The enteric nervous system is a division of our autonomic nervous system which is the system of nerves that automatically control our organs, glands, and blood vessels. The Enteric Nervous System is a mesh-like system of neurons that governs the GI system.
The ENS is capable of autonomous function of the Sympathetic (fight or flight) and the Parasympathetic function (rest/digest) within the autonomic nervous system. This independent function has earned the ENS the nickname of “the second brain”.
This system of enmeshed nerves that are embedded into the GI system has over 500 million neurons. That is 5x as many neurons as within the spinal cord. This system of nerves that controls our guts is 1/200th the size of our brains.
90% of the neurotransmitter serotonin is found in our guts and 50 % of our bodies dopamine is found in the gut. There is a lot of truth to the saying, “listen to your gut.” Your gut actually gives you a clearer picture of the correct decision to be made when considering two different options. The second brain of the gut literally uses the same neurotransmitters to operate efficiently.
The Vagus nerve is responsible for autonomic function to the gut while sensory nerves control chemical and mechanical response of the gut while the motor nerve controls peristalsis within the gut. ( the mechanical churning).
The ENS produces over 30 neurotransmitters including dopamine, serotonin, acetylcholine and many others. This system of neurotransmitters and communication is critical to overall nerve system function. This is clear evidence that the nerve system operates and controls the GI system.
The other component of a healthy gut is a healthy biome of microbes in our guts. Some experts estimate 100 trillion bacteria alone reside within our guts. More bacteria live within and on us than we have human cells. That’s mind-boggling.
Contact Ask Dr. Lask for more information about achieving a healthy gut through probiotics (Orthobiotic supplement) and gentle chiropractic adjustments to the Thoracic spine to stimulate GI function. http://www.askdrlask.com 314-835-1234
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