In a recent review published in the journal Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, researchers from Ireland explored the diversity of fermented foods, their sources, and fermentation techniques while examining their capacity to impact the microbiota-gut-brain axis. Additionally, they identified knowledge gaps and challenges in studying the mental health benefits of specific fermented foods and proposed solutions to further understand their therapeutic potential.
Microbes colonizing the gut serve as a vital mediator in the microbiota-gut-brain axis, connecting the body’s external signals and intrinsic functions and communicating continuously with the central nervous system. Various factors, including diet, influence the gut microbiota and impact the intestinal, immunological, and neural components of the microbiota-gut-brain axis. Recent advances highlight the potential of microbiota-targeted dietary interventions, such as probiotics, prebiotics, and fermented foods, to enhance mental health by modulating the gut-brain axis.