Thursday, April 12, 2012


(remember this is a summary from the book by Patrick Holford called New Optimum Nutrition for the Mind - you can purchase it here)

I think I need this one. Bad. Anyone that has seen me in the last few weeks can see it. I’m irritable, I talk quickly, I can’t relax. I need to relax – oh help me relax!!

Do you know that in ONE WEEK in Britain – (okay the author of this book is from Britain so that is why there are so many UK stats) they pop 10 million tranquilizers, puff 10 million joints and drink 120 million alcoholic drinks – don’t’ think for a second that we are any better.

Anti- anxiety drugs (tranquilizers) like Valium (diazepam), Librium and Ativan are very effective at reducing symptoms of anxiety in the short term but they are highly addictive in as little as four weeks. Did you know that doctors are strongly advised to NOT prescribe these for more than four weeks!

Even the new class of drugs = nonbenzodiazepines that were developed in order to be a safer, less side effect option, are proving to be just as bad.

“Dependence can develop in as little as one week of continuous use.”

So... What is the alternative?

GABA – is a neurotransmitter which is the brain’s peacemaker, Holford says. It helps to turn off excess adrenalin and calm you down. Tranquilizers (ie.Valium) discussed above promote GABA.

Natural GABA promoters ensure you produce and release GABA when you need to. Those promoters include amino acids, minerals and herbs and he lists the most effective as being: GABA (it’s a neurotransmitter and an amino acid), Taurine, Kava, Valerian, Hops, Passionflower and Magnesium.

As much as I am not against these options – they all are reasonable and safe options- I am going to spend more time looking at giving your body what it is needing…this is my bent…if you are lacking a specific nutrient for your body, you are going to be experiencing symptoms, so let’s look at what your body is needing if you are experiencing anxiety and stress…

Like Magnesium.

It not only relaxes your mind but it also relaxes your muscles too. Muscles aches, cramps, spasms, anxiety and insomnia are classic symptoms that you need more. We need 500 mg daily. Seeds and nuts are a great source as well as dark green leafy veggies (gotta love kale!) so if you are eating lots of these foods daily, supplementing with 300 mg as well is wise. If you are especially anxious, Holford recommends 500 mg in the evening.

Blood Sugar Level.  Again - this is coming up.  When blood sugar levels are going up and down, your body produces more lactic acid which surprisingly enough has been linked to causing anxiety attacks and hyperventilating - which actually produces more lactic acid again.  (incidentally this is why breathing in to a paper bag works - it levels out the glucose levels in the body)

"Finally, deficiency in vitamin B1 stops the body breaking down glucose properly, again promoting lactic acid.  So, make sure you are supplementing a good B complex or multivitamin."

Also - check for food allergies - see this link for more info.

Coming soon...sleep remedies and manic depression...

1 comment:

  1. Yeah, sugar's looking worse everyday. Good stuff, Sarah!