbiome) to interract in the way they should.
A good mix of the right bacteria, interacting in a healthy way in the gut, help nourish the gut wall and facilitate vital communication between the bacteria. Both are essential to the health of the brain, and the body overall. Protected cells in the gut wall help stop substances that are not meant to make it through the wall and into the blood from getting there and communication between bacteria and ultimately with the brain is essential for ongoing brain health.
Learn more in Part 3 (Brainworks) of Brain Body Food.
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