What is gratitude? It is recognising something good and showing appreciation for it.
Gratitude can also be referred to as thankfulness or gratefulness, it is a feeling of appreciation felt by the receiver of kindness, it could be gifts, help, or other types of generosity. Gratitude comes from the Latin word ‘gratus’, meaning “pleasing/thankful”.
When you’re feeling happy and content – which comes from embracing gratitude it can have a positive effect on your health and wellbeing. The benefits of practicing gratitude are seen to improve a number of health concerns like; headaches, congestion, sleep, mental health just to name a few but one of the most important ways gratitude impacts our health is the way it influences our gut microbiome.
This is because our brain and our gut are connected and work in harmony with one another! So the way we think, feel, act can in turn change and influence our microbiome. When we practice gratitude it signals to our brain that everything is well and flowing in harmony, which then signals our gut to thrive and flourish leaving less room for the bad bacteria to creep in!
Daily Gratitude Practices
We can easily practice gratitude each day with the smallest of actions and the flow on effects will follow.
Journal: Why not start a gratitude journal and spend a few small moments each day writing down what you are grateful for + a goal for yourself each day. Practice this even for a short time and see if the environment around you changes, for example saying thank you or even just smiling at a small gesture can have a knock on affect for that person.
Nourish: We can also practice gratitude through our diet by supporting our bodies with wholesome food, which nourishes not just out gut but our mind!
The brain needs the right fuel to keep on top of your game mentally, emotionally and physically.
Trying adding some more of these foods into your diet:
- Avocadoes– high in good fats, a most versatile fruit have with salads, smoothies or snacks
- Blueberries– high in antioxidants add to a smoothie or on breakfast chia pudding
- Broccoli– helps detoxification because of sulforaphane content, lightly stirfried in coconut oil
- Coconut– fresh coconut and coconut oil supports gut, brain, skin health and detoxification
- Turmeric– powerful antioxidant to reduce inflammation, add to curries, salads or enjoy a golden latte
- Walnuts– brain shaped, so naturally good for it, high in fats, vitamins and minerals
- Water– don’t forget the ultimate brain juice. Start drinking early in the day and aim to get through 2 plus litres of quality, filtered water per day.
Practice gratitude for your health each day with Probiotics
Fermented foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha or kefir support healthy digestion, the growth of good bacteria and can protect the brain from inflammation and damage. Include these in your diet everyday and a teaspoon of Probiotic Foods.
QUOTE…. “Most of your brain material is made in your gut. 90% of serotonin, your happy hormone is made right here in your gut!” Don Chisholm
Healthy gut bacteria train your brain (via the gut-brain connection) to choose healthier foods. They help to banish cravings especially for sugar and processed carbs. As you start to reach for healthier choices in your gratitude practices your good bacteria will grow stronger and thrive off the increased fibre from fresh vegetables and fruits, seeds and nuts, pulses. Nerve cells can regenerate with good fats and protein.
Foods that are in their whole, unadulterated state interact in the brain the way nature intended. In contrast, ‘edible food-like substances’ made out of sugar and flour release an unnatural flood of dopamine that hijacks the pleasure centres in the brain, causing cravings. Cravings can be the first thing to disappear when you start taking food based probiotics.
The Gratitude Goddess Smoothie
1 tbs of coconut oil (if you have never used coconut oil before start with a tsp and slowly build up to 2 tbs per day)
1 tbs of raw organic cacao nibs
½ cup of blueberries
1 tbs of chia seeds
1 tsp of cinnamon
Small handful of almonds/cashews
1 small avocado
1 tbs of Green Barley
1 and ½ cups of water
½ tsp Probiotic Foods Blend (for first time users or 1 tsp for regular users!)
Gratitude is all about recognising and appreciating the good in everything around you. It doesn’t have to be something that is a big time commitment but just small steps like being grateful for your health by choosing wholesome options and nourishing your body each day with quality probiotics. These simple moments are all actions of gratitude that you can practice each day.
SMILE because the brain cannot recognise the difference between a false and a real smile.
When you smile, your brain releases tiny molecules called neuropeptides which can help fight off stress. Other neurotransmitters like dopamine, serotonin and endorphins come into play too. The endorphins act as a mild pain reliever and the serotonin an antidepressant.