Gut & Guts

A small exploration of the insides, with some sayings.

Go with your Gut

Guts are a big, long subject. On a lot of levels. ‘The second brain’ is 9 metres (and approximately two kilos) of Enteric nervous system (ENS) responsible for 95% of serotonin production (mood stabilising chemical), 100% of waste management, and perhaps most notably, a principal player in the effect on mood.

Technically short for the Gastronomical tract - a group of organs including: the oesophagus, stomach, pancreas, liver, gallbladder, small intestine, colon and rectum, it’s a lot to think about and can quickly turn into an ugly mess of mumbo jumbo, without any narrative direction, or appetising appeal. But they are where food goes. And if we are to better understand the relationship between mood, food, health and happiness - they deserve a strong mention, and a little research.

Gut feeling

Nerves can strike guts first (getting ‘butterflies’ - good example). Do you get nervous with a dodgy gut? Or a splitting head? Maybe people come in two types?

The brain is like space, unexplored and crazy. The guts are simpler. They do the grunt work. The guts are human, the brain is divine. But when it comes down to eating, are we more human than divine.

Busting a gut

Notable enhancers include:

Probiotics - Found in ferments [Things like miso (fermented beans), sauerkraut (fermented cabbage), Kimchi (fermented veg) and Sourdough (fermented dough)], also in yogurt, kefir, and some cheeses. Probiotics are ‘good bacteria’, essentially the opposite of ‘bad bacteria’ - the essential idea being that the two will do battle in the effort to maintain a healthy balance (but you can never have too much ‘good’ on your side).

Fibre - Like bananas, peas, almonds and bran. These are more ‘digestifs’ for functionality and the feeding of aforementioned ‘good’.

Ginger, Turmeric, and Garlic - Exotic gut-enhancing classics. Antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and all round stimulating.

Notable busters include:

Alcohol - Found at most social events.

Processed food - Found in bacon sandwiches, burgers, and snack machines.

Sugar - Found in more than you might think.

Greedy Guts (Gastronomy vs Gastronomical

They sound similar, though going to a gastronomical restaurant doesn’t sound as appetising as a gastronomic one. Saying that, a lot of gastronomy does include the use of guts on the plate in varying degrees of deliciousness.

Whether or not the following dishes are good for the gut, mind, body, and soul is hard to determine. Three of the Classics:

(Chicken) Liver pate

Browning chicken livers in butter, adding madeira, cream and spices. Blending and eating on toast. Not bad if you're on the carnivore diet.


Minced heart, kidney’s, liver, fat, pork, onion and spices. Sometimes wrapped in caul fat (a spider web-like fat membrane). Not bad if you’re on a carnivore diet.

Roman tripe

Boiled tripe, tomatoes and salsa verde. The Italians on the whole seem to do healthier sounding offal.

Gut Reaction (conclusion)

That’s about all there is to say about guts for now. Eat well and be brave.

No Guts, no glory.