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Eat This Breakfast for Mental Well-Being

Eat This Breakfast for Mental Well-Being

Eating a good breakfast doesn't just get your body ready to face the day. It may boost your mental well-being, too. Especially if you choose yogurt.

Newly published research suggests that when you feed your gut fermented foods that contain Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium—two strains of healthy bacteria known as probiotics, which are found in some yogurts—your brain ends up with an extra dose of happy-making neurochemicals, too.

From belly to brain
So just how does healthy flora in your belly have an impact all the way up in your noggin? Apparently good bacteria can actually produce neurochemicals in the gut—we're talking feel-good chemicals like serotonin and dopamine. And these chemicals, in turn, get taken up into the bloodstream and circulated throughout the body, including the brain. The likely end result: improved mental well-being.

More reasons to love probiotics
Probiotics aren't just a boon to mental health. They've got full-body benefits, too, including these:

  • Infection fighter: Live probiotics in fermented foods can boost immunity and may even help prevent urinary tract infections.
  • Heart protector: Probiotics found in yogurt products containing live bacteria have been shown to exert a heart-protective effect on blood lipoproteins linked to cardiovascular disease.
  • Diarrhea remedy: Fermented milk products that contain acidophilus (check the labels on kefir and yogurt-based drinks) can help prevent diarrhea in children taking antibiotics.

Medically reviewed in November 2018.

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