27th June 2016
Further information about depression, OCD, and anxiety.
As I said last week I went to a natural medicine conference with professors of their chosen field spoke.
A lot of issues come from the gut, be it leaky, irritable, protein sensitive (ie, gluten, wheat, milk,) and this leads to inflammation in the brain. Therefore this can lead to emotional upsets, non-efficiency of the brain leading to mood disorders. In our profession (naturopathy) we look into other nutrients that help bring the body back into balance. For anxiety it has been shown that kava kava helps. Yep the Fijians had it right. They coined the phrase of “Island time” and its true. Through a double blind placebo experiment they found that the Kava Kava brought down the levels of anxiety and people were able to function and not have panic attacks. (Sarris, J. et al. Planta Med 2011.) The underlying cause also needs to be addressed by looking at the diet and how food affects them. Square breathing (as described in an earlier blog) can help the system almost immediately by bringing down the sympathetic nervous system. The Enteric nervous system is equally important this is in the gut. So it’s really important to feed both with ideal nutrients.
In the synapse there is a chemical called glutamate, this helps down regulate the active part of the nervous system. To help you keep control of anger, anxiety and mood swings. We find with so much inflammatory and energy up foods. (sugar, caffeine, and additives) that the brain looses its ability to down regulate. By taking NAC (N-actylcysteine) this helps with the glutamate cycle and the swings are far less extreme. This also includes OCD. (Sarris.J et al. 2016).
Sarris J., et al. 2012 also looked into the effect of a multi-vitamin versus a placebo. The findings were very promising. Basically showing that it helped in most areas of people’s lives. Improved sleep was one of the biggest differences in the results. So what that would say to me is that a balanced well rounded diet is the key. If you eat better you feel better. Just make sure that the stress levels are manageable, drink lots of water, ideally not at meal times as this can dilute the stomach acid and enzymes. Put instead either lemon juice or the apple cider vinegar, (1 tspn) with water and that will help the digestive qualities of your own system. Try not to eat too much rubbish, I think we all know which ones those are! Sleep is equally important and can help you function so much better. Kava at night can help this if your brain doesn’t turn off.
Essentially eat well, sleep well. Exercise can help with mood swings, hormones and sleep. Don’t need to do too much, a walk for half an hour 5 times a week, a run of 5 kms three times a week. Don’t set the goals too high but grow with them.