Why am I so depressed?
Depression is a gift.
It's the white flag that your body holds up to surrender from the problem it is facing and it is your chance to heal. Depression is completely reversible.
These are the wise words of Dr. Kelly Brogan, an integrative, holistic, psychosomatic, psychologist that breaks down why medications cover up this symptom that is alerting you to the fact that something is wrong.
What is usually wrong?
Well, we feel unexplainable pain in our bodies and the feeling that something is wrong. This is often accompanied by foggy brain, anxiety, fatigue, lack of interest, and absolutely zero libido. We feel unimportant, and a general sense of malaise. Then, through a conversation with a physician we may be diagnosed with ADD, Clinical Depression, Bipolar Disorder, and prescribed lifelong medication.
Dr. Brogan reminds us that these symptoms are a gift because they are pointing out that there is an imbalance which is either nutritional, environmental, or psychospiritual. You may be eating the wrong foods causing inflammation in your gut, you may be experiencing emotional stress daily, or you may be severely deficient in vitamin B12 or magnesium for example, but you are not deficient in Prozac or Xanax.
When you experience these symptoms you enter a fork in the road, and you have the choice of lifelong pharmaceutical intervention with it's long list of see effects, or finding the root cause and resolving it. I just spent the week with my parents who have regular TV with commercials, and I read the long list of side effects from these medications which include diarrhea, headaches, bloating, weight gain, muscle pain, fatigue, insomnia, depression, and death. Sorry, but isn't that what we were trying to resolve in the first place?
I'm sharing this with you because this was my path. What Dr. Brogan explained as the main culprits: blood sugar imbalance and digestive inflammation were exactly what I was dealing with and my own suffering drove me to specialize in these two intimately related areas.
For years I was plagued with depression, from my suicidal teen years, to my breakdown over my first miscarriage. I went to so many different doctors and therapists that all told me the same thing, "you should take medication."
I had already been medicating myself with recreational and over the counter drugs for years. Though the symptoms would temporarily be covered up, they always came back fast and furious.
Digestive inflammation was something that boggled my brain. I was a vegetarian, I exercised, I cooked my own food, I ate lots of vegetables and still suffered from chronic acid reflux, heartburn, constipation, gas, and was often doubled over in cramping and pain.
What I didn't realize and what I hope you realize sooner than I did, was that the two were related. My gut-brain connection was ruling my cravings for sweets, my diet of scones and mochas every morning, veggie sandwiches every afternoon, and pasta dinners were driving my inflammation wild, and depressing my vitamin deficient brain. It was a vicious cycle that I promise you can overcome.
I attempted my first sugar detox when I realized that I was truly addicted, and my eyes felt like they opened for the first time. It was miraculous and I've never gone back! I never will, because the moment I give in to birthday cake, I feel terrible the next day. My brain fog is back and I can't recall where I put my keys. My irritability returns and I yell at the kids for being kids. My cravings come back like ADD and all I can think of is the distraction of eating more sweets.
These are symptoms that a pharmaceutical cannot change. In fact, many pharmaceuticals are the reason the depression began in the first place. Dr. Brogan shares with us the four main dugs that cause mental side effects: acid blockers, birth control, antibiotics, and pain killers. These drugs are only studied for a 6 week protocol, but many people are still taking them over 2 years later. Birth control for example is taken for years, but a million person study shows that teens prescribed birth control have an 80% risk of depression.
I had no idea that my birth control could have been causing my depression. Why didn't any of my doctors tell me that? I was so upset when I found out because I had been on the pill for nearly 10 years. When I stopped, my hormonal balance returned to normal, my skin stopped breaking out, my hair thickened, and finally my mood and libido improved.
It wasn't that one step and I hope to explain this clearly. It is never just one thing. Restoring your health is about the whole picture, the whole body, the whole mind, and the whole lifestyle. This is why I practice integrative health or as we call it today, functional medicine. An approach of looking at the whole person and deriving from the whole picture, the triggers that are causing the pain, sadness, grief, fatigue, and annoying symptoms that are NOT normal.
Feeling like a woman today, should not feel like hell.
It should feel magical, like you have the power of a wizard to raise kids, please partners, support friends and family, and kick ass at your job. You should have leftover energy to enjoy hobbies, and still have free time to cook and nourish your family.
I have found that balance and I want to share it with you. I didn't find it in a prescription, bottle, or office. I found it by talking to practitioners that cared and led me on my personal path. If you haven't found your perfect path, please contact me. I am here for you and I care.
I mean it when I say that I want you to fall in love with your food, your body, and your life!