Problems with your gut?
This three minute read from the Blue Light Diet Declassified blog series will help you.
Well I bet some of those pills, potions and probiotics you're taking will definitely help you, I like the protocol laid out by Dr Grace Liu at The Gut Institute myself.
I also bet the vast majority of you reading this definitely aren't getting any morning sunlight in your eyes or on your gut which means your circadian rhythm is busted up.
Already a well known fact, a busted up circadian rhythm is NOT good for your gut microbiome as you can read more about here (Gut Microbiota in Modulating Circadian Rhythm and Metabolic Health) and here (Role of Microbiome in Insomnia, Circadian Rhythm Disturbance and Depression).
How does morning sunshine in your eyes and on your gut help with leaky gut and gut dysbiosis?
In this short read we will look at A-MSH or Alpha-Melanocyte Stimulating Hormone and red light effects on your gut.
Here are two quotes from this review paper on A-MSH, called Alpha-Melanocyte Stimulating Hormone: An Emerging Anti-Inflammatory Antimicrobial Peptide
Indeed, A-MSH appeared to possess potent antimicrobial activity against pathogens from different classes like C. albicans, S. aureus, E. coli, and more. It also adopts variable approaches to kill different microbes (both fungal and bacterial pathogens). For instance, it kills fungal cells through the induction of cAMP and bacterial cells by damaging the membrane.
The inflammatory diseases cured by A-MSH can be classified into two categories. The first one comprises inflammatory disorders of the brain including traumatic head injury, cerebral vasospasm like subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH), multiple sclerosis, meningitis, and brain reperfusion injury [29, 63]. The second category comprises inflammatory disorders of the peripheral organs, including the inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis), arthritis (rheumatoid and gout), systemic inflammation (septic shock syndrome), allergic inflammation of skin, eyes, and lungs, and reperfusion injuries of the gut and heart [29, 64].
As you can see, A-MSH is pretty damn good for your gut. It is both anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial in addition to other immune system boosting and even weight loss mechanisms.
So if you are suffering from some kind of leaky gut intestinal permeability, gut mucosal damage or dysbiosis, you want to optimize the pathways that lead to activating A-MSH.
Now for the million dollar question, how to you optimize A-MSH?
By optimizing your circadian rhythms and getting SUNLIGHT IN THE MORNING!!!!
(Interesting enough getting cold can also raise A-MSH so thats a good thing for the cold thermogenesis crowd).
Why do I say early morning sun, meaning as close to sunrise as possible?
Among other things, the specific combination of sunlight (red, blue and sometimes even just a little bit of low power UV-A) hitting your eyes at that time triggers your body's master clock, also known as the SCN, which sets your circadian rhythm off for the day and also stimulates your hypothalamus and pituitary gland to make hormones from that light.
In this case, they take a protein peptide called POMC and make a hormone called, you guessed it, A-MSH!!!
Essentially, A-MSH and other hormones are made in your brain by early morning SUNLIGHT hitting your eye.
On a side note, it is crucial to be circadian rhythm compliant and get this early morning am light in the actual early morning because the kind of sunlight that comes out a little later in the morning, specifically the stronger UV light, can turn the production of some these hormones off and deactivate them in your system. A-MSH however seems to also be activated in your skin by UV light so you are good to go in that department.
If you have gut problems, get up and see the sunrise every day. No sunglasses. Try to spend at least 15-30 minutes outside in early am sun to get the full effect then take various sun breaks throughout the rest of your day. Build your solar callus (sun tolerance) up by exposing as much skin as possible in this gentle early morning sun so that you will be able to safely expose yourself to the stronger UV enriched sunlight later in the day. This article is probably the best instruction manual out there for building your solar callus, well worth the $3 Patreon fee.
This will help optimize your circadian rhythm and get your body to make and/or conserve all those good hormones, especially A-MSH for gut health.
One more quick thing....
If possible, get your actual skin and gut exposed to that morning sunlight too!
It seems red and infrared light, which makes up over 50% of sunlight, are good for increasing the healthy bugs in your microbiome and decreasing the bad bugs. You can also use a red/infrared light machine like my favorite the EMR Firewave or Firestorm (use code "bluelight" at checkout for 10%off) but using the sunlight is free and it comes with so many other benefits.
I'll get into that a bit more in the next article. If you liked this article, please help us out and share it on your Facebooks page!
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