Gut Brain Connection and Blood Type

Our “second” brain, commonly called our gut, is known as the enteric nervous system, and it lines the esophagus, stomach, small intestine and colon. It contains neurons, neurotransmitters and proteins that send messages from the gut to our brain and visa versa. According to Dr. Michael Gershon, author of The Second Brain, “A hundred million neurotransmitters line the length of the gut, approximately the same number that is found in the brain…”. That means that there are more nerve cells in the gut than there are in the entire peripheral nervous system or the spinal chord! Furthermore, nearly every chemical that controls the brain has been found also in the gut, including hormones and neurotransmitters. Therefore, you can see by design that anything affecting the gut can and will affect the brain.

Food directly impacts the gut brain connection. Our gut also contains lymphatic tissue which carries the flow of toxins from the byproduct of digestion to the liver and kidneys. Eating foods that increase one’s toxic burden can cause inflammation not only in the gut but in the brain. Foods to avoid would be: food additives, food preservatives such as nitrates, and sulfates in processed meats, food colorings, and “moldy” food such as:

  • raisins
  • strawberries
  • grapes
  • cantaloupe
  • aged cheeses
  • oats (oat smut)
  • wheat and white flour (wheat smut)
  • and corn (corn smut)

These moldy type foods also contain mycotoxins from the excretion of the mold that is especially neuro-inflammatory and neuro-toxic to sensitive individuals and can heighten any brain symptom. It can cause aggressive behavior, ADD, brain fog, mania, depression, and fatigue.

When the gut develops immune sensitivities to food, the brain can react to not just the food but also to the byproducts of digestion, such as citric acid from oranges and lemons or magnesium and/or sulfur from dark green leafy vegetables, garlic and onions or egg yolks. Immune sensitivities to nutrients that we need such as magnesium and sulfur will impede our ability to detoxify and repair tendons and joints. Increased toxicity can and will eventually affect the brain, aggravating all inflammatory symptoms.

Blood type and red blood cell genotype affects the gut brain connection. A little know correlation is the connection between one’s blood type of A, B, AB or O and diet and how certain foods in each group increase our toxic load and cause more inflammation than it might in another blood type. The science behind genotype research goes beyond blood type into the genetics of the red blood cell and how it interacts with the foods we eat. Dr. D’Adamo’s genotype research in the last two years has revealed that some red blood cell types lack an enzyme that other blood cell types have that would enable them to metabolize a certain food group which then ends up as a toxin whereas with other genotypes that food would not increase their toxic load. Accordingly, certain foods pose a larger toxic and inflammatory stress for one blood/genotype type than another and can even cause the red blood cells to stick together to increase one’s stroke risk.

Immune Matrix reports that in over a dozen years of monitoring the diets of their patients, the gut brain connection of blood type A’s have a tendency to develop the most severe chronic illnesses and their symptoms affect their brain more than other blood types. A sick blood type A, especially a non-secretor A, can be obsessive, emotionally reactive, have severe food and chemical sensitivities and all manner of brain symptoms from difficulty processing information and memory, to inattention, anxiety, feeling edgy, to feeling like everything bothers them. Whatever inflames their gut WILL inflame their brains.

Immune Matrix reports that blood type A’s tend to have more brain and neurological symptoms and have a lower tolerance to being able to handle medications, supplements in pill form and powders. Accordingly, Immune Matrix has a protocol specifically designed to address the gut brain connection of each genotype and to help improve detoxification pathways and nutrient metabolism enabling them to navigate through the necessary evils of taking the proper type and form of drug, tincture or nutrient supplement.

A documented example of how medications that affect the gut impact the brain is the fact that about 95 percent of the body’s serotonin is found in the gut. Antidepressant medications called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) increase serotonin levels by inhibiting its breakdown. However, any medication that causes chemical changes in the mind often provokes gut issues as a side effect. Irritable bowel syndrome, nausea, vomiting, constipation, diarrhea, more depression, anxiety, insomnia, and fluctuations in appetite can arise in part from less serotonin available for use by the gut, the side effect of taking an SSRI in susceptible patients to make more serotonin available for the brain.

Another example of the gut brain connection is insomnia. The gut and the brain both have 90 minute cycles.  Could the brain and gut be influencing each other? Patients with bowel problems, irritable bowel for example, tend to have abnormal REM sleep. Drugs like morphine and heroin block the gut’s opiate receptors and cause constipation. Conditions we attribute as being brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s also exhibit constipation for similar reasons. Our gut even helps us to modulate pain by making benzodiazepines. These are the same chemicals found in anti-anxiety drugs like Valium.

Research and lab tests to determine the degree of gut biochemistry imbalance affecting the brain is in its infancy. Neurotransmitter urine tests show promise to help monitor the effects of drugs and nutritional therapies designed to improve mood and sleep. Realizing that what you eat plays a significant impact on your toxic burden, your immune health and vitality, and your brain function can be the key to unlocking the answer to chronic symptoms. Immune Matrix continues to expand its knowledge of how certain foods affects one genotype over another and how that impacts our ability to detoxify and contributes to inflammatory conditions that cause brain symptoms. Continuing clinical advancements by Immune Matrix into understanding the gut brain connection and how blood type and genotype alters our brain chemistry and derails our immune system shows promise for those patients suffering from autism, Lyme disease, chronic inflammation, chronic fatigue and neuro-degenerative and brain degenerative symptoms.

Please note:
Information on this site is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional. You should not use the information on this site for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication or other treatment.

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Anna Manayan

Anna Manayan