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Gut-Brain Talk: The Kynurenine Pathway

Hi Friends,  

Did you know that your gut could be controlling your mood? 

This is because of the gut-brain axis.  You may have heard of serotonin, the “happy” brain neurotransmitter.  It influences your mood, focus, and sleep.  What’s amazing is that 90% of our serotonin is made in the lining of our gut!  Our gut microbiome (ecosystem of trillions of bacteria in our gut) strongly influences the production of serotonin. No wonder they call the gut the second brain!  

Serotonin is made from the essential amino acid known as tryptophan.  You may be familiar with tryptophan being present in turkey.  It’s also present in nuts, seeds, oats, milk, and fish.  

When your gut is inflamed, tryptophan gets converted to kynurenine instead of happy-mood serotonin.  Unfortunately, kynurenine is an inflammatory compound that crosses the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and can trigger neuroinflammation.  Research shows increased kynurenine is associated with depression, anxiety, migraine headaches, autism, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease.

To learn more:


Here’s the good news.  By healing the gut, we can also improve our mood, focus and sleep!  Our Probiotic 100 Billion and Probiotic 225 Billion have several strains of both Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, which have been research proven to improve mood.

L-Glutamine powder can help heal gut inflammation and “leaky gut”,
 also known as abnormal intestinal permeability.  IgG Guard is Immunoglobulins to accelerate healing in the gut.

Of course, cleaning up the diet is paramount to gut healing.  By eating foods in their natural forms, and cutting out sugar, processed foods, and vegetable oils, we can see dramatic changes in the gut microbiome. 

To learn more about common causes of gut inflammation, and how you can heal the gut, please check out my YouTube video on Leaky Gut.

Kind regards,

Rajsree Nambudripad, MD