Over a year ago, I read an amazing book called “The Mood Cure” by Julia Ross. Whenever I begin to stray from the advice I learned in the book, I always regret it. The basic principle is that what we think is our personality, most of the things that follow “I am” is actually not a static, ingrained or inherited thing, at least not entirely.
As she clearly lays out in the survey on her site, certain fears, sensitivities, habits and motivations are dictated by four brain chemicals: serotonin, GABA, norepinephrine and low endorphins. In her books, she sets out high protein diet suggestions, and primarily amino acid supplements to balance out deficiencies.
When I first took the survey, I scored high scores in all categories. And, when I forget or choose to stop taking one or more of the supplements, I feel symptoms creep back in.
For more than a decade I have meditated daily, practiced mindfulness and turned my natural panicked mind into a much more positive and faith-filled one.
But I still need the brain-balancing support of amino acids. And, I much prefer the natural path.
According to Ms. Ross, low serotonin symptoms include but are not limited to: fear of crowds, flying , heights, public speaking; inflexible, irritable, impatient; pessimistic, anxious; fibromyalgia, SAD.
Serotonin supplements include: 5-htp, tryptophan, St. John’s Wort or Sam-e.
Under GABA, symptoms include but are not limited to: tense, uptight, trouble falling asleep, pressured, overwhelmed; sensitive to bright lights, loud noises, easily frustrated.
GABA is a useful supplement for this category. There are many opinions on its efficacy. I find it works. Some people, including me, have a strong reaction to too much of it at one time. It is quite extreme and includes not being able to catch my breath for at least 30-45 seconds. If you try it, start under 500 mg.
You may also want to try other amino acids like taurine and glycine instead. There are clearly herbal options too such as chamomile, lemon balm or passionflower.
These symptom have mostly to do with feeling blah, apathetic and unmotivated, a lack of adequate dopamine (low cats). More than this, low “cats” mean you have trouble focusing and finding energy. Some symptoms are: low motivation, trouble focusing, concentrating, depressed in a flat & apathetic way.
Supplements include: tyrosine and dlpa. She also suggests herbals to raise cats and get your brain going. They include pycnogenol and grape seed extract.
This equates not only to physical pain, but also emotional pain. If you’ve been called sensitive, have a hard tme getting over emotional hurt, and tend to cry at lots of things from commercials to emotional slights, this isn’t your fault. You likely have a low endorphin level. It’s like we are missing the ability to comfort ourselves without this tool. But there are options.
If you are interested in this path of mental balance, check out the survey and look into her ebook. The survey is a great first step to understand what you may need to balance. Feel free to ask me questions about it, but remember I’m not a doctor. 😉 I believe we have a great power to self-heal in many ways, but ensure you look to your intuition, legit web sources and medical resources as needed.
For me this was a key step on my journey to peace of mind and body, engaged relationships and increased productivity. I hope it is for you too. 💕