Antidepressant microbes in soil cause cytokine (substances such as; interferon, interleukin, and growth factors) levels to rise, which results in the production of higher levels of serotonin. The bacterium Mycobacterium vaccae, was tested both by injection and ingestion on rats and the results were increased cognitive ability, lower stress and better concentration to tasks than a control group. Low serotonin has been linked to depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder and bipolar problems. This bacterium found in soil, may stimulate serotonin production, which makes you relaxed and happier.
Most avid gardeners will tell you that their landscape is their “happy place” and the actual physical act of gardening is a stress reducer and mood lifter. They inhale the bacteria, have topical contact with it and get it into their bloodstreams when there is a cut or other pathway for infection. The natural effects of the soil bacteria antidepressant can be felt for up to 3 weeks if the experiments with rats are any indication.
These antidepressant microbes in soil are also being investigated for improving cognitive function, Crohn’s disease and even rheumatoid arthritis. Soil microbes and human health now have a positive link that has been studied and found to be verifiable.
So get out and play in the dirt and improve your mood and your life.