Improving Mental Health…Naturally

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Dear Doctors,

I heard that diet and exercise can effect on how we not only feel energetic wise, but how we think. Do you agree with this, and can eating right and exercise help with the way we process stress and get rid of our “stinking thinking”?

Answer:
Mental health specialists have done research concerning various aspects of social environments, and what comprises the best combination for most individuals. Various age and social groups from pre-school to senior citizens have been widely considered. When most of us think of mental health, we think of social factors affecting the way we think. This of course is a consideration, however, we must also look the benefits of exercise and how nutrition can affect the way we think.

Exercise not only positively affects our cardio-vascular system, but can help relieve stress and “recharge our battery” by removing toxins from our system and secreting hormones such as serotonin to relax our body and to help replenish the stores that are depleted from stress and excessive mental strain; such as a student that is laboring long hours over coursework, study and test taking. This is one reason studies show that high school usually have higher grades when competing in sports.

It has also been known for years that nutrition plays a major role in the health of individuals. We have seen the effects of empty carbohydrates such as white flower products found in pasta’s, crackers and breads, along with excessive refined sugar intake in children labeled “attention deficit”. In Contrast we have evidenced the positive effects of individuals who have limited refined foods in their diet.

There is an institution out west that takes individuals with various “labels” of mental disease and successfully treats these individuals with “fasting” types of diets.

One of the most offensive and overlooked elements in our environment is aluminum. Mental health specialists have linked aluminum intake to Alzheimer’s and other diseases. We are exposed to aluminum in many ways. Below is a few suggestions to limit the effects of aluminum ingestion.

1. Never cook in aluminum cook ware.

2. Use tin foil sparingly and never directly on food.

3. Do not use antiperspirants with aluminum. Deodorants without aluminum are a much better alternative.

4. When given the choice, use foods packaged in plastic instead of aluminum cans, and do not put ANY type of plastic in microwaves. Even when the plastic says “microwave safe”.

5. Often times foods such as yogurt are packaged with aluminum tops on them. Resist the temptation of licking food residues off the aluminum tops.

Making these simple changes could improve your health and perhaps prevent family members from “unknown causes” of disease.

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