Can your gut health influence your personality?

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Microbes in your gut may play a role in certain personality traits, according to a recent exploratory study from Clarkson University.

The authors of the study published in the journal Nutrient, said the purpose of the study was to identify potential correlations between gut microbiota and a person’s long-standing predisposition, known as a trait, to mental energy and physical and tired.

“While we are still learning about the gut-brain connection, based on these exploratory findings, we can see that there may be a connection between gut bacteria and trait-level energy and fatigue,” Ali Boolani, who conducted the research with several colleagues from various universities, told Fox News.

Image of bacteria, gut microbiome
(Stock)

Boolani, who is an associate professor of physical therapy at Clarkson University, and his team of researchers, said in the published report that the results provide evidence that the four traits: mental energy (ME), mental fatigue (MF ), physical energy (PE), and physical fatigue (PF), may have unique but overlapping gut bacteria profiles.

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In one Release About the study, the researchers explained that thousands of different types of bacteria live in the gut and make up what is known as the gut microbiome. Factors such as dietary habits, level of physical activity and health status can determine the number of each type of bacteria, depending on the version. The gut microbiome is generally stable for most of adult life, unless a person is taking antibiotics or there is a gastrointestinal problem, according to the study authors. Likewise, they noted that personality traits are also stable and can take years to change. The researchers explored a connection between the two and according to the report, the authors found a potential correlation.

This 2011 digitally colorized electron microscope image made available by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases shows a cluster of green-colored bacteria on a purple-colored matrix.

This 2011 digitally colorized electron microscope image made available by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases shows a cluster of green-colored bacteria on a purple-colored matrix.
(NIAID via AP)

The authors found that distinct bacteria were associated with certain personality traits. Bacteria that perform metabolic functions are most often correlated with feelings of energy, while bacteria associated with inflammation are most often correlated with feelings of fatigue. A bacterium was associated with three of the four personality traits, but none were noted between the four traits, the authors said in the study.

Boolani told Fox News that the findings shed light on the need to explore the gut microbiota to see if it determines mood and cognitive responses to various nutritional interventions, rather than just focusing on neurotransmitters.

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The study involved 20 physically active adults. Boolani and colleagues noted that larger studies are needed to confirm these exploratory findings.

An image showing a petri dish with bacteria.

An image showing a petri dish with bacteria.
(Shawn Lockhart/CDC via AP)

“These new findings support my previous work in which we report that feelings of energy are associated with metabolic processes, while feelings of fatigue are associated with inflammatory processes.” Boolani also said. “Since we are still learning about the gut microbiome, we don’t know if if we try to change our personality trait, we might see a change in the gut microbiome; or if we try to change our gut microbiome, we might also change our personality trait.

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Boolani and his research team plan to replicate the study with larger numbers of participants, with samples from a much larger number of participants at both Clarkson and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. .

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