I have looked extensively at the science and the personal stories behind mental health conditions and addictions and firmly believe that there is a large biochemical component to mental illness and addictive behaviours.
There is a growing body of scientific literature which recognises that our brain is an organ within our body – and therefore is susceptible to the same nutrient and hormonal issues as the rest of our physiology. In the world of digestive health, my area of expertise, we are learning daily about how the bacterial balance of our GI tract can directly influence the mental state.
We are also becoming more aware of the reverse being true – how neurotransmitters and vagus nerve signalling control the GI function, flow, absorption and sensation. The mind, therefore, is as much a part of our digestive health as the gut itself.
Inflammation is also fundamental to both gastrointestinal and mental wellbeing. Intestinal permeability has been linked to systemic inflammation, and also to the increased levels of certain toxins in the blood (called LPS) which directly affect brain inflammation. This has been linked to depression.
For me, Mindset Medicine is about appreciating that the relationship between the body and mind is bi-directional. This means the mind is both vulnerable to the systemic issues throughout the body, but also can be used as a vital tool to enhance complete physiological healing.
Complex chronic illnesses are increasingly linked to Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) or past traumas. Working through the psychological of historic emotional pain can greatly improve the trajectory of any healing journey, even if the symptoms seem entirely physical.
Furthermore, anyone who has suffered with a long illness, or struggled with even a small degree of consistent pain will typically experience concomitant psychological distress. Mental and emotional effects are the natural end result of any physical trauma or illness.
The work I do with clients, including those with genetically inherited conditions, is to incorporate psychological support, mental reframing and mindset techniques alongside any nutritional interventions. This provides a comprehensive healing structure which can allow for the body and mind to work together to resolve the issues which are manifesting in symptoms.
I am experienced in helping clients wean themselves off psychopharmacological drugs and, using diet, natural supplements and extensive coaching and support, finding a place of stability within their mental and physical health. Working with neurotransmitter chemistry, the genetic regulation of neurotransmitter breakdown and offering counselling to alter internal dialogues, I aim to provide Mindset Medicine alongside Functional Medicine to ensure I deliver a complete healing protocol for my clients.