In the journal Nature, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania found that gut-related bacteria active nerves in the gut that helps to increase one’s motivation to exercise.
“Here, we report on the discovery of a gut–brain connection in mice that enhances exercise performance by augmenting dopamine signalling during physical activity,” the authors explained in their study.
“We find that microbiome-dependent production of endocannabinoid metabolites in the gut stimulates the activity of TRPV1-expressing sensory neurons and thereby elevates dopamine levels in the ventral striatum during exercise.”
The research indicated that the rewarding properties of exercise are affected by gut-related interoceptive circuits. Such findings also suggests that interoceptomimetic molecules that stimulate gut-derived signals to the brain may increase the desire to exercise.
The study was published on December 14, 2022.