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Polygence Scholar2022
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Anya Lal

Milpitas High SchoolClass of 2023Milpitas, CA



  • "You are what you eat: an analysis on the gut and its connection to mental health and neurological disorders" with mentor Deobrat (Nov. 6, 2022)

Project Portfolio

You are what you eat: an analysis on the gut and its connection to mental health and neurological disorders

Started Feb. 27, 2022

Abstract or project description

The gut microbiome consists of healthy and harmful bacteria and microorganisms that live in the gut. It plays a major role in regulating digestion and the immune system by producing metabolites from the food we eat. The gut and the brain communicate with each other bi-directionally, which is classified as the gut-brain axis. The brain regulates gut function, but it has been understudied how gut health can also influence brain functions. The gut microbiome connects to the brain through the brain-gut axis, which is composed of two pathways transmitting information to the brain. The brain then sends back information to the gut. Through various studies, it has been found that changes in the gut or the brain can affect the other by changing neurotransmitter regulation and production and weakening the gut barrier. Changes in the gut can lead to neurological disorders and stress while changes in the brain can lead to a leaky gut and irritable bowel syndrome, to name a few. Through observations of different studies conducted, this review aims to elaborate on the connection between the gut and the brain. We aim to figure out how our diet can affect our mental health and whether the food we eat changes the way we think. An altered diet may be a way to manage certain neurological disorders and produce the right chemicals to keep the gut and the brain happy and healthy.