That that’s ridiculous. But in fact, with each passing year and with more and more research we’re beginning to realize that we have two brains, and years ago there was a quite a popular book called the second brain which detailed the fact that there are more neurons.
The cell of the nervous system lining your gut. Then there are in the entire spinal cord, which connects the brain to all the rest of you. So the phrase was coined the second brain, but in fact I’m going to make an argument in the upcoming book. The longevity paradox, then, in fact, your brain up in your head should properly be called your second brain and that your first brain should be properly called your gut.
Now that’s a pretty bold statement, but with the previous lecture we talked about the fact that around 90 % of the cells that make you you are living in your gut and that 99 % of all the genetic material in you is contained in your gut. In your skin, not human cells, and that most likely we have uploaded information processing to our gut for most of the functions that we need to do now when I was in medical school and even up until a few years ago, we knew that we thought that A lot of the hormones that affect our mood among others serotonin and affect our sleep of melatonin.
Initially we thought they were made in the brain, but then subsequent research showed that they we thought that they were made in the neurons in the gut and then sent to the brain. Well now it’s clear that most of the hormones within us are actually made in the gut themselves by bacteria, and if we have the time we’ll talk about one of the amazing effects that roundup glyphosate has had on poisoning our first brain, and I think that has Huge implications on the rates of anxiety and depression that we currently have in in our country and other Western countries, okay.
So the basic concept of how the brain talked to the gut was that there was a very large nerve called the vagus nerve that ran from the the brain down to the heart down to lungs, down the liver and then down to the gut. The intestines and the brain via the vagus nerve would basically tell the gut what to do. It would control the motion of these smooth muscles that don’t otherwise take orders via nerves.
So it’s basically the old idea of cable wiring, your home or even electrical wires or telephone wires, there’s literally a direct electrical signal that goes now. This is actually a fairly fast signal, as anybody who hits a hot plate or a hot fire, you get an instant burning sensation that goes to your spinal cord, actually never gets to your brain and you immediately pull your hand away. So that goes by a cable.
What we were taught is that this is this was primarily a one-way street brain told the gut. What to do now, as I mentioned before, women are much smarter than this, and they long known that the gut tells the brain what to do with a gut sense. And of course, you were right for every one wire going down from the brain. There’s actually nine wires going up from the gut to the brain, and this was one of the first indications that perhaps we had it all wrong as to who was in charge.
And so this is one of the first indications that probably the first, our first brain. Our real brain is down below, and this is an important but second brain now, there’s this cable system or hardwired and whenever I’m doing a podcast or a radio show they always want me to be on a ground or ground link. It cellphones are fairly unreliable, but we have a cellphone system. So the second way that we communicate information is via hormones and hormones, don’t travel via wires.
They travel via, if you will blood vessels or limps or there’s even a suggestion that they travel along meridians of electrical charges. But let’s just say that so the second message is Tech’s missing and they serve and and emails. So this is a believe it or not slower process than the hardwire and it’s more subject to misinterpretation, because you have to have a tower or a cell phone. That is capable of getting a good signal.
And if you remember anything, we talked about how lectins may disrupt signaling is that lectins, among other things, will bind on to a cell’s receptor for a hormone and just stay there and block a hormone such as insulin just giving an example from actually getting the information That it needs to get to a cell, and so both of these systems are very important. We used to think that most of the hormones that we make are made in the gut primarily some in the brain, and they were made probably by specialised hormone, using cells.
But with each passing year as we’re beginning to understand how elaborate the gut population is. The more we’re realizing that it’s actually the bugs in our gut that are responsible for making many of the hormones that communicate to our brain so, rather than a kind of top-down information system of the brain being in control of us. It’s actually at least equal between the gut and the brain, and I think, in terms of our short-term and long-term health, that both the first brain down in the gut is probably the big winner in long term.
I’ll give you an example. I recently was visited by a very famous meditator from Japan, a woman who is actually Deepak Chopra’s a representative in Japan, and she actually translates all his books and she has suffered from severe juvenile rheumatoid arthritis and autoimmune condition. And she it’s so bad that she was on to immunosuppressants. She’d already had two knee replacements for her severe arthritis and she had such incredible pain that she really moved around with the help of a wheelchair and a walker, and she firmly believed that she could meditate her way.
Out of this condition – and I think that’s very admirable – but clearly it wasn’t working – she also followed a ru Vedic diet with large amounts of brown, rice and legumes as her principal diet, and she took all the usual suspects. She took lots of anti-inflammatories like tumeric and to no avail, and apparently she was in Vancouver Canada last December, when an acquaintance handed her the plant paradox and she took it home and read it, and I met her in April of this year when she flew to Meet me beautiful young woman, she walked into my office.
She was on no medications, she was pain free and what had happened well as much as her second brain tried to overpower what was happening down in her gut. This was actually the problem and don’t get me wrong meditation and actually works extremely well for a lot of things, but meditation has yet to break into this first brains barrier and so when, when this brain is out of whack, the consequences are severe across her and She’s just one example: let me give you a better example.
We talked there was a question on the last time about good, bugs and bad bugs. So we know that there’s there’s about 10,000 different species of bacteria, so far identified in our gut and there’s probably well over a million different viruses that live in our gut and a nice smattering of worms and fungi and we’re just beginning to figure out what all These guys do we can classify them generally as good guys and bad guys, and you know that I call the good guys gut buddies and the bad guys gang members and the gang members have different food requirements of the good guys and, what’s so fascinating about the Gang members – and this has been worked out very well in animal models and there’s a couple human models that we can talk about.
So the gang members, love, sugars, simple sugars and they love saturated fats, love them. The good guys can’t live on this, and what we now know is that the gang members send text messages up to your brain to your hunger, centers and the text, messages basically say: you’re hungry, we want more to eat and we actually want more of the things We eat and we want more sugar and we want more saturated fats and those of you have seen Little Shop of Horrors, the movie or the play.
The movie had Rick Moranis in it and an all-star cast. But the blood sucking plant that poor Rick Moranis had to take care of, wanted human blood and her name was Audrey and Audrey constantly got bigger and bigger and needed more and more blood, and she constantly said feed me. Seymour feed me and poor Seymour had to go out and get her what she wanted. So we now know that the bugs in your gut, actually tell you to feed them now.
The converse is true: we know that the good bugs actually want these complex, sugars resistant starches in Ulan, which is a complex sugar, and they actually, if you give them what they want over a few weeks time, they will actually kind of drive out the gang members And they’ll start sending messages to your brain to feed them what they want, and I have so many men who are meat and potatoes guys that would never think of even having a salad within two or three weeks.
Maybe a month they’ll they’ll come in and see me so doc. This is the weirdest thing I crave salads. I can’t go a date without having a salad. That’s really weird, really weird! Well, it is really weird to think that this brain has more control over what you’re actually seeking you’re, actually seeking foods for whoever is control of this brain, and this brain in turn controls this brain and there’s been some beautiful experiments with germ-free mice, where they’ve taken Germ-Free mice, who don’t have any bugs in their gut and they give them feces from fat rats.
You know the nice thing about working with rats and mice as they love to eat each other’s feces. I have a dog, we won’t go into them and they just love it. So you don’t have to give them enemas, fecal enemas, you just give them the other rat species, so they take the skinny mice who are, and you give them the feces from obese mice. And lo and behold, the skinny mice will become obese, and this is actually in the Lance that a few years ago there was a case report of a woman marathon runner, who I mentioned in the plant paradox who was skinny.
She developed the severe intestinal infection called C, difficile or C diff, which is the ultimate gang member and she got it by getting a lot of antibiotics and it killed off all her good bugs and the gang member took over. So one of the ways we treat that now is a fecal transplant and a fecal transplant is exactly what it sounds like we take feces from healthy volunteers. I was actually one in medical school back in the dark ages at Georgia, where we actually use fecal transplants to cure this problem and once a week they would take around a honey bucket.
We called it and medical students would take a crap in it and then we’d put it in a Waring blender or a Vitamix and modernize it, and then we put it in a bag and shoot it up. One of our patients rear ends. So that’s a fecal transplant, so it’s now actually recognized therapy. So this woman in England had a fecal transplant. We like to try to get a close relative, because it turns out that people who live together share their same microbiome so, and it turns out one of the theories of why fat families are fat is that you all share the same obese, microbiome and skinny.
Families are skinny because you share skinny microbiome and it’s not willpower as it’s you’ve, you’re being controlled. So this woman marathon runner gets fecal transplant. It’s cured of C difficile from a nice. Now her niece was about thirty pounds overweight within a year. The marathon runner, despite returning to marathon running gained 30 pounds, ate exactly the same foods that she did before, because she’s a healthy runner well how’d.
She do all that. Well, it turns out there’s another really interesting twist to the son, and we talk about a lot in the plant paradox. The obese mice are obese, not only because they have bugs that make them seek out other food, but the bad bugs are actually very efficient at extracting food from the things you swallow and, sadly, they’re actually very efficient at passing it on to you. In other words, they’re the gateway, and so even though this marathon runner was eating pretty much the same thing and believe it or not were not.
The skinny mice were being fed the same rat chow that they were getting before they were given the obese mice bacteria. They all gained weight because these bugs were very efficient extracting calories, but then passing it into things that we could have soared now. What’s really interesting is the good guys they actually, if you will, or rather greedy and don’t want to share, and so they take the foods that we give them.
Particularly inulin and Ola go saccharides and they do two things with it. They make more bugs more kids and they make a particular kind of fad that are called short chain fatty acids that are called and the most important one is sorry butyrate now butyrate gets its name from butter or butter gets its name from butyrate. There’s a little bit of butyrate in butter. Now, don’t turn off the set and go running for the kitchen and get some hot buttered popcorn, there’s very little butyrate in butter.
But there’s some there and one of my colleagues has become famous for bulletproof coffee, which has butter in it, and that’s why it’s in there anyhow butyrate it turns out, is the primary fuel for neurons and, more importantly, it’s the primary fuel for the mitochondria. In all of our cells, but in particular in neuro and you’ll, see that the more butyrate producing bugs you have the better, your health and the better, your brain and the better your energy levels, because of what the mitochondria are getting okay.
So these guys take everything you eat, make some butyrate in exchange, oh by the way butyrate. If you listen to the last lecture is essential for the cells that line our gut has their main fuel supply and the more butyrate they get the plumper and healthier and happier they are and the better off you are long-term, the bugs the additional bugs come out. Your rear end, and then you have Terry walls looking down at that giant, coiled snake in her toilet, so they took most of the food you ate and made more of them.
So it’s a win-win. They give you, in exchange this incredible, clean burning fuel source that helps plump up. Your gut makes your brain happy, make sure mitochondria work and they take most of everything and make more bugs and you poop them out, and you stay thin and again. That’s why you could have someone like me, who you know lost 70 pounds doing this or Kelly Clarkson who lost 37 and a half pounds without exercising and people say, that’s a miracle how’d you do that.
Well, she got rid of her gang members by starving them to death. The good guys moved in they ate most of what she swallowed and in return they gave her what she needed to go on, and so what we see with most people is that the weight loss is basically a side effect of getting your gut back into order And it’s a side effect you don’t have to. This is not about deprivation. This is not about. Oh, you know, I’ve got to have willpower.
Will power comes from here? The willpower you want actually comes from here when you’ve got text messages from your good bugs saying you know feed me the stuff I want and the bad bugs are no longer giving you information to seek out the stuff that they want. Okay, now as most of it, so let me actually so good took good time to talk about glyphosate or roundup. Roundup is now ubiquitous in all Americans.
All North Americans, roundup, used to be most people have heard of roundup, is what we spray on our weeds in the garden. The yard, but roundup was originally developed for GMO. Soybeans and roundup is an herbicide. It kills plants, and it does so by blocking a hilarious pathway, called the Shikha mate pathway and it allows plant cells to divide and reproduce it. Humans do not use the Shikha mate pathway, and so, when Monsanto invented roundup, they assured us that roundup was perfectly safe, because we don’t have the sugar make pathway to make cells.
What they didn’t tell us is that bacteria use the sugar made pathway to reproduce, and so roundup initially was sprayed on soybeans subsequently was sprayed on corn canola and sugar beets. Now roundup is sprayed on almost all conventional grain crops as a harvesting agent, and I won’t bore you with details, but it’s much easier to harvest corn or soybeans or wheat or rice or canola. If the plants already dead makes it far easier to separate the seed from the plant, so now roundup is sprayed on conventional crops so that these very expensive harvesters can be at a particular field on a particular day when the crop is dead now, so this is Then so now roundup is on all of these products, its then fed to our animals as fee.
Now nobody goes around with each individual kernel wipes off the roundup. It goes into the animals. It then becomes part of the meat, whether it’s a chicken, whether it’s pork, whether it’s beef, it’s now part of the beef, then it also goes into our feet. It goes into all of our cereal products, all of our bread products, all of our soybean products. It goes into almost everything we goes into all of our corn products, and so we are, it goes into our wine.
Almost all California, wines have glyphosate, including a few of our organic wines, because the fields next to the organic fields were sprayed with glyphosate. In fact, I was talking to Hawaiian maker in Santa Barbara County a couple months ago and we were looking at their biodynamic and organic and was look. We were looking at one map of his field and I said well now how about this one? He said. No, we can’t certify it as Ganic and biodynamic, even though we treat it that way, and I said well, why not? He said one could see this parcel in here at this bar, so they they spray.
You know with with Roundup, and so we know the wind drifts it and we won’t sort of point certified. So what happens now is roundup in almost everything we eat number one kills our microbiome period. Now we now know from some new research from MIT that roundup, in and of itself breaks tight junctions, which we learned about on the last lecture or what separates the outside world in our gut from us, so roundup in itself produces leaky gut.
But what’s worse, is these gut bacteria are essential to take the building blocks of serotonin and melatonin the serotonin, the feel-good hormone melatonin, the chill-out hormone and take those essential building blocks away, and so the gut bugs are gone. They no longer have the building blocks, so they can’t make serotonin and they can’t make melatonin. Now there’s a third compound that some people have heard of called GABA now, gaba, there’s two hormones, the excitatory hormone, which is dopamine.
Anybody who is addicted to a article game is looking for a dopamine charge. Any gambler is looking for a dopamine hit, gaba is the calm down or mo it tells things. The nurse chill out. Gaba we now know, is also made primarily by gut bugs. So is it any wonder that we’ve got an entire multiple generations least two generations of anxiety, depression on edge and and nothing really and nobody can sleep and it’s all because we’ve we were systematically destroy.
This frame is okay so far, but then the next problem happens. Okay, so neurons make connections with other neurons, their social network to exchange information, and they send out all these dendritic processes. I got to stand over here doing it so there’s neurons are so important that they have their own handlers, their own bodyguards and they’re called glial cells or microglial cells and they’re part of the immune system.
They’re, their white blood cells, so they’re specialized, might think of it as the secret service. These guys are so important that they they kind of care from the neuron and they protect them. Okay, so that’s great now, if our gut is leaky or if lectins and LPS’s are getting. If you remember, we’ve got a bunch of neurons down here and we also have our border patrol where most of our immune system is, and the Border Patrol’s job is to alert.
You me our rest of our immune system about a pending attack. So when lectins and LPS’s and bacteria get through our gut wall, helped by roundup text, messages which are called inflammatory, cytokines hormones are sent up to the brain and they say: oh, my gosh, you know we’re down here in the hinterlands. The walls been breached. The hordes are coming protect the neurons at all costs, so we now have some very elegant pictures, particularly from Harvard MIT instead and UCSF, where these defenders of neurons turn into pac-man and they actually eat these dendrites and prune them back, and you can think of it.
As pulling back the troops from the front lines, I like to think of it as pulling up the drawbridge over a moat as the you know, the barbarians are storming the castle, and so they can actually finally get the neuron isolated and then they get so good That they encircle the neuron to protect it and the neuron, just like you, pulled up the drawbridge on the castle. If the Horde surrounds the castle waits them out, the inhabitants will starve because they don’t have anything to eat and what we’re seeing now in dementia and Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, is these clusters of dead, neurons surrounded by their bodyguards? Now in Parkinson’s, it has a name.
It’s called a Lewy body and this is a characteristic finding of Parkinson’s disease. You know these Lewy bodies occur in a part of the brain. I love this word, the substantial nigra, it’s just a great word and that’s the motor control area of the brain and that’s where all the dopamine cells in the brain are and so the substantial nigra. We see all these Lewy bodies and, oh by the way. Besides text messages, we know that lectins climb the vagus nerve up to the brain and attack the head in head for the substantia nigra.
This has been proven in animal studies, but it’s also been proven in humans, where a number of humans used to have an ulcer operation where we cut their vagus nerve to cure their alter, and it worked pretty well actually. But these people have been followed for years and years and years and people who have had their vagus nerve have about a forty to fifty percent less chance of having Parkinson’s than people who don’t have their vagus nerve, interesting, okay, so, finally, tying it all back together.
So Lewy bodies are the hallmark of Parkinson’s, dead, neurons, surrounded by goji, berries, goji, berries, glial cells, Kouji berries, you evil got that in so researchers neurologists were wondering why Parkinson’s patients had bad constipation, they do and they said well. It must be because the vagus nerve doesn’t tell the gut to move right well, they did some animal experience and said you know we should look at the neurons in the gut because there’s lots of neurons and they got in there and control the movement.
So they started doing biopsies in animals with a model of Parkinson’s and lo and bold down here in the gut, were the dead, neurons, surrounded by glial cells, Lewy bodies, they’re down here in the gut, what the heck are they doing down there they’re supposed to be Up there, so then they took early Parkinson’s patients and do what are now called trance. Colonic biopsies, where you take a colonoscope and lots of people have had a biopsy of a polyp, but they go all the way through the wall of the Cole and bite off.
Some tissue just beyond and lo and behold in human guts of early, Parkinson’s, there’s the Lewy bodies. So what we now know is that Parkinson’s begins in your first brain in your gut and then that information is communicated to your second brain, that the war is on and protect the troops up here. So the more we learn about the first brain, the more and this important brain gets relegated. So, lastly, Alzheimer’s everybody knows about amyloid plaque.
It turns out that amyloid plaque doesn’t start in the brain. Guess where it comes from. Amoy comes from the gut and it goes to the brain. So the reason we’re having this epidemic of dementia of anxiety and depression and sleeplessness, it’s all, because our first brain has been destroyed and under assault, and our second brain is suffering for it. Questions two reasons: almost all the dinosaurs on the market.
You have an artificial sweetener that causes gut dysbiosis. It actually makes bad bugs flourish and good bugs go away. Perhaps equally as important is you have no sugar receptors on your tongue? You have sweet receptors and they’re. There, two-thirds of your tongue are sweet receptors, they’re there to tell your brain that you just hit a fruit tree and that it’s summer and the brain ought to be ready for a bunch of sugar because you just ate it.
So when you taste something that doesn’t have any sugar, the brain says: ok, I’m waiting for the sugar. It should be here any second. Now, hmm it didn’t arrive. You got cheated, go back and get some more because I know the next time. You’ll get it right. So it makes you want more sugar or another diet drink. That’s why I was addicted to diet coke. I was drinking eight diet cokes a day. In fact, there’s pictures of me throughout every Hospital of ever been in making rounds with a diet, coke, and I mean it was my signature and actually I was addicted to it by the professor who trained me.
He was a tab addict, but so your your brain never gets the message. I mean you keep saying what Sam and go get some more go, get some more and that’s what addicts you okay! Well! Thank you all very much appreciate it all right. Thanks for reading, don’t forget to visit my website linked in the description box below for more of my best tips. If you haven’t already click the circular blog icon to subscribe and make sure you never miss another article, because I’m dr.
Gundry and I’m always looking out for you,