World Mental Health Day wasn’t just something I could let pass me by without a public acknowledgement. Many of you will know that this subject is dear to my heart. Whether it be my own previous struggles with anxiety or that I spent a few years of my life working in the mental health field, it’s something that is always on my mind (no pun intended!).
Nutrition and psychology are completely intertwined, and to be supporting one path without the other is a huge error, but one that is made frequently.
There are a number of nutrients shown to be deficient in those with mood disorders, and modification in diet can have a profound effect. Caffeine, sugar, dairy and gluten cause disturbances in the body and enhance negative symptoms, and sometimes just removing these foods, and foods that a person is intolerant to, can make the world of difference. In terms of nutrient deficiencies, B vitamins, Omega 3, vitamin D and Zinc are the key players and supplementing at therapeutic doses have been shown to alleviate symptoms as effectively as medical drugs.
In terms of foods, B vitamins are rich in whole foods, green vegetables, beans, nuts and seeds (vegans may need to supplement with B12 as this is vital for mood and is only really found in animal foods); Omega 3 is found in flaxseed and oily fish; vitamin D from the sun (this is likely to need supplementing especially during winter); and zinc is found in beans, legumes, meat and seafood.
Interestingly, in the field of nutrigenomics, it has been found that mutations in certain genes can be linked to mood imbalances, and that with DNA testing and specific versions of supplements, optimal brain functioning can be supported. As a general protocol for mood imbalances, I carry out DNA and food intolerance tests and asses vitamin and mineral levels.
However, whilst I am a firm believer in food for the brain, I’m also a firm believer that physical pain and illness can manifest from unresolved issues or emotional pain. Every time we experience an emotion we emit neuropeptides that effect our body in some way. No matter how healthy your diet, or how hard you train, or what supplements you give to correct your genetic mutations, if you don’t address the underlying emotional cause, you can’t expect to heal completely.
The exciting thing is, there is so much that can be done to support the body and mind, incorporating nutritional therapy with emotional freedom techniques or neurolinguistic programming.
Don’t let your emotions become unbearable, seek help and get the answers you deserve!
For any more information on testing or nutritional support, please send me a message